How I survived the “Surviving Open Source” keynote at IntelliJ IDEA Conf

Celebrating the keys to my surviving the IntelliJ IDEA Conf 2022 keynote.

The title slide from my “Surviving Open Source” keynote at IntelliJ IDEA Conf 2022 with me in the picture on the left presenting.
The title slide from my “Surviving Open Source” keynote at IntelliJ IDEA Conf 2022

Celebrating with a thank you!

I haven’t given a virtual conference talk during the pandemic, at least until last week. I miss in person conference talks because I feel much more comfortable engaging directly with an audience than I do with a screen and camera. I have presented a few times at some smaller Java User Group meetups during the pandemic. At small virtual JUG meetups I was able to interact directly with the audience members during and after the talk. These venues felt a lot more personal than a conference with hundreds of attendees on a livestream.

When I was presented with the opportunity give the keynote at IntelliJ IDEA Conf 2022, I said yes. I couldn’t say no, even though this would take me out of my comfort zone. I have been an IntelliJ user for 20 years, and thought this would be a good opportunity to give something back to the IDE I love coding with. I have watched other Java Champions and colleagues give IntelliJ Livestreams and I was always impressed with the content, the speakers, the moderators and the production quality of the talks. Now that I have delivered the keynote, I am happy I said yes.

I’m going to follow my own advice, and openly celebrate this as a personal win. I want to thank all of the folks who were directly and indirectly responsible in helping me step out of my comfort zone and give this talk.

Note: If you’re here looking for the slides, they are linked in the “Thank you to IntelliJ, AsciiDoc and GitHub” section below.

Thank you to the conference organizers

Thank you, Mala Gupta and JetBrains, for inviting me to do the keynote this year at the IntelliJ IDEA Conf. It was a lot of fun and very nostalgic talking about the long road of open source I have been traveling for the past 18 years. I hope the talk inspires others to find and follow their own paths and start down whatever journey brings them joy in open source.

Thank you to the conference facilitators

Thank you to Mala Gupta, Helen Scott, Ida Bzowska, and Aleksandr Evdokimov for all of the help planning and preparing for the the keynote. Thank you to Marit van Dijk for answering questions and providing links to the slides during the livestream. A special thank you to Mala Gupta for being patient, supportive and an amazing moderator during the livestream.

Thank you to folks who helped me improve my slides

Thank you to Chandra Guntur, Rustam Mehmandarov, Nikhil Nanivadekar, Mala Gupta, Emilie Robichaud for reviewing and helping me make many improvements to my slides over the past several weeks.

Thank you to the Eclipse Collections Committers

Thank you to my fellow committers on Eclipse CollectionsCraig Motlin, Hiroshi Ito, Mohammd Rezaei, Nikhil Nanivadekar and Sirisha Pratha. You have helped make this journey possible and enjoyable.

Thank you to the Eclipse Collections Contributors

Thank you to all of the contributors who have joined the Eclipse Collections community and make working on this library both interesting and fun.

Thank you to the Open Source community

A special thank you to Hiroshi Ito, Paul Sandoz, Nikhil Nanivadekar, Noctarius2K, Yawkat, Gunter Rotsaert, Marit van Dijk for making surprise cameos in my slides via tweet screenshots and public email links. Thank you for being part of my story of surviving open source.

Thank you to IntelliJ, AsciiDoc and GitHub

I developed the slides for the “Surviving Open Source” talk using AsciiDoc in IntelliJ. Thank you to Chandra Guntur for showing me that “this is the way” to present some time ago. The slides are viewable in the GitHub viewer, but some of the images will be aligned to top instead of floating right. The slides are best viewed in IntelliJ with the AsciiDoc plugin. This is what I used to present my talk at the IntelliJ IDEA Conf keynote.

Thank you to the keynote attendees

Thank you to everyone who watched the livestream live and for the great comments and questions. I drove nine hours from New Jersey to Maine immediately after finishing the talk, so didn’t get to see the comments until a few days later when I watched the recording. I appreciate all of the great comments, questions and feedback. If you didn’t see the keynote, the recording is available on the JetBrains YouTube channel.

Link to the keynote at IntelliJ IDEA Conf 2022

Thank you to my wife and kids

It is important to celebrate the most important people in our lives, for the little things they do every single day to help make things we do worthwhile and possible. My wife ordered me a beautiful new bookshelf and had the wall in my office painted a brighter color prior to the talk. I think it looks amazing. I happily stacked and organized the many books I have collected over the past 30 years on the shelves. She also ordered me the standing desk I used during the talk and every single day when I work remotely. Thank you, every single day.

Telling stories is so important for our kids. I hope my kids learn lessons and find inspiration from the stories their dad tells. I want them to know how proud I am of them, and how much I cherish hearing their stories every day. Thank you, every single day.

Thank you!

Thank you, the reader, for reading this far! I hope you watch and enjoy the keynote and the other amazing talks at IntelliJ IDEA Conf 2022! Good luck on your journeys with open source!

A picture of me prioritizing self care in Maine a couple of days after the giving the keynote at IntelliJ IDEA Conf 2022. I am sitting on a beach by a lake watching the sunset and drinking a cup of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee.
A picture of me prioritizing self care in Maine a couple of days after the keynote

I am the creator of and a Committer for the Eclipse Collections OSS project which is managed at the Eclipse Foundation. Eclipse Collections is open for contributions.



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Donald Raab

Java Champion. Creator of the Eclipse Collections OSS Java library ( Inspired by Smalltalk. Opinions are my own.