As promised, I'm attending the IBM WebSphere 2004 Technical Conference in Munich, Germany. It's a combination of two conferences in the United States, IBM WebSphere Technical Exchange and IBM Transaction and Messaging
Conference. In the US, the first conference focuses on WAS and WSAD, whereas the second conference focuses on CICS and MQ.
At this European conference, the main two topics are CICS (about 40% of the talks) and WBI/MQ (about 40% of the talks), whereas WAS, Studio, and J2EE are fairly small topics. This is apparently a reflection that J2EE is much more popular in the US than in Europe, at least amongst IBM customers. Also, the area labs are sending their developers as speakers, which influences the topics being presented. Many of the speakers on MQ and WBI are developers from the Hersley (England) lab, and there are developers from the Boeblingen (Germany) lab speaking on Process Choreographer and BPEL.
As in San Francisco, Bob Sutor gave the keynote here as well. He explained quite nicely what all this SOA and ESB stuff is all about.