Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Vault Conference - Day 1

I am attending the Linux Foundation Vault Linux Storage and Filesystem Conference in Boston this week. It is the first year and it follows a more regular 2 day invite only developer conference/workshop.  There appears to be great international attendance. It is small - only 4 breakout rooms though they are good sized rooms and have been full.

Day 1 - keynotes and amenities.

The first keynote was interesting. It was a summary of the two day invitation developer workshop. It was nicely done, especially knowing it was a short notice report. It was much more technical than other conferences I have attended and I quickly knew that I was a noob in this crowd.  In a sense it was a technical road map rather than a marketing road map.

I quickly realized that many other sessions would also be more technical than other conferences I have attended recently. I am here to be a sponge. I just want to absorb some additional knowledge in the storage realm. I'll continue to be a user of enterprise ready solutions. Teaching HDFS and Glusterfs administration means that I need to be aware of what is coming with those products and also with related products.

Next was the obligatory sponsor keynote. Pretty average on its industry trend vs company bias. At least it was short.

The venue is the Revere Hotel.  There is a large theater in the back that was used for the keynotes.  The vendor booths (the few present as sponsors of the conference) was in another large area on the 6th floor. The breakout session were split between the Mezzanine Floor and the 6th Floor, 2 rooms each.  This was the most frustrating. I have attended events with multiple buildings and multiple floors, but in all cases there was a reasonable option for walking between areas. A single floor difference, not 5 flights.  The elevators were a bottleneck.

The food spreads were pretty to look at. There was a lot of fresh fruit I could eat.  Allergies kept me away from the fancy (gluten) donuts and the afternoon cookies.  I also survived on tea instead of coffee since I am not a fan of black coffee and did not bring any alternative (coconut or almond) milk. The evening event booth crawl had a nice spread. At least it looked nice. A beautiful cheese spread that I was jealous of and some tasty looking pizzas.  I had salad. At least it was more than lettuce . It included tomato, cucumber, and avocado.

I was a bit surprised that there was not a sponsored bag,even a small tote bag or something to collect the pens, fliers, and media from the vendor booths. I guess it has been a while since I have been to a first year or startup conference.

Day 1 - breakout sessions

Btrfs future plans. Chris Mason is from Facebook but did a great job of sharing what other company contributions are happening. He also had a long Q&A period and did an excellent presentation. He had no problem remembering to repeat the question so all could hear and he answered the questions with ease, confidence, and I am assuming (based on followup or lack of followup) correctly.

In the second slot, I attended the Ceph Road Map presentation and after lunch I listened to a discussion on librados. In these talks I jotted down a lot of new vocabulary words. Ceph is really coming along and the examples of librados use cases for moving compute to the data were great.

The next session was a bit of a dud. Besides being distracted by the controversy I had created with a Twitter post, the presenters could only share limited information of their solution and admitted that they use the upstream product but do not contribute back to it. Perfectly fine, but I expect presenters at a conference like this to have committers on staff as well.

I couldn't decide on the last slot and opted to go find a power outlet for my phone. I was going to need it if I wanted a ride form the T station home later in the evening.

Time to recharge for another round tomorrow.


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