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DC/OS Meetups and Cal Academy

Last week we welcomed Matt Jarvis on to our community team at Mesosphere, which I’m pretty excited about. Not just because I have too much work and I’m thrilled to have someone else on board, but because he’s a great guy who I already enjoy working with. For his first week we had the whole team (three developer advocates and our community manager) meet in San Francisco to give him the crash course in what we do. The evenings were also sprinkled with activities, starting with a meetup on Tuesday evening with the folks from Redis.

The meetup was planned before we knew about his on-boarding, but having us all there gave me the opportunity to co-present with our other developer advocate and throw Matt right into the thick of things by making him MC the event (OK, he’s run Meetups before so it was no big deal). The talk that Joerg and I did covered the various mechanisms for service discovery in DC/OS, which the Redis package benefits from. After a quick install demo, we then welcomed Tague Griffith, head of Developer Advocacy at Redis Labs, who talked about the value of microservices, where Redis fits in, and how it’s easy to deploy it on DC/OS.

Slides from the Service Discovery on DC/OS segment of the presentation are up here (PDF) and the video of the meetup is on YouTube.

On Thursday night we wanted to do a social gathering together, along with our current boss. We met up at Joerg’s apartment and made dinner together (I washed and cut some things!) and had a couple beers. Then we set out walk through Golden Gate Park for NightLife at the California Academy of Sciences. A lot of museums in the city are either open late or have special events on Thursday nights, so it was good timing for us and I’d wanted to check out NightLife for some time. By the time we got there, around 7:30, the planetarium tickets were gone and the last entrance to the rain forest dome had just been called, both things I’ll keep in mind for next time, but there was plenty else to do. Having just been there a couple weeks before, I played tour guide as we went into the earthquake house, saw the penguins, explored the aquarium, saw the Pterosaurs exhibit and visited the living roof, where we got a group photo!

Ben Hindman, myself, Joerg Schad, Judith Malnick and Matt Jarvis

Keeping busy with Meetups, this week I popped down to Irvine in southern California on Wednesday. I was able to meet up with a freelancer I know down there for lunch and have some great chats about our shared Ubuntu background (that’s how we met) and the state of the container space (like where DC/OS and Apache Mesos fit in!). He’s also going back in time with some repairs on really old systems that he has, so it was fun to learn about his experience with how difficult and inconsistent personal computer networking was in the 80s, and how interesting it has been replicating it today.

In the evening I met up with our Mesosphere representative at the SoCal DevOps meeting. I was there to give a talk on “Containerized, Cloud-Native Operations for Big Data Analytics” (slides). After pizza and drinks, the meetup organizer had attendees do quick introductions. It had been a while since I’d been to a meetup that did that, and aside from being good for attendees to get to know each other (especially when you’re shy like me!), it’s incredibly helpful to the speaker. Knowing some of the background of attendees helped me adjust my talk quite a bit to tell the right stories and touch upon pain points I knew they’d be familiar with in the operations work they were doing.

Thanks to Steve Wong over at Dell EMC for taking this photo during my talk! (source)

The talk itself centered around maintaining a generic container-based cloud-native infrastructure, but during the Q&A the audience was eager to learn more about DC/OS specifically, so I was happy to oblige! I also did the Bus Tracking SMACK Stack to show them DC/OS in action and answer some more of their questions about usage around the GUI and CLI.

Even better, this demo uses data from the Los Angles Metro, so I finally got to give this demo near Los Angeles! Unfortunately the LA Metro buses don’t come as far southeast as Irvine, so it wasn’t quite a local demo, but it was pretty close. I also enjoyed the subsequent jokes about LA traffic, and buses getting stuck in it, when they asked specifics about how the demo worked.

Getting to meet some folks down there was also valuable as we have MesosCon North America down in Los Angeles in September. For folks eager to learn more about DC/OS and Apache Mesos, it’s an amazing opportunity to do both, and it’s right in their back yard this year.