Entries by Cameron Conaway

Kafka Summit 2018: Insights from Day 2

The second and final day of Kafka Summit 2018 offered up an array of excellent speakers, including a brilliant opening keynote from Martin Kleppmann of the University of Cambridge.

Kleppmann’s talk, Is Kafka a Database?, asked a fundamental though controversial question, and he conveyed his solution through each property of ACID (Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, Durability).

Here are the slides and the full video from the keynote:

A fascinating panel discussion, titled Stream of Consciousness: Industry Leaders Discuss Kafka, followed Kleppmann’s talk.

Moderated by Confluent’s co-founder and CTO Neha Narkhede and including Microsoft’s CTO Kevin Scott, Slack’s Head of Engineering Julia Grace and Confluent’s co-founder and CEO Jay Kreps, the discussion naturally began at Kafka’s rise at LinkedIn and ended with each panelist giving a glimpse into the future.

Narkhede did a fantastic job as moderator, transitioning when needed and allowing all voices to be heard. Here’s the full video:

From there I attended a talk from IBM’s Chatura Fernando (left) and Sasha Williamson (right) titled Building Human-Centered Apps with Kafka:

Design thinking at Kafka Summit 2018

Centered around IDEO‘s principles of design thinking, Fernando and Williamson shared a glimpse into how IBM’s “enterprise design thinking” framework serves to create better customer experiences.… Read the rest

Kafka Summit 2018: Insights from Day 1

Kafka Summit 2018 kicked off today under clear blue skies in San Francisco. Held at Pier 27 along the Embarcadero, the premier event for those interested in streaming data with Apache Kafka also had a premier venue to host an event of around 1,000 attendees.

This was our view for lunch:

Kafka Summit 2018

The event kicked off with a fantastic keynote from Chris D’Agostino, VP of Streaming Data at Capital One. In the presentation, What’s in your topic? Building an enterprise streaming platform at Capital One, D’Agostino broke down the four critical goals his team developed before implementing a streaming data platform:

  1. Shared Infrastructure & Self-Service: they needed dynamic provisioning across all environments (DEV, QA, PROD) for four LOBs, digital and shared technology,
  2. Producer Autonomy: producers needed to own their data, control access to it, and determine performance and blast radius characteristics,
  3. Data Governance: This was about producer accountability and the establishment of consistency and quality for events using data management tools; and,
  4. Data Democracy: the ability to easily produce, consume and act on data through a single user experience.

Read the rest

Google Cloud Next 2018: Insights From Day 3

The big news of Day 3 was that Google is integrating Cloud Build with GitHub so that it’s easier to add continuous integration processes to GitHub code repositories.

Note: Here is a recap of Day 1 and Day 2

Let’s dive into two particularly interesting sessions.

1. Storing & Securing Your Data: Rolling Out Storage & Disaster Recovery

Google Cloud’s Head of Higher Education, Steven Butschi opened the session and handed it off to Arun, the Lead Cloud Infrastructure Engineer at Stanford University, who talked about earthquake-prone San Francisco and the vulnerability of all data in physical centers.

Get this: up until two years ago, 200TB of critical research data at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business was sitting on-premise and wasn’t backed up.

Arun sought to change this and, in collaboration with Google and data management software company Komprise, was able to begin the school’s cloud migration efforts.

For Steven Nguyen, IT Service Owner for Collaboration and Web at the University of Minnesota, the change was perhaps even more dramatic.… Read the rest

Google Cloud Next 2018: Insights From Day 2

Google Cloud CMO Alison Wagonfeld kicked off Day 2 here at Google Cloud Next 2018.

Note: Here’s the Day 1 recap

Alison quickly handed it off to Garrick Toubassi, VP of Engineering at G Suite, who opened with this stat:

“Since last year we’ve added 1 million new paying businesses to G Suite.”

This was in addition to a few other figures worth noting:

  • 80 million students worldwide are working with G Suite; and,
  • 91% of all phishing attacks begin with an email (Google blocks 10 million bad messages every minute).

Garrick also mentioned “Confidential Mode,” which gives users greater control of their email, including which emails offer forwarding access, etc. It’s a move that has fans and critics alike (Gennie Gebhart and Cory Doctorow of the Electronic Frontier Foundation address the challenges here).

Garrick also announced Cloud Search, which brings Google’s search expertise to Google Drive (I’m super excited about this as search within cloud-based content storage is notoriously problematic either in how it surfaces results or how it disrupts your working experience).… Read the rest

Google Cloud Next 2018: Insights From Day 1

As a local, I was lucky enough to be able to walk to Moscone Center. Still, with over 20,000 people piled into the same area, and San Francisco construction seemingly encroaching on all sides, it was a journey that resulted in a tear in my jeans and still missing the in-person keynote that I’d been so excited to see (see Tweet for some additional details).

BUT I was able to nerd out in the front row of the overflow room and get some world-class photos like this one:

Google Cloud CEO Diane Greene


Yes, that’s Google Cloud’s CEO Diane Greene. She kicked off Google Cloud Next 2018 by asking a question hundreds of thousands of architects and developers around the world are also asking:

“Why Google Cloud?”

AWS has become the cloud default for many, but as Fortune reported on Monday, shares in Google’s parent Alphabet rose nearly 5% thanks in many ways to the massive success of Google Cloud.… Read the rest

A New Era in Messaging as a Service

Digital transformation is often positioned as a single event or burst of activities. Survey questions such as “How far along are you in your digital transformation?” only serve to bolster this notion.

Truth is, transformation is continuous and it can often feel like you’re taking two steps back just to move a few inches forward.

This is especially apparent for enterprises moving to the cloud but still maintaining their important on-premise legacy systems.

As Mark Smith of Ventana Research wrote in his paper below, such companies “often encounter the challenge of maintaining the continuity of business processes.”

Mark is the CEO and Chief Research Officer at Ventana and he has held CMO, product development and research roles at companies such as SAP, META Group, Oracle and IRI Software.

His experience across major industries including banking, consumer products, food and beverage, insurance, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, and retail and consumer services has allowed him to watch, lead, and now research digital transformations at various stages and in various sectors.… Read the rest