TITLE: Strange Loop This and That
AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford
DATE: October 16, 2010 7:59 PM
Some miscellaneous thoughts after a couple of days
in the mix...
Pertaining to Knowing and Doing
** Within the
recurring theme of big data,
I still have a few things to study: MongoDB, CouchDB,
and FlockDB. I also learned about Pig, a language
I'd never heard of before. I think I need to learn
** I need to be sure that my students learn
about the idea of
brought them back
into mainstream discussion.
** Kevin Weil, who spoke about NoSQL at Twitter,
told us that his background is math and physics.
Not CS. Yet another big-time developer who came to
programming from another domain because they had
real problems to solve.
Pertaining to the Conference
** The conference served soda all day long,
from 8:00 in the morning to the end of the day.
Hurray! My only suggestion: add Diet Mountain Dew
to the selections.
** The conference venues consist of two rooms
in a hotel, two rooms in a small arts building, and
the auditorium of the
The restrooms are all small. During breaks, the
line for the men's room was, um, long. The women
in attendance came and went without concern. This
is exactly opposite of what one typically sees out
in public. The women of Strange Loop have their
** This is the first time I have ever attended
a conference with two laptop batteries. And I saw
that it was good. Now, I just have to find out why
every couple of weeks my keyboard and trackpad freeze
up and effectively lock me out. Please, let it
not be a failing mother board...
Pertaining to Nothing But Me
** Like every conference, Strange Loop fills
the silence between sessions with a music loop. The
music the last two days has been aimed at its audience,
which is mostly younger and mostly hipper than I am.
I really enjoyed it. I even found a song that will
enter my own rotation, "Hey, Julie" by Fountains of
Wayne. You can,
listen to it
I'll have to check out more Fountains of Wayne later.
** On Twitter, I follow a relatively small
number of people, mostly professional colleagues
who share interesting ideas and links. I also
follow a few current and former students. Rounding
out the set are a couple connections I made with
techies through others, back when Twitter was small.
I find that I enjoy their tweets even though I don't
know them, or perhaps because I don't.
On Thursday, it occurred to me: Maybe it would be
fun to follow some arbitrary incredibly popular
person. During one of the sessions, we learned that
Lady Gaga has about 6,500,000 followers, surpassing
Ashton Kutcher's six million. I wonder it would be
like to have their tweets flowing in a stream with
those of Brian Marick and Kevlin Henney, Kent Beck
and Michael Feathers.