I know I’m late with my updates, but I’m currently enrolled in the final project based MBA class at the University of Hawaii and it’s been kicking my @$$. In any case, enough excuses… here’s the quick rundown of the presentations I attended on Day 3, 4, and 5 at OSCON. Btw, all the presentation files can be found online! (Don’t you love open source). Not to mention, I’ve tried to scour the web for reviews notes for each session and linked them appropriately.
Since we’ve implemented Subversion at work, I wanted to be forward thinking and check out all the new features and the direction of the project. It’s nice to know they’re looking at Mercurial’s revlog.
Session 2: Who Gets to Decide What Open Source Means? with a really powerful panel of people.
With a panel of supastahs, I wanted to hear the debate about all the confusion surrounding the word “free” software and what exactly constitutes open source. Pretty interesting to see what all the fuss is about especially once the software crosses over into the Enterprise.
Since I just installed a VMWare image of a Trac install on Windows, I wanted to see what the community buzz was all about. The talk was really, really crowded; not to mention I heard numerous speakers over the course of the conference pimp out Trac. People mentioned having trouble installing Trac on Windows, but I followed the wiki instructions and it was fine – not sure what all the fuss is about. I’ll have to get back to the office and figure out how to setup the authentication and hooks into our repository so we can actually use the installation I configured at work.
Steve introduced an internal Yahoo! tool, YSlow, that hooked into the lovely Firebug to grade the performance of a website. After having played with it for a few days, I’m loving it. Nothing like instant gratification in the form of a score. And if you develop ANYTHING on the web and you’re not using Firebug, it’s best advised that you do.
Session 1: Why Observability Matters – How DTrace Helped Twitter with Adam Leventhal and Brandon Gregg.
After reading about all the scaling troubles of Twitter, I really wanted to see what tools helped determine the root cause of the problem. Sun’s DTrace is a fascinating real time, trace tool that can help debug and trace pretty much any issue that you’d encounter. Though I can’t use it at work, I still love to see the low level tools that are being developed. If you’re lost, don’t worry I was too, read more about DTrace at Wikipedia.
Since I’ve slowly been delving in the Rails world, I wanted to see what the plugin system was all about. The session was pretty informative, even recommending sites that give statistics on the most frequently used plugins. (Don’t worry, I still love my Django).
Hearing the God of Python speak about its future is pretty fascinating. I find it interesting that Py3K will break compatibility with Python 2.X. If you don’t know what that means, basically – you have to upgrade all your Python scripts to 2.6, then a source-code conversion tool will be used to convert your source files in Python 2.6 to Py3K. Scary but rest assured that these guys are super smart. To read more about Py3K, you can check out the PEP for it.
I’ve heard Rod speak a number of times at JavaOne and since I’ve converted all my projects to use Spring in some fashion or another, I always like to see what’s going on in the community. Btw, if you’re not using a dependency injection framework, you really, really, really need to look into them.
Since Harper and Scoot are friends of Brian’s in Chitown and we use Subversion at work, I wanted to see what the core development team thought about the worst practices. This was by far the funniest of all the sessions I attended, and it was SRO only. To read about notes from last year’s session named “Subversion Best Practices”, check them out here. Or… even better, check out Fitz’s blog about this year’s presentation.
Whew. All in all, a very awesome conference. Hopefully, I can convince management that this is the future. // KANNO