August 23, 2012

Over the last few weeks we’ve been rolling out the talk details for RICON2012, Basho’s first-ever developer conference dedicated to Riak and the future of distributed systems in production. Taking place in San Francisco this October, it should be invaluable to anyone working in, around or with large-scale systems. While there are some talks we have yet to announce, the majority are live.

tl;dr – Go buy your tickets for RICON. Do it right now. The early-bird price of $250 ends in just over a week, and for that reasonable fee you’re not only getting access to more than 20 amazing talks on distributed systems and Riak in production, but you’ll be part of a two day celebration that includes parties, lightning talks, amazing swag, talented developers and ops professionals from around the world, hack sessions, and much more. (Watch the blog and the @basho for details on the “much more”. )

The full schedule is here. Some of the highlights are below.

And if anyone needs convincing about why they should come to RICON, feel free to email me directly – I’m happy to answer any and all questions about why you and your teams should join us.



There will be three keynotes, and they will all be exceptional.

  • Opening, Day 1: Dr. Eric Brewer, VP, Infrastructure at Google and Professor of Computer Science at UC Berkeley (who also happens to be the creator of the CAP Theorem), will be kicking things off. RICON is more or less taking place on the anniversaries of both the CAP Theorem and the release of Amazon’s “Dynamo Paper”. This talk should be memorable.
  • Opening, Day 2: Gary Flake, CEO of Clipboard, and ex-Technical Fellow at Microsoft, will be sharing details on how and why he and his team chose Riak for a social application.
  • Closing, Day 2: UC Berkeley Professor Joseph Hellerstein will be closing the conference with a talk titled Keep CALM and Query ON.

Riak In Production

If you’re looking for reasons to run Riak in production from honest, articulate, experienced users, there will be no shortage. A portion of what’s planned:

  • Voxer’s Matt Ranney will be on hand to tell the crowd what he both loves about Riak and would like to see fixed. They have 100s of TBs of data in Riak spread over more than 60 machines.
  • The Bump team started with a MongoDB to Riak migration some months ago and have since built various apps and features on it. They will be presenting on how they built a Transaction-Logs based protocol with Riak and Haskell.
  • Various teams at Comcast rely on Riak in production. Michael Bevilacqua-Linn, a Principal Engineer, is joining us to share details on how Riak integrates with a custom in-memory system to power
  • EnStratus CTO George Reese is presenting on the work he and his team are doing to move from MySQL to Riak in an effort build high-availability into their platform.
  • Dietrich Featherston, an engineer on the Boundary Team, is giving at talk called Modern Radiology for Distributed Systems that will highlight their work with Riak and show you why it’s important to take a “radiological view” of your entire system.

Distributed Systems In Production

Riak isn’t the only focus of RICON. Some of the talks that will touch on other distributed systems:

  • Dana Contreras from Twitter will be talking about how they managed to rebuild their massive infrastructure on the fly.
  • Mandi Walls’ talk about using Chef for distributed systems will be invaluable to anyone tasked with managing N machines at scale.
  • The inestimable Theo Schlossnagle is going in-depth on how you should approach monitoring clusters of machines in production.

Basho On Riak

A handful of Basho Engineers are giving talks on certain components of Riak and what future functionality you can expect from us and the community. Some of the highlights:

  • Sean Cribbs and Russell Brown are going deep on data structures in Riak. (Yes, actual data structures.)
  • Bryan Fink will shed some light on Riak Pipe, Riak’s MapReduce Engine, and how it can be used for large-scale data processing.
  • Kelly McLaughlin and Reid Draper are two of the primary engineers working on Riak CS, Riak’s cloud storage extension. They’ll be walking you through how and why we built it and why it’s valuable.
  • Ryan Zezeski is talking about the future of distributed search with Riak and Solr