Node PDX – Introducing Scott Hanselman, Tracy Abrahms, Matthew Lyons & J Chris Anderson

Welcome to iteration 3 of introductions.

Scott Hanselman is presenting…

Azure for the non-Microsoft Person – How and Why?

Scott Hanselman
Scott Hanselman

Scott is a web developer who has been blogging at for over a decade. He works on Azure and ASP.NET for Microsoft out of his home office in Portland. Scott has three podcasts, for tech talk, on developers’ lives and loves, and for pop culture and tech media. He’s written a number of books and spoken in person to almost a half million developers worldwide.

For a dose of Scott, check out how to scale to infinity by doing NOTHING!

Join Hanselman as he digs into the open source SDKs of Windows Azure. Let’s access Azure from the command line and deploy and redeploy with Git. We’ll fire up Linux VMs, setup Mongo and run node.js apps in the cloud. We’ll look at things like SendGrid and New Relic. The future of the cloud is open and it’s a hybrid. This very technical session will cover Windows and Mac, .NET as well as pinching pennies in the cloud.

Tracy Abrahms is presenting…

Punching Rocks: my intimate adventure with rock climbing and becoming a programmer

Tracy Abrahms
Tracy Abrahms

Tracy tells a story, “A funny thing happened at the rock gym… I kept running into programmers. Rock climbing is a constant challenge. Physical? Hardly. Tired muscles is a concern once you’re two pitches up and can’t figure out the next move. I’m afraid of heights! The psychological and mental tenacity required to complete a wall feels eerily similar to the daily challenges of the Programmer. You will commit yourself to situations that you pretty much HAVE to find a way out of. Sound familiar?

Malcom Gladwell’s 10,000 hours–I’m not that far in. How are people learning to program nowadays? MOOCs, tutorials, workshops, communities(, books, standard CS degrees(what of non-tech degrees?), internships, apprenticeships, code schools. What am I doing? What have I done? How many callouses have I build in the process? Experiences shared from my own perspective and others I have met on my journey have shown me a number of great ways to help move forward those willing to take up the challenge.

Finally, what can I do, along with knowledgeable and helpful Node.js programmers, to build the knowledge base and accessibility into the community? How do I get programmers hooked? And how can I convince all of these brainiacs to get out and punch a few rocks?

Matthew Lyon is presenting…

Let’s Make Music

Matthew Lyon
Matthew Lyon

I got to work with Matthew @mattly for a short period while I was helping out at AppFog a while ago. I also have had the great fortune of catching Matthew talk about JavaScript magic and more!

Also a homebrewer, hacker, artist, photographer Mattew Lyon is coming to give us a lesson on making music. He describes his course as thus, “Music happens over time and so does asynchronous code. Therefore, let’s write music in Javascript! We’ll build a network sound sequence server that will talk to freely-available softsynths and possibly an HTML5 Audio API, covering how to model things such as drum patterns, melodies, oscillators and pattern banks.

J Chris Anderson presenting…

Hands On Realtime Text Analytics

J Chris Anderson
J Chris Anderson

J Chris just recently returned to Portland because of many different reasons after hacking in the San Francisco area. If you know what livable streets are (re: Bike Portland and if you intend to stay and live in Portland, you probably should get in on this, livable streets are too good to merely pass up), you’ll want to keep tabs on J Chris’ efforts ongoing, I definitely will be! J Chris also refers to himself as a hacker dad, couchbase cofounder & mobile architect.

With “Hands on Realtime Text Analytics” J Chris will present to us  as described:

A common problem in large scale computing, is coordinating workers when they can be scattered across compute nodes. For workloads like this, atomic operators like increment and decrement reduce contention between distributed processes.

In this talk I’ll show a full text analysis tool which ranks words in the Twitter firehose. By storing each token in a key based on its characteristics, we can provide word rankings both globally, as well as over time and space.

We’ll show the running application, and take a tour through the code, as well as discuss cluster sizing and how it is impacted by variations in the input data stream.

For instance a tweet in English from San Francisco might say “Go Giants” so counters for 2012:go and usa-sf:2012-07:giants (among a few dozen others) are incremented. Even using memory like this, the counts from a full corpus of English text would only take a few gigabytes to hold, making this architecture more efficient than a traditional index-and-rollup approach.


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