Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Interesting times for networking

James Hamilton recently published an article about the increased pace in investment in networking. This very much aligns with my experience over the last 10 years and why I now work on Virtual Networking. 10 years ago, a data-center host typically had a single 1Gb link to the TOR (Top Of Rack switch/router), and the uplink from the rack was typically heavily oversubscribed, meaning that a rack of 30 hosts would only have 8Gb or 10Gb of uplink to the rest of the network. Now we see 10/25/40Gb uplinks per host and little or no oversubscription to the fabric. We are also seeing a massive upset in the networking industry. The ability of commodity hardware to do what used to require ASICs has lead to an explosion of flexible networking solutions. The utter dependence on Cisco / Juniper / is waining to be replaced by whiteboxes and moving the smarts to software defined overlays. As datacenter expansion has moved from owned/managed facilities to cloud we are also seeing these cloud vendors are big enough to justify home-grown networking equipment for more and more of their network. At the same time we are seeing the rise of technologies such as P4 which enables faster iteration and facilitates the entrance of new hardware vendors. These are fun times to be involved in networking. One of many reasons I work on Virtual Networking for Oracle Cloud infrastructure.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

note to self: Raspbian Setup

This is mostly a note to myself to remind me how to setup a new raspbian image.

The initial setup has a number of challenges that this write-up addresses:

  1. Locale and Keyboard as GB
  2. Setting up WiFi
  3. Setting up static IP
  4. General Reminders

Locale and Keyboard

Update Locale to en.US UTF-8.

sudo dpkg-reconfigure locales
sudo dpkg-reconfigure keyboard-configuration
sudo reboot

If keyboard is still not working, try manually editing /etc/default/keyboard and updating XKBLAYOUT to "us".


Add to /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf:


Then restart network:

sudo /etc/init.d/networking restart

Other Wifi notes

Setting up Static IP.

Setting pi as Access Point

General reminders

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

Monday, April 04, 2011


My significant other works in a bio research lab for the University of Washington. She sometimes uses a machine that she refers to as 'the robot'. I work at Amazon on AWS/S3. The closest thing I get to a robot is our soda dispensing machine. My office/desk needs a robot. hmmmm.....

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Coffee shops

I'll admit that I live in Seattle, a city lucky enough to have weathered the recession better than most. And yet, Seattle is the home of Microsoft. As such, I would expect to see mostly Windows laptops when I wander into coffee shops. Historically, this has been true. There were always a few trendy folk (or well of dorks, such as myself) with some for of Apple laptop, but they were the exception. The tide has been trending toward more and more Apple products though. Today, I was struck as I walked into my neighborhood coffee shop and counted 5 laptops, with not a single Windows machine in the bunch. Soon, there-after one laptop user left and was replaced by the lone Windows laptop in the shop.

Has Microsoft mind-share fallen this badly? I know that when I talk with co-workers, many of them have Macs at home (or Linux... I do manage a team of software developers after all). This is despite the fact that many of them are ex-Microsoft employees. Many of us use Windows at the office, but it is telling that given the choice, more and more people choose Mac. I realize that Seattle is its own little microcosm, but I fear that this does not bode well for Microsoft. How long before the average person's only 'computer' is an iPad or Android type device?

We are moving to a world where everything is on the web. You don't need a large hard-drive because you can archive everything into the cloud, or maybe store everything on a computer that sits in your closet, or (more likely) next to your TV. Near ubiquitous internet connectivity fundamentally changes the game. Web applications for all your core tasks fundamentally changes the game.

Microsoft is just like the other dinosaur industries mentioned in Innovator's Dilemma. The pillars upon which their business depends are eroding. I fear that soon they will discover that they will wake up and discover that even their precious enterprise market is no longer safe.

Time to start think about selling my remaining MSFT stock.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Where did he go?

I have spent much of the weekend working on some browser-based tools to access S3 and manage content stored there. In talking to a few people about what I was working on, I often described it relative to a typical blog. Eventually that lead me to look at my own blog and realize that it has been over a year since I posted. Ouch.

So what have I been doing? Lots! Work (Amazon/S3) keeps me very busy. The last year has seen us continue to grow and launch feature after feature after feature. My team is hiring like crazy as well. This summer I spent 2 weeks in Maine with my family, trying to keep my nephew from riding off the roads into the bushes. I spent the spring climbing mountains taking the WAC's Basic Climbing Class. (Highly recommended by the way.) When not out hiking/climbing, my weekends are often occupied with walking/jogging the dog and generally enjoying Seattle.

I spent New Year's down in the SF Bay area visiting a friend, and talking to people down there made me realize how much I really love living in Seattle. It helps that so many of the tech people I talked to down there also use AWS. It is hard to imagine a better place to be.

Labels: ,

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Books, Audio-Books, Bray, Stross, and some new decade thoughts

Tim Bray just wrote two entries that reference Charles Stross, far and away my favorite recent sci-fi author. He started with a reasonable review of "Saturn's Children", which is have slowly been working though as an audio-book. I've read a number of Stross's books in paperback, and happily introduced others to my addiction. Not since picking up Snow Crash, have I had such an experience with a new author. His stories are denser with contemplative ideas than many books on the non-fiction shelves. Saturn's children, to my mind, isn't his best, but that is heavily influenced by the fact that I am listening to it as an audio-book.

As audio-books go, the reading is incredibly good. I've listened to audio-books on long road-trips for years. Ever since since Nat and I read 'The Lion, the witch and the wardrobe' series to each other going to/from Burning Man, I've been an audio-book convert. The nature of the medium means that it is slower than reading. I don't have many moments that are opportune for an audio-book. I listen to pod-casts when walking the dog. Maybe if I had an iPod doc in the kitchen I'd listen more, but I usually have NPR on. I just haven't found a good habit/rhythm for audio-books.

Bray also discusses a recent essay from Mr Stross about the Google Books settlement. I haven't been following the Google Books settlement too carefully, assuming that old-media was just trying to hang on to their aging business model. Stross does a good job arguing why aspects of that business model are appropriate. He isn't arguing that things shouldn't change. He is asking how can we preserve some of the benefits of the old model. If information is free, then author's like Stross will have a damn hard time making enough money writing books to pay the bills.

I'm curious to see how this all transpires. I expect that how 'information' is priced and purchased, will continue to change dramatically. Very few things of real value are truly free. In the beginning, there were pay-walls. Then you have ads. Now they are collecting monetizable data on our behaviors. The latest evolution comes from services that make it cheap and valuable for individuals to generate content (ne twitter/gmail/search) while at the same time they are generating value by monitoring the content in aggregate. It is easy to see how smaller content (IM/email/blog-post) works in this formula. Large content, such as a short-story, or even a full-length book are more challenging. Giving it out for free doesn't compensate the author comparative to their effort. This seems similar to some of the arguemts I've been hearing about why Hulu will start charging for some shows. It is a simple value/reward problem. Do you value the content enough to justify spending your hard won cash for access? I know that I choose to buy content on regular basis, be it book, movie, or music.

The last 10 years has seen the rise of the iPod and iTunes along with their switch to DRM-free formats. It has seen the digital camera all but replace film for all but the most serious photography work, resulting in a proliferation of free content hosted online, dramatically changing the business models for stock photography. It has seen the rise of online access to video content, initially as a pay-to-download model, now in a mix of ad supported streaming and pay-per-view streaming. In 2000 everyone could self publish online, but few did. With the rise of blogging, then the social web, anyone with some internet access can claim their corner of the web, choosing to enlighten us all with their thoughts, artistry, or just entertain themselves and their friends.

What will the next 10 years bring

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Lady GaGa vs Depeche Mode

My pop fascination with Lady Gaga has now been justified by a remix of Lady Gaga's Paparazzi with Depeche Mode's Just Can't Get Enough. DJs From Mars, I thank you.

p.s. DJs From Mars MySpace page has links to more videos for similar remixes.