You know you are at developer conference for IBM when one of the topics is “Running Minecraft on System Z.” The obvious question would be why would you do this and the answer was “because you can.”
I spent Tuesday at dev@interconnect, a set of sessions that focus on independent developers, encouraging them to use IBM’s offering. Without going into a lot of detail, here’s a few of the more interesting things that I got to experience.
Think speed dating only you move from geek to geek and they teach you the essentials of technology. Learn ten techniques in 2 hours.
5 Growth Hacks by Sandy Carter
Sandy Carter (@sandy_carter) shared her insights on growth hacking (strategies for startups to enhance their growth). This included giving away free gifts – something that can be powerful if it gives the users a feeling of getting something that is of value. IBM itself gave developers participating in their events a combined $120,000 of credit for use of Bluemix and SoftLayer services.
Grady Booch on Architecture
Grady Booch, an IBM Fellow and veteran software engineer who has probably built more systems than anyone on that floor, gave a talk on building systems and the pitfalls of going from small systems to bigger systems. Not surprisingly it was about architecture and the perils of not being aware of good architecture principles.
At the lounge you could experience technologies – from the funny (talking about programming robots to interact with the cat in my home) to the playful. I managed to get a respectable 5th place in racing jetboats on a virtual water course – writing Java in an event based race AI. One thing I found quite interesting was Node-Red, a graphic development interface to wire up the Internet of Things, based on Node.js and available on Bluemix of course.
The evening event rounded out in good developer style with game booths at one end and speed talk at the other one. Lenart Goedhart from EA talked about their trials and tribulations of putting RealRacing, a massive multiplayer game, online. He talked how they evaluated and used memcache, moved from MySQL to Redis and how they used tools to track test and track performance. This is where Ryan Baxter, developer advocate at IBM talked about putting Minecraft on System z.
If you ever get a chance to attend one of these events, take a break from the keynotes and breakouts one day and check out the dev section. You’ll have fun, and you just might learn something new while you do it.
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