May 2010 Boston Azure Meeting

May 27, 2010 Boston Azure Meeting

1. Michael Stiefel on use of relational databases in the cloud

At the May 27, 2010 Boston Azure meeting, Michael Stiefel was the main speaker. Michael gave a talk (slides here) on when you might want to use SQL Azure vs. “NoSQL” Azure in the cloud.

Some key phrases, highlights (very rough!):

  • “Latency exists” – you need to care about it – and the speed of light matters – analogy to digging a hole: how fast you move the shovel
  • “Bandwidth is limited” – you need to care about it – with hole-digging analogy, this is the size of shovel
  • Computational Power gets cheaper faster than Network Bandwidth
  • Connectivity is Not Always Available – welcome to the world of occasionally-connected devices like laptops on airplanes and the boom in mobile devices
  • Waiting for Data slows computation
  • Human Interaction – thinking time – can add latency to any operation
  • Economics dictates scale out, not up
  • Availability or Consistency? What is the Cost of an Apology?
  • How consistent do you need to be? Weigh cost of consistency vs. cost oc of lost business… Business Decision!
  • Design for Eventual Consistency

The meeting had around 25 people in attendance.

2. Discussion of Boston Azure Project

As part of the May meeting we discussed a proposal for the Boston Azure Project – an open source, collaborative, Azure-hosted coding project to “gently overengineer the web site” – by Azurizing it. The proposal met with enough enthusiasm that it was adopted and we are moving forward with it.

3. Next: June 24 Meeting is All About The Code

In the June 24 meeting (RSVP here) we will get started on the Boston Azure Project. We will spend from 6:00 – 8:30 talking about it, organizing, and getting started. Bring your Azure-powered laptop!


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