Speaker Interview: Dan Hopkins

Lights, camera . . . wait. Dan Hopkins talks about "Actors: Not Just for Movies Anymore," on SCALE 13x Sunday at 3, and deals with clusters getting bigger, yet we continue to use architectures that worked for websites built during the '90s Internet scale. The SCALE Team took a few minutes to talk with Dan about his presentation.

Q: Can you please introduce yourself and tell me a little bit about your background?

A: I've been working in the software industry as a developer for the last 12 years. In a previous life I've done web development, enterprise consulting and worked with a crack team of ruby developers. At VictorOps I've been given the leeway to build an architecture that I'm truly proud of using Actors and I'm hoping to share some of my learnings over the last two years.

Q: I saw you are giving a talk on Actors: Not Just for Movies Anymore. Without tipping your hand on the actual talk, can you give us an idea of what we might expect?

A: I'm going to discuss a fundamental tradeoff that software teams make on the outset of project. Embracing concurrency programming or ignoring it. I believe that building architecture around tools that embrace concurrency is a wonderful alternative viewpoint worthy of discussion.

Q: Over the past few years the term "Big Data" has been misused, abused and has transformed into a buzzword for the media. What are your thoughts on the term "Big Data"?

A: I think that a lot of the tools that are being developed for the "Big Data" movement have been shown to be useful for teams with smaller amounts of data / less data velocity. I'm OK with everyone glomming onto the term because it seems to be positively impacting our industry.

Q: Is this your first visit to SCALE? If so, what are your expectations? If not, can you give us your impressions of the event?

A: It is my first time and I'm not sure what to expect. I've heard good things from Ilan and thought I'd come.

Q: IT is an ever changing industry, every year there is another new specialty to focus one's career. For someone like yourself who specialises in a particular field, could you give some advice for aspiring Junior Admins who are interest into getting into your line of work?

A: Be curious, always ask questions and be a sponge.

[SCALE Team interview by Sean McCabe]