Speaker Interview: Jeremy Sands

Get your motor running: Jeremy Sands is giving a talk at SCALE 12X on "The Hotrodder's Guide to Maximum Performance LAMP" on Saturday. The SCALE Team caught up with Jeremy and asked him a few questions.

Q: Could you please introduce yourself and tell us a little about your background?

A: I more or less have four spheres of activity through which most people know me. Firstly I am more or less the lead masochist for the SouthEast LinuxFest conference. While SCaLE is tremendous, I wanted to afford people in the Deep South the opportunity to have a similar event without having to drive 10 hours to Columbus, OH to go to OLF (another tremendous event) or fly to LAX. Secondly, and this is where most of the expertise in my talk comes from, I have stopped “working for the man” and make my living through my college sports websites. The big one is CSNbbs.com … a very large message board centered around Division I-A college football and basketball. Third, I'm fairly active in the liberty political circles (RLC, LP, GOA, EFF, CATO, etc). Lastly, I'm a ham (W3GTS) with a big interest in meshnets and Molniya Orbit amateur radio satellites.

Q: You're giving a talk on "The Hotrodder's Guide To Maximum Performance LAMP." Without tipping your hand on the actual talk, can you give us an idea of what we might expect?

A: Sure. The talk is basically a roadmap or guideline for where to spend your time, design considerations, and trade-offs for running web services and particularly websites. Plan today, know where you are going, and be prepared to avoid immense heartburn in the future. If you are looking for a deep dive into one or two specific technologies, then this is not the talk for you. If you are looking to be able to form a cohesive game plan for the future and manage your growth effectively, then this talk IS for you.

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: I've been to SCaLE every year but one since SCaLE 8x in order to network for the SouthEast LinuxFest and peek behind the scenes to see how an event of SCaLE's size is ran. Quite simply SCaLE is the best run community open source conference in North America. I'll be quite happy if someday the SouthEast LinuxFest is even half as good as SCaLE. As somebody who knows very well what it takes to pull off an event like SCaLE, it is jaw dropping how well SCaLE is ran and the quality with which the event is ran. Even little things that most people don't notice like running phase 3 power to booths ... that is VERY impressive and most people don't even think about things like that.

Q: Are you involved in open source in any way other than the SouthEast LinuxFest?

A: Yes. I contribute where I can in Gentoo, though I'm not a developer. I also have a podcast I do with a Gentoo developer where we review Linux distros and how they suit different use cases. It is called DistroCast, and it is somewhat unfit for public consumption and released approximately “when you least expect it.”

Q: Is there anything else you'd like to add?

A: If there are any USC-West fans reading this... I'd just like to say: 2012 Sun Bowl. :) Go Jackets!

[SCALE Team interview by Larry Cafiero]