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First Australian Cloudcamp

Posted on Friday, August 28, 2009 | 2 Comments

Tonight was the first Australian Cloudcamp. I rocked along not really knowing what to expect but with an open mind.

Here is a run down.

It was directed by Dave Nielsen who flew in for the day, great effort. It was held at the Google offices and was organised by Samuel Yeats of Rejila Cloud Services and Milinda Kotelawele of Longscale.

There was a bunch of Lighting Talks which occur for 5 minutes only. These were (in the wrong order)

  • Alan Noble, Google
  • Milinda Kotelawele, LongScale
  • George Reese, enStratus
  • Samuel Yeats, Ultra Serve / Rejila Cloud Servers
  • Dr. Anna Liu, UNSW
  • Dr. James Broburg, University of Melbourne
  • someone, Unisys
  • Stu Andrews
The talks were fine. Some were to marketing based, especially the Unisys one, not the crowd for such a pitch.

Stuart sang a song about the cloud which you can see below.

After this was the unpanel time. It started with selecting a panel and then throwing up a question. Dave asked for people who were cloud experts to start with to come up for the panel, like anyone is going to offer themselves up for that. Then he said okay, if people come to you to ask cloud questions then put your hand up. Well not being shy and it being true I had to jump in at this stage.

The questions thrown up were (thanks @artr for noting them down).
  • Is the OS still relevant in the cloud?
  • How should dev tools change to be optimised to the cloud?
  • What are people willing to pay for in the cloud?
  • Why do we use security as an excuse for not adopting cloud?
  • What jurisidctions are relevant to the cloud?
  • What should devs tell the Rugby Player?
  • How long until it all gets insourced again?
The panel could then choose a topic to answer in 60 seconds. I took the what will people pay for question. My answer was that people would pay for something that was less than what they were paying now. That is if they were currently paying $X to run something not in the cloud, and they could move it to the cloud for 20% less, that that is something that they would pay for. Also people would pay for things then need on the cloud. Examples of things they need are security, SLA, those higher level services. Did have not much time to think of the answer and it sounded okay as it got referred to a few more times during the night and on twitter.

Here are some bad photos of me in the unpanel.

George Reese on the #cloudcampsyd unpanel on Twitpic

Fuzzy @rodos talking commercialism. #cloudcampsyd unpanel on Twitpic

After this topics were suggest and breakout rooms decided. People then went off to their topics of choice and discussed. There were two rounds of topics at 45 minutes each. At the end there was bit of a summation and then off to the pub.

So what did I think of the event?
  • It was good to see so many people there, I think it was about 100.
  • There was a variety of communities represented, developers, vendors, end users, enterprise. Yes I was wearing a suit but I came straight from work.
  • There are a lot of people still trying to get their head around cloud. I think a few of the people who are a bit longer in the tooth around cloud would have liked some deeper discussion, however with the whole unconference method or whatever it is I suppose its majority rules, speak up or suggest a topic thats really relevant to you.
  • I do think the format works, Dave had to do a bit of explaining of the process which probably annoyed any people who had been to other events like this but helped us newbies. Now that the first one has been run this part can probably get a lot less as more will be familuar with the process.
  • It was good to talk to some interesting people who are working in the space.
  • Was amazed that three people said they knew me from my blog, never expected that to ever happen! Ran into one guy who works for the same company I do. Also ran into a customer who was at an event the other week which I was the speaker for, on Cloud.
  • Next time I should take a notepad and take notes (which I normally do) as there were some interesting statements which are now lost.
Some linkages. Twitter search. Evernote summary from @artr. Kate's blog post Camping in the clouds #cloudcampsyd. Some good photos.

My recomendation. Find a http://www.cloudcamp.com/ in your area and give one a try!


P.S. Its now 1:30am. This is a great test of me being at VMworld next week. Full days, out at night and then trying to get some interesting record of whats occurred out before I forget it all. However next week I will have my computer with me, my camera and my flip video so content should be a lot better. Lets see how it goes.


  1. Thanks for the summary and pics!

    Here's my notes from the scaling session:

    Scaling in the cloud
    - need to break application up to fit into cloud nodes
    - different application needs: CPU, disk, network
    - different cloud providers have different limitations on those resources
    - timeliness of data - some jobs can be queued in the cloud (ie: using SQS), others jobs are realtime
    - difficult to scale enterprise database in cloud (ie: oracle)
    - how to get large data sets in the cloud? amazon lets you send a HDD to upload to S3
    - latency problems for Australians using us-based clouds. Ie: web apps must focus on rendering performance to mitigate latency
    - migrating to different clouds, should you architect for that?
    - benchmarking the cloud before deployment?
    - when to decide to just deploy more
    Servers than spend time increasing code performance


  2. Hi Rodney,
    Thanks for your contribution at the event last night, and good to meet you.

    We'll put some video up of the event sometime next week and I'll shoot you a link.



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