Conference notes: Craft Budsapest day 1

Today is first day of Craft in Budapest. Very hot day, same location as in previous years (Hungarian Railway History Park), and packed as usual.

I’ll add some notes on the talks that I’m attending and update later with references.

Keynote: Why the Fuss about Serverless by Simon Wardley

Wardly constructs an argument pointing that a Serverless, being the commoditization of the code running infrastructure will push all to evolve in that direction. This is analog to cloud having commoditized computing resources.

The argument is constructed on top of maps, which are in his line of thought is a better tool for context analysis and understanding — more specifically, value chain mappings. Not judging his conclusions, the maps are by far the take-away from his talk and are definitely worth looking into and obviously has been turned in to product.

Some other mentions include:

  • Blah strategy
  • Strategy Cycle (Sun Tzu)
  • OODA loop (John Boyd)
  • Map vs Story vs SWOT
  • Red Queen Effect (Van Valen)
  • FIST – fast, innexpensive, simple, tiny
  • Boiling Frogs

Bad marks to the organizers for allowing the sponsors’ area to have such loud chatter noise. At points, was hard do focus on the keynote.

Building with Blockchains: Better Distributed Applications by John Feminella

Then I go to the orange tent with talk presenting (yet another) overview of blockchain. The presentation style was probably the best I’ve seen — for the non academically inclined — giving me the impression that the speaker actually knew what he was talking about.

Very little new on this regard, including the common places of decentralization of control over a currency being a good thing — obviously without any justification. This is not an economics talk, for sure, and is easily visible that many proponents of the downfall of central banking systems do not have an understanding of what central banks provide to a financial system beyond cash. To the (partial) credit of the speaker, when asked if he thought crypto currencies would in the next years eliminate the need for central banks, his reply was that if would potentially complement it, instead of replacing it.

I wish for a technical talk about blockchain/cryptocurrencies that would address maturely the actual economic aspects of money.

The key take away of this talk was an outline of conditions for suitability of blockchain as a backing technology for an application, summarized as the questions:

  • Can you wait for consensus?
  • Is blockchain better than a DB for your use case?
  • Does your storage need to be distributed?
  • Do you need to trust people?

Break your event chains! Complex event flows in distributed systems

Guide Refactorings With Behavioral Code Analysis by Adam Tornhill

The first talk after lunch. (|Honestly Craft? Brussel’s sprouts on a conference?)