antirez 3394 days ago. 262518 views.
I’m back home, after a non easy trip, since to travel from San Francisco to Sicily is kinda NP complete: there are no solutions involving less than three flights. However it was definitely worth it, because the Redis Conference 2015 was very good, SF was wonderful as usually and I was able to meet with many interesting people. Here I’ll limit myself to writing a short account of the conference, but the trip was also an incredible experience because I discovered old and new friends, that are not just smart programmers, but also people I could imagine being my friends here in Sicily. I never felt alone while I was 10k kilometers away from my home.

The conference was organized by RackSpace in a magistral way, with RedisLabs, Heroku, and Hulu, sponsoring it as well. I can’t say thank you enough times to everybody. Many people traveled from different parts of US and outside US to SF just for a couple of days, the venue was incredibly cool, and everything organized in the finest details.

There was even an incredible cake for the Redis 6th birthday :-)

However the killer features of the conference were, the number and the quality of the attenders (mostly actual Redis users), around 250 people, and the quality of the talks. The conference was free, even if it did not looked like a free conference at all, at any level. An incredible stage where to talk, very high quality food, plenty of space. All this honestly helped to create a setup for interesting exchanges. Everybody was using Redis for something, to get actual things done, and a lot of people shared their experiences. Among the talks I found Hulu and Heroku ones extremely interesting, because they covered details about different use cases and operational challenges. I also happen to agree with Bill Andersen (from RackSpace) vision on benchmarking Redis in a use-case oriented fashion, even if I missed the initial part of his talk because I was being interviewed, but the cool thing is, there will be recordings of the talks, so it will be possible for everybody to watch them when available at the conf site, which is, http://redisconference.com

I was approached by several VeryLargeCompanies recounting stories of how they are using or are going to use Redis to do VeryLargeUseCase. Basically at this point Redis is everywhere.

Redis Conference was a big gift to the Redis community… and in some way it shows very well how much there is a Redis outside Redis, I mean, at this point it has a life outside the borders of the server and client libraries repositories. It is a technology with many users that exchange ideas and that work with it in different ways: internally to companies to provide it as a technology to cover a number of use cases, and also in the context of cloud providers, that are providing it as a service to other companies.

One thing I did not liked was Matt Stancliff talk. He tried to uncover different problems in the Redis development process, and finally proposed the community to replace me as the project leader, with him. In my opinion what Matt actually managed to do was to cherry-pick from my IRC, Twitter and Github issues posts in a very unfair way, in order to provide a bad imagine of myself. I think this was a big mistake. Moreover he did the talk as the last talk, not providing a right to reply. Matt and I happen to be persons with very different visions in many ways, however Redis is a project I invested many years into, and I’m not going to change my vision, I’m actually afraid I merged some code under pressure that I now find non well written and designed.

What prevents Redis for becoming a monoculture is its license, if the community at some point really believes it is possible to do much better, or simply to do things in a very different way, some forks will appear, and darwinian selection will work to make sure we have the best Redis possible. Technical leadership is a reward for the work you are capable to do, is not asked at conferences. Moreover technology is not just code, is also about human interactions, and life is too short to interact with people we don’t share the same fundamental values of what a good behavior is.

Well, even if this left some bitter taste, overall the Redis Conference was a magical experience, and even Matt talk actually helped me to understand what to do in the future and what I want for this project. Thank you to who made it possible and to all the attenders, I hope to see you again next year.
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