Donnie Berkholz's Story of Data

What will I cover at RedMonk?

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As promised, here’s some of the things I want to focus on. My interests are all over the map, so this is just a partial list:

  • Data & analytics. Whether the data’s big, small, or in-between, I love working with it to extract new insights and understanding how others are doing the same. I’m very interested in the ways people cope with and learn from huge amounts of data, whether it’s structured or unstructured. But even on the small scale, there’s a lot you can learn if you apply the right methods. My experience has given me the background in experimental design, data analysis, and statistics to do precisely that.
  • IT management, virtualization, cloud, & DevOps. During my 5 years in Oregon, I was closely involved with sysadmins at the Open Source Lab. The OSL hosts servers for major open-source projects including Gentoo Linux (prompting my relationship with them), the Apache Software Foundation, numerous other Linux distributions, and & the Linux Foundation. Interacting with the OSL folks on a daily basis gave me a deep interest in the technologies involved in managing and scaling servers.
  • Open-source software. I’ve spent the past 8 years working in OSS projects of all sizes, from 200+ (as mentioned) down to tens (e.g. X.Org) or even just a couple of people (burrow-owl, proteingeometry). Outside of those, I have a broader view of the free- and open-source software world through my participation in the FLOSS Foundations group. I’ve got an insider perspective on how open-source projects operate and look forward to applying that here.
  • Community. My positive and negative experiences leading Gentoo Linux and working with the Google Summer of Code have given me a great respect for the power of community and culture. It can make or break companies or open-source projects. For that reason, I plan to spend some time on the cultures of companies, OSS projects, and the communities around them.
  • Mobile. It’s pretty clear at this point that there’s an inevitable flow toward open standards and technologies, even within closed app ecosystems. Furthermore, we’re seeing a continuing convergence of more and more functions onto single mobile devices and a migration of functionality to more mobile places. I’m also interested in the re-use of the same technologies in multiple scales and niches (e.g. web technologies like JavaScript and HTML5 used in apps for Windows 8, GNOME 3, and iOS).

That should be enough to give you an idea of my interests, but if you think I might want to hear more about what you’re doing, please do get in touch regardless of whether it’s on the above list.


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