The Backchannel: Node-Powered Foosball, File System Latency and Building the Cloud

May 27, 2011 - by jacksonwest

When not busy updating Node.js to version 0.4.8, Ryan Dahl loves that Hamburg-based agency Sinner Schrader modified their office foosball table to keep track of games, post scores to Twitter and track "league" results over time -- and powered the system with Node.js. Jealous? We are. But it's all open source so that you can roll your own!

Of course, Joyent's core competency is building the cloud to connect the foosball tables of the future to. For more on using Node.js to build data-intensive, real-time (DIRTy) applications, check out Isaac Schlueter's slides from his "Node Digs DIRT" talk at Next11 last week. Building DIRTy apps also requires an understanding of performance details like file system latency, and for that no one better to turn to than Brendan Gregg.

He spoke to BayLISA last week about Dynamic Tracing, including using DTrace with OpenSolaris and beyond for monitoring system and application performance, and if you missed it you can watch the video or download the slides. He's also been publishing a series of in-depth posts on understanding and inspecting file system latency -- parts one, two, three and four are up, with a fifth on the way.

If you're into file system latency, also check out Dave Pacheco's demonstration of using heat maps to monitor latency in an application running on our platform. And Mark Mayo sat down for a webinar to discuss how developers can best build applications to succeed when their cloud provider fails in "Architecting a Drama-Free Cloud."

If you're more interested in the forest and less interested in the individual trees, our Bryan Cantrill joined Dell's Dan Choquette and Intel's Rekha Raghu for the CloudBuilders webcast "Addressing Industry Challenges with Cloud Computing" to discuss how the cloud can be leveraged for IT solutions and innovation. The talk provides a great overview of how Joyent's SmartDataCenter software works together with Dell and Intel's hardware to enable any company to get into the cloud.


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