Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Social area at JAX Conf - driven by the Liberty Profile and a Raspberry Punnet

This year, IBM will not only be the Gold sponsor at JAX, it will also be sponsoring and running the new Social Area at the conference which will be a place for people to chill, have breakouts, see and present demos, have interviews by the JAX enter and developer works teams and also get a bunch of info around the conference from a web front end which I'll be developing.


The web front end will be powered by a mac mini as the load distributor, and a cluster of raspberry pis, each running the Liberty Profile as the application server our webapps will run on. At this point I should mention that IBM do not own all these Raspberry Pis, it owns one, just like the vast majority.  We're borrowing two other personal Pis kindly on loan by Ross Pavitt and Kevin Turner, fellow IBMers - thanks guys!  If you're attending JAX Conf in San Francisco and want your Pi to be part of the biggest Pi-experiment to around 1000 people, let me know, via a tweet/comment or bring it along on the day and we'll connect it up and it can join the punnet and serve content to the whole conference.

The other reason the mac mini will be in place is to monitor load and performance, and step in where necessary to bail out the punnet during busy times :)  I want to take a photo of each device and make sure that when a user get's a webpage back, they see the physical device which served up the page, be it a Pi or a mac mini!  The aim to to get pages viewable on mobiles, tablets and laptops.

So, what will this social area web content provide?  Here are my ideas so far:
  • A tweet stream following the JAX Conf hash tag
  • A twitter word cloud, showing what's hot at the moment, one for the day and one for the last 30 mins
  • A mash up with Lanyrd for people to engage with feedback on sessions
  • Latest timetable info - what's on now and next
  • Breaking news/changes from the JAX Conf team
  • Info on Social area demos, interviews, breakouts, Q&As etc, as they happen
These are just some of my thoughts which I aim to implement over the next week and set up on the cluster.  The reason for this post though is to get your feedback - what do you want to see up on the Social Area site? What have you found useful info in the past at conferences that you'd love to see here?  Or do you think we've got a good set?

Please let me know at @sjmaple or comment on this post.  Thanks for your feedback and look forward to see you there!  Note: we may have some spare tickets to the event, which we'd look to reward feedback with! :o)

If you want to attend the event, here's a code which will give you a great discount on ticket price:

JAXIBM1 Get $50 off a 1 day pass
JAXIBM2 Get $100 off a 2 day pass
JAXIBM3 Get $200 off a 4 day pass


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