Archive for July, 2012

July 13, 2012

Puppet Camps Whirlwind Tour

This is a guest post by @stahnma, Community Manager at Puppet Labs

Puppet Camp

Puppet Labs is winding down the whirlwind tour of Puppet Camps for the first half 2012. Prior to 2012, the most camps we had ever done in a year was two. This year, we’ve had 12 already, with roughly 100 people at each of them. The last one of this leg is in the Windy City, Chicago, IL.

Puppet Camps have evolved from the main annual get-together for the Puppet faithful to regional events with hundreds of people at each. We’ve had amazing talks on scaling puppet, puppet in the cloud, launched PuppetDB, discussed roadmaps, and of course debated practices surrounding operations in countless ways.

At Boston camp last month, we had talks on Cloud usage with Puppet, cross-host configuration modelling prototypes, hiring in a DevOps world, using Puppet with Jenkins to deploy large developer workloads and a bunch of hallway time to answer questions. Of course there were some after-hours activities as well.

Chicago is proving no different. In this case, we have some interesting things happening. I’ll be there to give a ‘lay of the land’ talk about what’s happening inside Puppet Labs from a development perspective and what the community has been excited and concerned about. When I talk, I’m a ‘no question off limits’ kind of speaker, so the talks sometimes take a left turn here and there, but I tend to enjoy that.

Giving his first presentation at a Puppet Camp this year, is Ryan Coleman, our newest Product Owner at Puppet Labs. He’s in charge of the product and experience with Puppet Modules and our Forge. Ryan has a long road ahead of him for improvement, but is filled with passion and ideas. You may get to have real impact on the direction in this space just spending 5 minutes with him. Ryan came to this role from Professional Services where he worked with customers on Puppet installation, taught classes and wrote educational materials.

As we head into PuppetConf (our big conference Sep 27&28 in SFO), you might get some preview material at the Chicago Puppet Camp. We look forward to seeing you there!

July 2, 2012

The Eight Hats of Data Visualization by Andy Kirk

What gets measured gets managed. Sometimes however it is difficult to measure because well, at web scale, there are just too much going on. This is where data visualization can help. In this Orbitz IDEAS talk by Andy Kirk of we are presented with some powerful techniques for thinking about data in terms of how it should be visualized. Don’t forget to watch the QA at the end. It is quite informative.

Andy Kirk presents “The 8 Hats of Data Visualization Design” from Orbitz IDEAS on Vimeo.

The nature of data visualization as a truly multi-disciplinary subject introduces many challenges. You might be a creative but how are your analytical skills? Good at closing out a design but how about the initial research and data sourcing? In this talk Andy Kirk will discuss the many different ‘hats’ a visualization designer needs to wear in order to effectively deliver against these demands. It will also contextualize these duties in the sense of a data visualization project timeline. Whether a single person will fulfill these roles, or a team collaboration will be set up to cover all bases, this presentation will help you understand the requirements of any visualization problem context.

Speaker: Andy Kirk is a freelance data visualization design consultant and trainer, and editor of the website, a popular data visualization blog. After graduating from Lancaster University with a B.Sc (hons) in Operational Research, he held a number of business analysis and information management positions at some of the largest organizations in the UK. Late 2006 provided Andy with a career-changing ‘eureka’ moment when he discovered the subject of data visualization and he has subsequently passionately pursued an expertise in the subject, completing a research Masters M.A (With Distinction) at the University of Leeds along the way. In February 2010 he launched the blog with the mission of providing readers with inspiring insights into the contemporary techniques, resources, applications and best practices in this exciting subject. His consultancy work and training courses extend this ambition, helping organizations of all shapes, sizes and domains enhance the analysis and communication of their data to maximize impact. Andy is currently working on his first book, with more to follow, and has been seen speaking at a number of important conference events, most notably as judge and presenter at Malofiej 20, the 20th anniversary of the Infographics World Summit in Pamplona, Spain.