BigQuery & new users – the top “WTF!?” moments

“What the Fudge?”

I use Google BigQuery a lot. On a daily basis I run dozens of queries, use it to build massively scalable data pipelines for our clients, and regularly help new users navigating it for the first time. Suffice it to say I’m somewhat accustomed to its little quirks. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the new users who are commonly left scratching their heads, and shouting “What the fudge!?” at their monitors.

Here’s the top three WTFs that I regularly hear from new BigQuery users:

Gobbling up big-ish data for lunch using BigQuery

Beers + ‘WSPR’ = fun

To this day, I’m a firm believer in the benefits of simple, informative, and spontaneous conversations with my colleagues – at least with the ones who can stand me long enough to chat with me . Chewing the fat with other like minded folks over a beer or two is a bloody good thing. It’s how ideas are born, knowledge is shared, and relationships are formed. It’s an important aspect of any business that is sadly all too often overlooked.

Google Cloud Dataproc and the 17 minute train challenge

multiple-seats

My work commute

My commute to and from work on the train is on average 17 minutes. It’s the usual uneventful affair, where the majority of people pass the time by surfing their mobile devices, catching a few Zs, or by reading a book. I’m one of those people who like to check in with family & friends on my phone, and see what they have been up to back home in Europe, while I’ve been snug as a bug in my bed.

Stay with me here folks.

But aside from getting up to speed with the latest events from back home, I also like to catch up on the latest tech news, and in particular what’s been happening in the rapidly evolving cloud area. And this week, one news item in my AppyGeek feed immediately jumped off the screen at me. Google have launched yet another game-changing product into their cloud platform big data suite.

It’s called Cloud Dataproc.

The Joys of Redis

ren_and_stimpy_by_buttercupnergal

“In our (admittedly limited) experience, Redis is so fast that the slowest part of a cache lookup is the time spent reading and writing bytes to the network” – stackoverflow.com

Can Databases Be Exciting To Work With?

It’s very rare that a project can cause an engineer to get excited about the prospect of working with a database they’ve never worked with previously, especially when it’s a relational one. That mainly boils down to the fact that the majority of them are clunky monstrosities that are painfully slow and cause us to grimace at the thought of having to integrate them into our applications, not to mention having to piece together gnarly and over engineered SQL statements.

Simple Session-Sharing in Tomcat Cluster Using the Session-in-Cookie Pattern Part 1: The Basics

Apache TomcatIn a recent project we needed to deploy application changes to a Tomcat cluster without outage to the end user. To accomplish this the Tomcat sessions needed to be shared across the nodes. We opted to implement a variant of the Session-In-Cookie pattern popular in the Rails framework, a simple solution to session sharing. This blog shows how to implement this Session-In-Cookie pattern in Java.