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The Language of Compression

Leif Walsh of Two Sigma talks to us about the importance of compression in data storage.

· Database Zone

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Storage. Everyone needs it. Whether your data is in MySQL, a NoSQL, or somewhere in the cloud, with ever-growing data volumes – along with the need for SSDs to cut latency and replication to provide insurance – an organization’s storage footprint is an important place to look for savings. That’s where compression comes in (squeeze!) to save disk space.

Two Sigma software engineer Leif Walsh speaks the language of compression. Fluently. In fact, he’ll be speaking on that exact subject September 22 during the Percona Live conference in Amsterdam. I asked him about his talk, and about Amsterdam, the other day. Here’s what he had to say.

* * *

Tom: Hi Leif, how will your talk help IT decision-makers cut through the marketing mumbo-jumbo on what’s important to focus on and what is not
Leif: My talk will have three lessons aimed at those making storage decisions for their company:

  1. What are the key factors to consider when evaluating storage options, and how can they affect your bottom line?  This is not only how storage tech influences your hardware, operations, and management costs, but also how it can facilitate new development initiatives and cut time-to-market for your products.
  2. How should you read benchmarks and marketing materials about storage technology?  You’ll learn what to look for in promotional material, and how to think critically about whether that material is applicable to your business needs.
  3. What’s the most effective way to communicate with storage vendors about your application’s requirements?  A lot of time can be spent in the early stages of a relationship in finding a common language for users and vendors to have meaningful discussions about users’ needs and vendors’ capacity to meet those needs.  With the tools you’ll learn in my talk, you’ll be able to accelerate quickly to the high-bandwidth conversations you need to have in order to make the right decision, and consequently, you’ll be empowered to evaluate more choices to find the best one faster.

Tom: In addition to IT decision-makers, who else should attend your session and what will they take away afterward?
Leif: My talk is primarily about the language that everyone in the storage community should be using to communicate. Therefore, storage vendors should attend to get ideas for how  to express their benchmarks and their system’s properties more effectively, and application developers and operations people will learn strategies for getting better support and for making a convincing case to the decision makers in their own company.

Tom: Which session(s) are you most looking forward to besides your own?
Leif: Sam Kottler is a good friend and an intensely experienced systems engineer with a dynamic and boisterous personality, so I can’t wait to hear more about his experiences with Linux tuning.

As one of the original developers of TokuMX, I’ll absolutely have to check out Stephane’s talk about it, but I promise not to heckle. Charity Majors is always hilarious and has great experiences and insights to share, so I’ll definitely check out her talk too.

* * *

Catch Leif’s talk at Percona Live in Amsterdam September 21-23. Enter the promo code “BlogInterview” at registration and save €20! Register now!

This interviewed appeared on the Percona blog and was conducted by Tom Diedrich.

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Topics:
database ,data storage ,data compression

Published at DZone with permission of Peter Zaitsev, DZone MVB. See the original article here.

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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