A Senior Developer Advocate for Microsoft, Brian Benz wants to win the hearts and minds of Scala developers by showing them first class cloud features. He’s focused on showing how Microsoft Azure is delivering first class IoT features for distributed systems.
In advance of the workshop, “Understanding Akka Cluster Through Raspberry-Pi Cluster Visualization”, we spoke to Brian about his developer journey and asked some questions about his workshop at Scala Days New York.
What’s your background and what does your current role involve?
I’m a Senior Cloud Developer Advocate at Microsoft, helping Java and Scala developers to get the most out of Azure. Before Joining Microsoft, I was a solution architect, consultant, developer, author and presenter at IBM, Deloitte, and other companies. This background helps me to better understand the requirements from developers for cloud infrastructures.
What’s the biggest highlight of your career so far?
Working at Microsoft on Azure – I’m amazed that Microsoft has been able to adapt to the new world of open source and the cloud while successfully maintaining their traditional businesses and customers. I’m thrilled to be a small part of that transformation so far, and look forward to developments in the future. While Microsoft continues to reinvent itself and actively embraces open source communities and various programming languages I enjoy having the opportunity to show how our technological advances help to put successful projects into production.
Why did you pick Scala and Akka and what kind of problems do they solve for you?
What’s the most important challenge Scala and Akka developers are facing today?
I think that more generally the biggest challenge of application developers today is to choose a runtime and deployment platform that fits their needs. While application servers or other centralized infrastructures provided a lot of infrastructure services and SPIs to developers, they are not the ultimate runtime for distributed microservices. -There is a gap that has to be closed between development, platforms, frameworks, and additional cloud services. Finding the right mix that is cost effective and reliable is a challenge; that also applies to Reactive Systems built on Akka with Scala. This gets even more complicated with additional external systems or devices like IoT infrastructures require.
Who should attend your workshop at Scala Days and why?
I’ve talked about distributed cloud systems before. The fact that applications need to provide a fault-tolerant decentralized peer-to-peer based cluster on top has many developers struggling about how to implement it. In the workshop at Scala Days New York, Eric, Kiki and I explain the inner workings of Akka Cluster and help you build a strong understanding of clustering with the help of a powerful visualization on a real RasberryPi cluster. On top we’re going to use the Azure IoT Hub and integrate it with Akka Streams.
Don’t miss Brian Benz and his workshop “Understanding Akka Cluster Through Raspberry-Pi Cluster Visualization” with Kiki Carter, Principal Enterprise Architect at Lightbend, Inc. and Brian Benz, Sr. Cloud Developer Advocate at Microsoft, on June 19th at Scala Days in New York. Workshop spaces are limited, so book your ticket now.