Category Archives: Personal

Oct Recap: It’s Been a Trip

I have recently been doing a lot of travel for work. I know that for some, this amount of travel is routine, but for myself, it has been pretty awesome. In the month of October, I have visited 2 places I have never been to before. But before I start with the picture show and going into the cool thing that I saw, I think I need to start out with how all this happened.

The adventure first started out with an acceptance of a speaking proposal at ContainerCon EU 2016 in Berlin. Yes, you read that right! I was pretty dang stoked to be selected to speak at the event and also to help lead the Apache Mesos Hands-on Lab at the Open Source Storage Summit. The experience was unbelievable and was also a big validation on some of the things that I have been working on; namely a ScaleIO Framework for Apache Mesos which just so happened to be announced at the conference. I was definitely a little nervous about the date/time of my speaking session, last day and last time slot, but the turn out was still fantastic! For those that are interested, my talk focused around Software Defined Storage and Container Schedulers. You can view my slide deck on GitHub here.

CC Berlin

Now on to the fun stuff! Before heading to the conference, a few of my coworkers and I stopped in Munich. I got to check out a bunch of stuff ranging from museums talking about World War 2 to sampling local cuisine (as in eating a lot of freaking sausages). Nothing was cooler though than going to the original Oktoberfest in a legit beer tent. The place was freaking amazing and although I am not a beer fan, I partook in drinking and had a blast.

Interesting side note, Oktoberfest isn’t technically an event… it’s actually a place. Mind Blown! When we picked up our tickets, we asked the concierge “How can we get to Oktoberfest?” They looked at us like we were complete mouth-breathers and smiled. They explained and pointed out where Oktoberfest actually was on the map, explained significance of the area where Oktoberfest takes place, and just told us we could get into any cab and say “Take us to Oktoberfest!”. We found that super funny… a little too much, but it was epic!

Oktoberfest in Munich

We then all took a train from Munich to Berlin, did the conference thing, and then hopped back home. We kicked back for less than a week and flew to Hawaii for work. Yes, that isn’t joke. And also not a joke, I have never been to Hawaii even though I live in the Los Angeles area which is just a small jump over the ocean. Our team, {code} by Dell EMC, was actually sponsoring the World Drone Racing Championships in Hawaii. Super cool! In all seriousness though, drones are emerging into a multi-multi-billion (yes, with a B) dollar industry with commercial applications like performing land surveys and the amount of data being collected by these drones is growing exponentially which is where Dell EMC comes in. Putting the business stuff aside for a second, after having tried it first hand using my Inductrix beginner drone with a cam and the Marvel Vision FPV Googles, flying drones is pretty cool!


What’s up next? I will be continuing the work that I have been doing on the ScaleIO Framework and will undoubtedly have additional surprises in store hopefully fairly soon! (With a blog post to accompany it!) If you happened to miss the launch of the ScaleIO Framework, you can find more information including a demo on the official {code} by Dell EMC blog.


LinuxCon ContainerCon Japan: Extended Edition

My recap of LinuxCon ContainerCon Japan just went live on the EMC {code} Blog and it talks about some of the things that happened at the conference as well as talks about some key takeaways. I definitely encourage you to go and take a look at the article. This happens to be my first blog post on the official EMC {code} Blog. Yay!

On to the Fun Stuff

It has been some time since I have been to Japan, but going back was a lot of fun. Below is a not so serious look at Japan outside of the seriousness of the conference.

Walking through one of Japan’s many multi-story electronic stores, I found a $1300 Rice Cooker. Yes, that amount isn’t a typo. I hope that thing washes my car too for that price.

The $1300 Rice Cooker

We found this Okinawan restaurant and found this guy parked outside.

Dragon Holding Some Sake

And in that bar, I got an opportunity to try Habushu which is a Japanese Liquor made with a snake in the bottle (picture below). Yes, there is a snake inside. No joke. Habushu is named after the habu snake, Trimeresurus flavoviridis, which belongs to the pit viper family and is closely related to the rattlesnake and copperhead. (according to wikipedia)

Habushu Liquor

On our last night, we visited the world famous Golden Gai in Shinjuku. It is roughly six alleys connected together that has over 200 tiny shanty-style bars. Each bar is large enough to hold 5-8 people max with most of the ones we saw being about the size of a 5ft x 7ft room.

Golden Gai in Shinjuku

Last but not least, when you are tried of eating conference bento boxes everyday and you need a change… you get KFC. That also isn’t a joke either. By the way, KFC is waaaaay better in Japan than in the states. Just saying!



Who is David vonThenen?

Hi! My name is David vonThenen. I am a Developer Advocate with EMC {code}. Yes, that EMC that makes all the storage products we have all come to know and love. I have recently been given the opportunity to join a fairly new group, the {code} team, within EMC that lives and breathes Open Source by making contributions back to the community. Part of this new journey includes a lot of outward facing collaboration with users of projects that EMC has open sourced but also a lot of collaboration with other developer and community projects out there. That leads me to my first blog post!

Who am I? I have been working in the technology industry for many years now in varying disciplines including: semiconductors, mainframes, storage area networks (FC, iSCSI, FCoE), distributed systems, backup/recovery solutions, virtualization (VMware), cloud, and etc. All these roles have been in your traditional enterprise corporate environment where you get some requirements from some product marketing monkey to tell you how they interpreted what the customer wants. Ever play a game of telephone? Now try it with a non-technical person armed with only acronyms. Yea, usually doesn’t go well but I digress.

When I heard about EMC {code}, I jump at the opportunity to take how I developed software and completely turn that world upside-down. Gone are the days of those marketing monkeys, gone are those silly 6 to 12 month development cycles, and gone are the closed proprietary software solutions. One of the biggest draws for me going Open Source was the collaboration with developers and users and the other social aspects of this change, like the idea of speaking at meetups. A lot of software engineer would say “whaaaa?” Yup, even the simple side of social media like tweeting what I have been working on without having the fear of exposing some critical feature before the release or tipping our hand to competitors.

Social Interaction What?

Another thing I am looking forward is working with all the new technology out there. Docker, Mesos, and etc. I have been predominately known as a C++ and Java Spring developer, but I am very interested in learning some of the new modern languages out there. I just recently picked up Golang by going through some online tutorials, reading a couple of books (yea, I still do that), and recreating several projects that I quite frequently need to do in C++ or Spring land by making the Golang equivalent. Looking forward to my first real project using it.

What about outside work?

Well enough of that boring crap. I got started with programming around the time I was in high school, but was self-taught programmer primarily in C++ making my own video games. One of my favorite subjects in high school was chemistry so I did start off as a chemistry major in college (hence, the Breaking Bad motif of my blog), but about 2 years in, I realized that I couldn’t leave programming, computers and technology behind. So I ended up double majoring in Computer Science as well. I love poker (particularly no limit Texas Hold’em), I actually enjoy going to the gym and have a home gym for when I can’t make it, I am the proud owner of 2 boxer dogs (Sydney and Izzy), huge fan of aged Irish Whiskey (love Glenfiddich 18 or Jameson for your casual kind of drinking), I am a foodie who will try anything once, and I am one of those car guys who drives a muscle car.

Sydney and Izzy

Now what?

Well I hope that you stick around and visit my blog every once in a while as I plan to blog on various topics relating to technology, some of the things that I am working or even things that interest me. If you happen to live in the Orange or Los Angeles County area, I have been active in the MeetUp community. You can also find me on Twitter, LinkedIn and GitHub.