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Tom Limoncelli
Works at StackExchange.com
Attended Drew University
Lives in Bloomfield, NJ
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Tom Limoncelli

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I'm digging the #robotrubio meme (search twitter for the hashtag). I hear that by 2018 we should expect a fully self-driving Rubio from either Google or Tesla.
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That would require the system to be autonomous. There's probably not enough to work with there.

Tom Limoncelli

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Chilling out to the new Artemis Seven album....

Highly recommended if you want to mellow out!

http://artemis7.bandcamp.com/album/worlds-within-7-or-gift-more-2016-lp
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Tom Limoncelli

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Is anyone else watching Colony on USANetwork?

I think the answer is "no".

That said... if I was writing it, here's how I'd have the first season end: We'd finally get to see the aliens...but the surprise would be that they aren't aliens at all. It is the Koch Brothers. Unhappy with their progress in taking over the world via political means, they faked the invasion so they could enslave everyone. The people in the green zone are the pinheads that they've selected to help run the system. Meanwhile the 200 richest people in the world are living large.
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I haven't watched Colony, but the premise for the series you describe seems great. Who do I talk to to get an option on the pilot? ;)

Tom Limoncelli

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gBhw8aresGg I'll give you a 10th item. The choreographer for the film later moved from dance to acting. You know her as Gates McFadden i.e. Dr. Beverly Crusher on Star Trek The Next Generation.
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+Jaime Garmendia Here's for you.

Tom Limoncelli

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Conservatives have this concept of "American Exceptionalism" which means that the U.S. is so damn amazing (usually they claim it is God's will) that we can break or ignore international laws and shit because... fuck, yeah! America!

Today I was thinking about what a Progressive version of American Exceptionalism would be. I think it would be simply that the U.S. has so much power, than we have the moral obligation to step wisely and consider our impact on others. Like a giant bull in a china shop, we must realize that our actions have impact on the people of less powerful countries and our small slips can fuck over other people. The moral thing to do is to consider our impact wisely. Our energy policy isn't just about us, it is about the entire planet. Our militarism isn't just about us but about the world. Our technology/encryption/cyberpolicy isn't just about us but it influences all other countries and the politics of everyone from the smallest human rights activist in a country you've never heard of to the next Nelson Mandela.

Then I realized there's already a phrase that expresses all this: WIth great power comes great responsibility.
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Back in the early decades, American Exceptionalism (not yet thus named) was strongly associated with the populists of the "republican democratic" faction/party (the most famous ones from Virginia: Jefferson, Madison, Monroe) -- America didn't need to worry about mob rule (even as the Jacobins guillotined thousands in France), didn't need institutions that every other country needed (a central bank, a Navy, an Army), didn't need a strong central government, didn't need manufacturing and merchants, taxes, government debt, etc, etc, because America was exceptional, special, utterly different. On the other side were the conservatives of the "federalist" faction/party (the most famous: Washington, Hamilton, Adams), who rejected this exceptionalism -- and, before losing to the populists, did manage to put in place most of the needed things...

Tom Limoncelli

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On the next episode of LISA Conversations...

Our guest will be +Alice Goldfuss. We'll be discussing her LISA '15 talk about growing a devops team: Scalable Meatfrastructure: Building Stable DevOps Teams

http://everythingsysadmin.com/2016/01/lc-006-announce.html
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Tom Limoncelli

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Elie Bursztein of Google provides insight into his talk at this month's Enigma Conference: http://ow.ly/WUVvb
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Tom Limoncelli

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http://www.computerworld.com/article/3022519/cloud-computing/why-google-hasnt-taken-off-in-the-cloud-yet.html

This article is rather optimistic about Google's cloud future despite the link-bait-y headline. 
Google Cloud Platform is in the unique position of being considered one of the big three IaaS vendors, but at the same time it's almost always seen as being the third-best option behind AWS and Microsoft. As the new head of Google’s cloud initiatives, VMware co-founder Diane Greene is now charged with doing what she did at VMware: Take a groundbreaking niche technology and turning it into the must-have enterprise product. But it will not be easy.
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Tom Limoncelli

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If you've been debating something on the internet for 20+ years and are still saying the same thing over and over to the same people... maybe the problem isn't that you are right and they are wrong.... maybe you are shitty at explaining yourself.

Just a thought.
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Maybe people just can't have their minds changed at all and culture changes at a fixed rate no matter what. At least the arrow of progress is generally always pointed towards social justice on the quarter century time scale (see Hans Rosling). In my family, it took generation change for ud as a group to become more progressive. That's a polite way of saying you have to just wait for old people to die. They are missed, personally. But I don't miss the isolation of being one of two progressives out of ten!

Tom Limoncelli

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"If you vote for us in this round, we'll vote for you in the next one."

I remember the heartbreaking crush of seeing Howard Dean lose so badly in the Iowa Caucus. You see, the caucus isn't a straight up or down vote. Each precinct meets and has a friendly hometown style discussion where each campaign makes their case why they should be elected. Then there are a series of votes and more discussion until there is a majority. It's actually more complex than that, but that's the basics.

Because of the complexity, there is a lot of strategy you need to use.

Dean's supporters were young and new to the process. They go the shit kicked out of them because they didn't know the strategies. The other campaigns were full of people that had been working these caucuses for decades. They knew exactly what they were doing.

The story we heard again and again: The non-Dean campaigners would say, "Look, nobody has enough votes to get a majority. If you vote for us, we'll vote for you in the next round."

The inexperienced Dean supporters would vote for "the other guy" who would get the majority. There would be no "next round!" SUCKERS!

Everyone is making big predictions for Trump to win in Iowa. I'm not too sure it will happen. If his campaign hasn't personally trained and vetted thousands and thousands of people, the "old party people" will use the same tricks and win.

I have a hunch that the media knows this. It is to their benefit that Trump loses big. The ratings will be ok if he wins, but if he loses? OMG..then everyone will be tuning in to find out why. To assure this, it helps if they ignore all the red flags that Trump will lose.

I could be wrong. We'll see.
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Do you buy "Trump to lose" shares (which were 33 cents and paid $1) or "Cruz to win" shares?    Note that the people in the prediction markets seem to feel Rubio is now much stronger than Cruz (it was really close to a 3 way tie) and that Clinton is now a lock over Sanders.   (As 538 says, Iowa should be one of Sanders' best states, if he can't win that, he can't win.  NH is also one of his very best states.)

Tom Limoncelli

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Google should buy Twitter and save it from its pending financial doom.

[Disclaimer: I do not work for Google; I own no Google stock, etc.]

I don't think Google Execs realize how awesome Twitter is. It is essentially the planet's chatroom. Instead of IRC with many individual channels, everyone "listens" to people they follow and (optionally) the messages that those people "retweet".

Saving Twitter would be a great thing for the world... but it would help Google too.

As part of integrating it into the internal Google stack, they should require their engineers to rebuild it on the Google Cloud Engine platform. That shit scales like crazy (good). Twitter has a history of scaling problems. If Google could run it on the Google Cloud Engine, and show that it scales, it would be great advertising.

Financially, Google needs GCE to succeed more than G+ (but that's for another blog post...or you can read Appendix B of http://the-cloud-book.com .. especially the last few paragraphs.

How difficult would it be to rebuild Twitter on GCE? I think it would be easier than you'd imagine. Every talk I've seen by Twitter engineers at conferences is about technology that (and I don't mean this with any disrespect) is reproducing something in Google's stack. Most of those things are exposed in GCE now, and the rest really should be. Oh, and the reproductions don't seem to be as scalable as Google's version. Oh, and it seems like everyone at Twitter is an ex-Google employee so ... you have that.

So, in summary:
* Google should buy Twitter.
* It would help save this important resource that the planet depends on.
* It would be the best showcase of GCE evah.... which is something Google needs more than the revenue of Twitter.

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Well, to show me bias... I'm cheering for GCE.  I don't have any financial interest, but I want to see Google do well.  The architecture details I remember at the time of my departure were amazing and I can only imagine its gotten better since. At Google's usual rate of change, in the intervening 3 years it has been reinvented twice over. It probably has actual warp drive and the datacenter equivalent of holodecks.

That said, the cw that you hear at meetups and in other places is that GCE is a distant 3rd in size compared to AWS and Azure. This irks me because it is basically MS using their marketing power and enterprise leverage to push mediocre products... just like MS-ActiveDirectory beating Novel in the 90s, MS-Exchange beating [everything] in the late 90s, [insert more examples].  They have really made it easy for enterprises to feel like they can just press a button and be on Azure...and in some cases they literally can (the new MS dev tools have a "run on Azure" button).  All that and..... the other thing that irks me is that Azure is basically crumbing from the inside but MS is poaching a lot of good people in an effort to try to fix it faster than it can crumble.

So, if it is an invalid perception that GCE isn't doing as well as Azure I'm glad.... but it concerns me that the perception is out there.

If I wasn't happy in my current job I'd be applying for a developer advocate position at GCE or finding some way to get involved (or... failing that... job hunting at companies that use GCE :-) ).  I have a dozen ideas about how GCE could market itself better... I'm sure they are half-baked and unrealistic because I don't have the internal data that one needs to come up with realistic plans, but at least I'm thinking about these things.

We'll have to disagree about the importance of Twitter.  Ironically we're in a comical catch-22 with me saying "googler's under-appreciate twitter" and you saying "twitter isn't compelling".  Either of us repeating our case just... well... you can see the humor in that, right?

Tom Limoncelli

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The preliminary call for participation for LISA16 is now open. The deadline is February 29th: http://ow.ly/X7s8o
Sponsored by USENIX, the Advanced Computing Systems Association in cooperation with LOPSA. LISA16 will take place December 4–9, 2016, at the Sheraton Boston. LISA is the premier conference for IT operations, where systems engineers, operations professionals, and academic researchers share ...
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Computer System Administrator, Author
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Python, Puppet, Linux, Public Speaking, Writing
Employment
  • StackExchange.com
    SRE, 2013 - present
  • Google
    Computer System Administrator, 2006 - 2013
    7 years of feeling like "the new guy that is still trying to figure out how to fit in."
  • Cibernet Corp (now MACH)
    Director of IT, 2004 - 2005
  • Lumeta Corporation
    System Administrator, 2000 - 2004
  • Bell Labs
    MTS-1, 1994 - 2000
  • Mentor Graphics
    Fool for staying so long, 1991 - 1994
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Bloomfield, NJ
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North Plainfield, NJ - Plainfield, NJ - Madison, NJ - Morristown, NJ - New Haven, CT - Somerville, NJ - Bridgewater Township, NJ - Scotch Plains, NJ - Montclair, NJ
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Author, sysadmin, LGBT activist, traveler, time management guru.
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Author, sysadmin, LGBT activist, traveler, time management guru.

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I'm not famous but I'm "internet famous".
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Education
  • Drew University
    1987 - 1991
  • Morristown High School
    1983 - 1987
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Tom, Thomas, "tal"
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