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Steve Vinoski, Verivue

 Steve  Vinoski

Steve Vinoski is a member of technical staff at Verivue, a startup in Westford, MA, USA. He was previously chief architect and Fellow at IONA Technologies (now part of Progress Software) for a decade, and prior to that held various software and hardware engineering positions at Hewlett-Packard, Apollo Computer, and Texas Instruments.

Over the past two decades Steve has authored or co-authored approximately 80 highly-regarded publications on distributed computing and enterprise integration for magazines such as IEEE Internet Computing, C/C++ Users Journal, and C++ Report, and co-authored the book "Advanced CORBA Programming with C++" with Michi Henning, published in 1999 and regarded by many as "the CORBA bible." He started working with distributed computing systems at Apollo Computer in 1988.

Presentation: "RPC and its Offspring: Convenient, Yet Fundamentally Flawed"

Time: Friday 14:15 - 15:15

Location: Abbey Room


In 1976, RFC 707 described the "Procedure Call Model" as a way to make remote resources as easy to use as local ones, with the goal of helping application programmers of the day get over their lack of proficiency with network programming. It proposed that the procedure call was the right abstraction for extending the local programming environment to provide familiar access to modules and libraries hosted on remote systems.

From this idea came the Remote Procedure Call (RPC) and all its derivatives, including DCE, distributed object systems like DCOM and CORBA, XML-RPC, and SOAP-based web services. A fundamental goal of these and countless other similar technologies developed over the years was to shoehorn distributed systems programming into the local programming models so customary and convenient to the average developer, thereby hiding the difficult issues associated with distribution such as partial failure, availability and location issues, and consistency and synchronization problems.

We've known for a long time about fundamental problems with RPC-oriented approaches, yet over the past three decades we've largely ignored those issues and invested incalculable amounts of time and money on developing and using software systems that try to make distributed systems appear local. This talk will present a history of RPC, discuss reasons why the RPC model has been so persistent despite its fundamental flaws, and suggest alternatives that are both convenient and correct.

Presentation: "Game show: It's a Bullseye! with Jim Webber"

Time: Friday 16:45 - 17:45

Location: Fleming Room


In this spoof of the classic UK game show "Bullseye!", Jim "Bowen" Webber will host an hour-long game show in which the four panelists will answer randomly-chosen questions that are submitted by you throughout the conference. Attendees will be chosen from the crowd to throw darts at Bully's prize board, and if the question that you submitted is asked of the panel, then you win a prize!

Join us for an hour of fun and learning, and remember: You can't beat a bit o' Bully!