Turn math into pixels

Building a social network from scratch

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How the journey began

Last year I’ve met Rene Pickhardt, a PhD student at West Institute at University of Koblenz.

He mentioned early that he was one of the founders of the social network for metal heads called metalcon.

Some weeks ago Rene gave me the opportunity to join his team (consisting of a significant number of long-haired hackers) which is currently planning the redesign of metalcon and it’s overall infrastructure.

Status quo (or what went „terribly“ wrong)

During our requirements analysis we found some key features, that where bad resolved earlier or are now outdated due to new web standards or new design paradigms.

Rene gave a very good summary on the previous work he and Jonas did, back in the days when facebook was nearly unknown in germany.

Some of our requirements and definitions are currently available on github:

Long story short: The current site scales very badly.

Let us hear your voice

As Rene may mentioned on his blog, we are defining use cases and requirements for different stake holders. If you want to participate and have some cool features to propose, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Further information on github or via email. Or drop me a line via @dysterfyr on Twitter and I will come back to you.

My view on this project

Back in 2008 I worked as an web application developer for .NET systems and this had a negative impact on my motivation to do further web development in the future.

Anyway, it is a great pleasure for me to get involved in such a „huge“ project. Furthermore, I like it to develop software which is open-source, working with a team that work focussed and know how to create good software.

Due to the early phase I can not say which part I will be responsible for, but during the past weeks I read a lot about distributed architecures and high scale systems like MongoDB, Cassandra, Lucene/Solr and many more. So I think I will obtain responsibility for our new storage backend, building websevices/interfaces and security audits (which are a hobby of mine).

No matter what part will be mine later on, my mantra will be: scale bigger, break harder and look better!

Autor: pschmidt

Student of computations visualistics. Turns math into pixels. Posts may flavored by raytracing and robotics. Backend engineer at TOMRA. Hiking if afk.

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