Building a Curry Solution

We recently had one of our team, Ross MacKenzie who works in Scotland, down for a few days in our Loughborough office.  Being surrounded by typical developers from the East Midlands, what better team bonding experience than David Cabaniuk’s suggestion of going for a Curry!

It just so happened that our Infrastructure Manager, David Office, was also down in Loughborough for a couple of days, so we invited him along too…

Now in Quorn there are two curry houses, one which serves beer, and “the other one” that doesn’t… So being the logical developers that we are, we went to the one that doesn’t serve beer!? (Not sure who organised that… *cough* Jag Bohania)

Ah, but we’re also a problem-solving, cost conscious breed, so we planned ahead; the curry house is a ‘Bring your Own’ and en route a couple of the guys grabbed a few beers and we were sorted. (I mean you can’t have a Curry without a beer, that’s just wrong!)

So the first order of the night was to get some poppadums, before moving on to ordering some starters.  Obviously rice and naan were also ordered, along with a various mix of main dishes.

Being the lightweight that I am, I went for butter chicken. (There was something about Steve’s blog on Security Bottomed Out that just made me cautious about ordering something spicier…) It was fantastic though and highly recommended if you ever visit Quorn.

As the food was being brought out, my mind, as it so often does, started to wander to thinking about technology.  I thought about how the curry meal was all put together, and how this related to building a technology business solution.

First of all, it’s important to get the foundations correct – otherwise you will be glued to “the Satis”, which is not something anyone wants!  In my mind the ‘foundation’ is the rice – it’s got to be right. 

In the technology world, Windows Server is the rice, and it’s what most business solutions are built on.  In a few months there is a new release of this great product, called Windows Server 2012 R2 which has advances in storage and networking.  This takes it from plain boiled rice to a more enticing pilau rice.

The naan of the technology world is Microsoft SQL Server, it complements and goes with everything, and it can be shared, dipped in your curry app for a fantastic team building user experience.

There is a new release of this product coming out soon too called SQL Server 2014, as yet a date has not been confirmed, but it provides SSD (Solid State Disk) bufferpool extension, which can improve application performance transparently. 

It’s exactly what you need when architecting a super-fast and AlwaysOn business solution.

The waiter of the technology world is Hyper-V.  This serves up our vindaloo Dynamics CRM, phaal Dynamics NAV, and balti SharePoint main app dish.

Microsoft Windows 8 also comes with Hyper-V which complements its big brother version (Server 2012), both of which David Office kindly helped us to get up and running for our World Class Development Environment.

A good curry is built by an amazing chef, someone who is in the background that you don’t even think about.  He has an amazing library of spices and compiles them all together for that awesome taste sensation.

The technology equivalent being Microsoft Visual Studio 🙂

Visual Studio allows us to create the side dishes that complement the main dish, it allows us to integrate for example CRM into a custom website, reducing your time in getting customer data directly to your business application, or vice versa.

It allows us to write Unit Tests for code, meaning that when the local health inspector makes a visit (also known as Luke Barfield, TSG’s Head of Quality Assurance), we are covered with a tested and reliable solution.

So what’s the beer’s equivalent in the business solution? Well it has to be mobile devices… As with mobile devices, the beer device is portable, and comes from a number of different service providers. It provides fluid reception and only occasionally fails to deliver what you expected.

You do have to be careful though not to top-up too much, otherwise you could find yourself with a Mega data headache in the morning! Luckily we were all sensible and stayed within our data bundle that night, fresh for the next day…

There is a video by Somersby Cider that gives a great parody between the beer device and apple store, and well worth connecting with:

As you can see there are many parallels between a nice and spicy curry and an awesomely hot business solution, the only choice you have to make really is which main app dish you’ll go for!