Stockholm, March 17th, 2016.
After much preparation and hard work from the Nordic Professional Services, Pre-sales team and local marketing, as well as for our Non-Nordic Akamai speakers, the time had come. The annual Nordic Akamai Tech Day was to begin. We had a packed agenda covering the Akamai Platform, Web, Media and Security, and 50 eager customers to please.
At the Tech Day, we look beyond the standard Akamai portfolio and discuss the power of the Akamai Intelligent Platform and the flexibility it offers to solve a range of unique challenges that our customers are facing. This interactive forum investigates complex technical situations, is a place to share ideas and inspire thinking and learning. Our customers also have the opportunity to listen to other peers in the industry and network with them.
New this year was that the event was hosted at an external venue in the city center, instead of the Akamai Stockholm office building.
The first speaker was Larry Underhill, VP Platform Delivery.
Akamai has developed and now operates the world’s largest and most advanced, cloud-based platform for securely distributing and accelerating web content, enterprise applications and video. Larry spoke about how we make sure that the Intelligent Platform is not only fast, but also 100% reliable and secure. He also spoke about some of our key platform initiatives as IPv6 and TLS Everywhere.
Want to know more about why TLS isn’t everywhere yet? https://community.akamai.com/videos/1465
Lukasz Czerpak, Senior Solution Architect and Fredrik Klasen Solutions Engineer, spoke about the Akamai OPEN API initiative. Akamai's Open APIs are REST-style access points. The APIs enable our customers to get direct, secure access to control, configure, and monitor their projects. Lukasz and Fredrik showed how to use APIs to control and open up the Akamai platform and products to tools and third party applications. Lukasz had also produced an advanced solution based on the Akamai Phased Release Cloudlet that in combination with Global Traffic Manager, and controlled via APIs, could seamlessly control the amount of visitors that should end up in a waiting room based on load feedback from the datacenters.
Michael Gooding, our Web Performance Optimization Evangelist, spoke about experiences of HTTP/2 (H2) in the real world.
With H2 being about a year old, Michael shared his experiences from the last 12 months. This included case studies to see how performance can be improved over H2 as a turnkey solution, backward compatibility, and how it is possible to use RUM data to review performance-related observations after switching to H2.
Test your own connection and read more about the Akamai HTTP/2 initiative here https://http2.akamai.com/
How do we actually solve the big challenges for video distribution then? This was addressed by Stephane Durand, Digital Media Technical Account Manager.
There are plenty of challenges to the media industry; 4K, UHD, low latency, TV quality streaming, etc. The Internet was never designed for video streaming and certainly not to replace the existing satellite and TV networks. Stephane showed how adding capacity to the network will not cover this "hockey stick" exponential growth. In the presentation he covered how we solve the problem in a more intelligent manner using pre-positioning and incorporating technology from our Octoshape acquisition.
During the lunch break, the customers took the opportunity to dive even deeper into our technology by visiting our demo booths, showcasing HTTP/2, OPEN API implementations and Image Manager demos.
To start the second half of the day, Henrik Eriksson, Lead Engagement Manager, hosted a panel discussion boasting the headline – "Are we reaching the final battle of the streaming format war?"
With several Media Source Extensions based media players moving into primetime and the more recent announcement of hls.js, 2015 was an exciting year for media playback. It seems that DASH and HLS are emerging as the core formats in most distribution strategies. Some of the major Nordic broadcasters shared their views and their thoughts on what the future holds.
Nick Doyle Image Manager Developer from Ottawa was next up on stage. Nick showed how Akamai, with massive scale, could deliver scaled down pictures in the right format to the right device and compressed in a way so that end users would not see a quality degradation. You can find more information on perceptual quality from this ”Ask the Experts” thread on our Community: https://community.akamai.com/thread/2709
Tsvika Klein, Senior Product Manager for Akamai Cloud Security platform spoke about how Akamai Reputation Services could be used to battle advanced web attacks. As attacks are no longer a simple DDoS, nor cross-site scripting anymore, you need to keep your friends close and your enemies closer to win the battle. For that, you need to understand who is attacking you, preferably before it even happens.
Using Big Data analysis, Akamai have built up the worlds most trustworthy Reputation Service. This service is used in battling Botnets and web scrapers, and I recommend you to read more on the subject here: https://blogs.akamai.com/2016/03/scaper-and-bot-series---when-good-bots-go-bad.html#more
The closing keynote was delivered by Tobias Degsell (Tobias Degsell (@tobiasdegsell) | Twitter)) , Curator Nobel Museum. It had the intriguing headline – "The Spark of Creativity”. Of course we where all curious on what that spark might be! As Tobias delivered this talk regularly all over the globe, I won’t tell you more at this point in time. But before we learnt about the spark, we learnt more about the Nobel Prize and its founder, as well as the Nobel Laureates and their creative endeavors.
It was the perfect ending to a great day, where our customers left full of new ideas and inspiration for upcoming projects.