Meeting August 13: Linux Containers for Learning

Linux Containers for Learning
Mark McCahill
Thursday, 13 August 2015 -
7:00pm to 9:00pm
Bandwidth, Venture III, 900 Main Campus Dr, Raleigh, NC 27606
Venture Center Deck, adjacent to Venture III on Venture Center Way (visitor spaces are unrestricted after 5pm)

Recording: YouTube

Duke University provides access to a wide variety of Linux applications, for student projects, teaching, and research. Besides provisioning hundreds of traditional Linux VM's each semester, Duke is taking advantage of emerging container technologies to host applications.

This presentation will explore a few of the technologies and tools Duke has used for application delivery, including the 350 Ubuntu containers running on Docker that host R and RStudio for statistics courses, and the noVNC/OpenBox solution used to embed X Windows applications in users' Web browsers. (Source code for some of this technology will be available on GitHub.) It will also discuss more generally the strategy and the tradeoffs involved in providing virtualized applications - especially when you have to give sudo access to students.

Mark McCahill works at Duke University's Office of Information Technology, as an architect for e-learning and collaborative systems. He was involved in the development and popularization of early Internet technologies - most notably at the University of Minnesota, where he led the team that developed Gopher. He is also interested in virtual worlds, developing the GopherVR system for organizing Gopher information spatially, and serving as an architect of the Croquet project.