Monday, 25 September 2017

Cloud Computing in Simple Terms: Why Store Data With NuoDB?

The cloud was once a buzzword known only to a select few. Now, it's fully integrated with the collective consciousness, making a name for itself in ads, product descriptions and casual conversation. Many people, however, remain unaware of what the cloud actually means, and telling them that it's a type of distributed computing doesn't always clarify the issue.


The Cloud Explained

The cloud is just a more specialized form of computer network. Like any regular office or enterprise network, it consists of connected computer hardware. The main difference, however, lies in the way it's put to use and how it fulfills its purpose.

Traditional network architectures are built around machines that use data connections to augment their efficiency and capabilities. With the cloud, networking is integral to functionality. Purpose-built cloud apps work to get the most out of networking by storing information more efficiently, running programs with the aid of increased computing power or ensuring that data is always available to remote users. Although you can theoretically create a cloud computing implementation in the same data center or local server pool that you'd use for a regular network, the software tools that you include in your deployment make a big difference in its functionality.


Different Kinds of Cloud Computing

Distributed computing in the cloud takes various forms. For instance, you can set up a media server implementation that lets users stream content such as films or music. Or you can create an app that allows multiple team members to access documents remotely and share their edits. Cloud implementations power everything from mapping software and social networks to basic remote storage tools that let subscribers save local space on their personal and office machines.


Why Are so Many Companies Using the Cloud?

It's worth noting that the cloud can handle most of the programs that you might run on a local server and vice versa. This begs the question: If you could just use a local machine, then why would you make the switch?

Distributed computing has a number of advantages over more traditional alternatives. Chief among these is the fact that since cloud software has its roots in
internet-connected network architectures, it's much easier to create apps that people can access from anywhere. Cloud-based storage appeals to those who want to save space on their devices, share information and retain the ability to access their data no matter where they are. Running enterprise or consumer-ready software in the cloud gives businesses the power to deliver full-featured, instantly available apps with native collaboration and sharing built in, which helps companies stay competitive in an increasingly data-hungry modern world.


NuoDB: How Does Cloud Storage Work?

Of course, the cloud isn't perfect, and one of its unique problems lies in the realm of data storage.
Traditional cloud database architectures like SQL make it impossible to scale up on-demand. Although alternatives like NoSQL resolve some of these issues, they force you to insert your data management code into the application layer or adhere to a small subset of usage cases, which can pose huge problems when you want to add new features. NuoDB helps you solve these problems with a novel approach known as NewSQL.

NuoDB's technology permits intelligent, shard-free scaling that minimizes storage complexity and actually leverages distributed computing to run faster as new servers are added. Unlike many implementations, it's also made to scale predictably, comply with SQL and free you from having to work with a single vendor to get the flexibility that your cloud deployments deserve. Learn more about the advantages by visiting 
nuodb.com.


Monday, 7 August 2017

Sitcom Trials stars at Edinburgh 2017

Every year there are stars who've passed through the ranks of The Sitcom Trials shining bright at the Edinburgh Fringe. 2017 is no exception. Here are 5 of the best (if you know of more please tell us).


Kate Bowes-Renna

Kate, along with Vanessa-Faye Stanley, won last year's Sitcom Trials So You Think You Write Funny final at the Gilded Balloon, and now she's back to claim her prize. Her satirical one-woman comedy All Hell Toupee sees Kate (who you may recognise from everything from Downton Abbey to Love Actually) performing a dazzling array of characters, in a variety of hairpieces. We are all hiding but what happens when the mask, or in this case the toupee, slips? Find out August 7 - 13 at the Gilded Balloon.


Aaron Twitchen

Aaron was a star in the 2016 Sitcom Trials tournament, running the Birmingham heats of the show, and performing in the final. This year he brings his first solo show, Curtain Twitchen, to Edinburgh, combining aerial circus skills with stand up. Mixing stories of friendship, love and wine with jaw-dropping stunts on the aerial silks in a gossipy cabaret explosion, Aaron Twitchen takes comedy to highs you've never seen before... literally. At C Venues from the 6th to the 28th.




Rosie Holt

Rosie won 2013's Sitcom Trials So You Think You Write Funny final at the Gilded Balloon, and this year returns on a double bill with Christian Talbot - Holt and Talbot Can't Stand The Sight Of Each Other. Thrown together through financial necessity, can they stay civil to each other for an entire month of shows? Find out at Sweet Grassmarket from the 7th to the 27th 

Draycott & Trimm

Charity Trimm was the star of The Sitcom Trials' very first Edinburgh run, back in 2001, alongside her then comedy partner Miranda Hart. Anne-Marie Draycott starred in The Sitcom Trials' fondly remembered ITV series in 2003, then in the Trials' last month-long run at the Fringe in 2004. Now, writing together, Draycott & Trimm have created Class Mates, a comedy which takes one community centre, three evening classes, six skill-seekers and stands back. Performed by A Dash Of Theatre at The Space On The Mile, Aug 7 - 25.


McNeil & Pamphilon

2009's Sitcom Trials winners are a bit too successful with their TV show Go 8 Bit to be bothered with spending whole months in Edinburgh right now, but Steve McNeil will be up on August 11th to do a one-off WifiWars.

 Let's close with these words of advice he offers to all folks putting on a show this month:

Good luck Edinburgh chums! Just remember:
1. student reviewers' opinions are utterly worthless and you are the only person who'll ever read their thoughts about you from start to finish. people you know *might* glance at the stars, but they're already thinking about themselves again
2. audience sizes are only occasionally proportional to merit
3. all deep fried food is delicious
4. waterproof shoes
5. stick with it - if McNeil & Pamphilon can get on TV, literally anyone can
6. no real people have ever heard of Chortle
7. climbing arthur's seat is a dreadful idea. have a biscuit instead
8. spend every free moment with people you like. you won't meet up back in London except at gigs because you're not weird
9. umbrella
10. Would love to have some friends at WiFi Wars on the 11th August at the Dome, it's a big one for us - we've got Angry Microwave in
xxx



The Sitcom Trials is taking a break at the moment but could return at any time. Stay tuned

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

McNeil & Pamphilon's Go 8 Bit gets 2 new series

2009's Sitcom Trials winners, Steve McNeil & Sam Pamphilon's TV show Go 8-Bit has been given two new series. Merry Christmas lads.


Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit is returning for two more series, Chortle can reveal.

Team captains and format creators Steve McNeil and Sam Pamphilon are also back for Dave's gaming panel show, which has extended its run for six to ten episodes per series.

Gaming journalist and comic Ellie Gibson will reprise her role as O Briain's sidekick on the show, which was one of the channel's five highest rated programmes of 2016.

Based on McNeil and Pamphilon's 2013 Edinburgh Fringe show, the first series aired in the autumn, with guest players including Russell Howard, Bob Mortimer, Jason Manford, Susan Calman and Ed Byrne.

The new episodes, due to air sometime in 2017, once again promise battles on classic games and new titles, as well as physical challenges.

O Briain said: 'What bittersweet news. The more time I spend making this fun exciting show about video games, the less time I have to play fun, exciting video games, and I'm already pretty bad at video games.

'In fact, the more I make this show the less qualified I am to be a guest on it. Now there's an irony.'

Go 8 Bit became a regular live comedy night in London and was in television development for two years.

The new episodes, which will be recorded in Elstree Studios from the end of January, are once again directed by Steve Smith, produced by Darren Sole and made by DLT Entertainment. They were ordered by Dave's director of commissioning Richard Watsham and the channel's general manager Steve North.

Iain Coyle, UKTV's senior commissioning editor and executive producer said: 'I’m so made up we’re making more of these. It’s been a real breakout hit for us and I’m so delighted it’s been embraced by the gaming community and Dave viewers alike. I guess that means my kids are gonna carry on pushing for that revolving sofa.'

Executive producer Donald Taffner Jr, added: 'Our team did a fantastic job of adapting a live Edinburgh Fringe show into the first video-game driven TV show that has been embraced by viewers of all ages and critics alike. UKTV took a chance on this format when others did not. They have been a great partner and we all look forward to producing the next two series and beyond.'

Reviews of the first series were generally positive, with Den of Geek describing Go 8 Bit as 'a decent mix of laughs and controller bashing confrontation', while the Guardian said: 'O Briain can host the heck out of a panel show, so it shouldn’t work but somehow it does.' Here is Chortle's review of the first episode.

- by Jay Richardson

Posted: 14 Dec 2016

Monday, 5 December 2016

Merry Christmas & thankyou from The Sitcom Trials


Seasons Greetings to everyone who participated in and enjoyed 2016's mammoth Sitcom Trials year, and a very big thankyou to all.

From the one-off Hull Sitcom Trials in March, through the deluge of script entries for the So You Think You Write Funny competition, via the Heats, readings, workshops, and more Heats in Glasgow, Birmingham, Cardiff, Manchester and London, to the Grand Final in Edinburgh, it's been a tremendous year, seeing 30 sitcoms showcased in 6 Heats across the country, and the highest quality of contribution and effort I can remember.

Extra special thanks have to go to the producers and team leaders across the country, without whom we'd have had no shows to begin with. So thanks to Aaron Twitchen in Birmingham, Sean Mason in Manchester, Colin McQuaid in Glasgow, Charlie Smith and Dan Mitchell in Cardiff, myself (Kev) in London (yes, you're allowed to thank yourself), all the teams of actors, writers, directors, and assistants who put every performance together, to our judges, and to the Gilded Balloon in Edinburgh for the final.




Congratulations to the finalists Baby, Rachel, Vanessa & Kate, Paul & Mat, and Sean & Ashleigh, and to Like-A-Looks for the win.

I've made no plans for The Sitcom Trials for 2017, but if anyone wants to discuss it, whether they want to put together an informal Trials event or talk about more ambitious plans, you'll get me on kevf@sitcomtrials.co.uk

A Very Happy New Year when it comes

Love from

Kev F Sutherland
Creator and Producer
The Sitcom Trials


To see all 30 sitcoms in contention across the 6 Heats of the Sitcom Trials #SYTYWF 2016, check out the videos below.

Heat 1 London Video
Heat 2 London Video
Heat 3 Birmingham Video
Heat 4 Cardiff Video
Heat 5 Manchester Video
Heat 6 Glasgow Video 
Edinburgh Fringe Grand Final video

For news of forthcoming Sitcom Trials events, and your opportunity to take part or just watch, stay tuned to the Sitcom Trials blog, Twitter and Facebook.


Monday, 29 August 2016

#SYTYWF Grand Final 2016 - the videos


The video highlights from the Grand Final of The Sitcom Trials So You Think You Write Funny are now on Youtube, please click and enjoy the 4 minutes of fun that give you a taste of the night.

The 5 sitcoms in contention, in order of appearance, were 

Like-A-Looks by Vanessa-Faye Stanley and Kate Bowes-Renna 
Final performance in full
London Heat performance in full

Sonny & Me by Baby Isako 
Final performance in full
London Heat performance in full

Aquarius Cafe by Rachel Sambrooks 
Final performance in full
Birmingham Heat performance in full

Agent of Lovcraft by Paul Hunt & Mat Troy 
Final performance in full
Cardiff Heat performance in full

and The Graduettes by Sean and Ashleigh Wilkie
Final performance in full
Glasgow Heat performance in full




To see all 30 sitcoms in contention across the 6 Heats of the Sitcom Trials #SYTYWF 2016, check out the videos below.

Heat 1 London Video
Heat 2 London Video
Heat 3 Birmingham Video
Heat 4 Cardiff Video
Heat 5 Manchester Video
Heat 6 Glasgow Video 
Edinburgh Fringe Grand Final video

For news of forthcoming Sitcom Trials events, and your opportunity to take part or just watch, stay tuned to the Sitcom Trials blog, Twitter and Facebook.





Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Sitcom Trials #SYTYWF - and the winners are..?


The various casts of The Sitcom Trials So You Think You Write Funny Grand Final 2016. (Back row) Sonny & Me, Like A Looks, (middle) Agent Of Lovcraft, (front) host Kev F, Aquarius Cafe. (We're missing The Graduettes who, sadly, had left before we called the last-minute photoshoot). Photo by Nick Steel.

Thanks and warmest congratulations to everybody who took part in and attended the Sitcom Trials So You Think You Write Funny Grand Final at the Gilded Balloon on Tuesday August 23rd 2016. A splendid night was had by all, and as you can see, a lot of performers (and writers, also out of shot) put a lot of effort into bringing together this production.

As always, we presented five brand new sitcoms live in stage, and the audience voted for their favourite and only saw the ending of the one that they chose as their winner. Plus, with this being the culmination of a six month long tournament, following heats across the country, with the prize on offer of their own show at the Gilded Balloon next year, there was a panel of judges who, independently of the audience vote, chose the ultimate prizewinner.



The 5 sitcoms in contention, in order of appearance, were Like-A-Looks by Vanessa-Faye Stanley and Kate Bowes-Renna (winner of the 1st London Heat), Sonny & Me by Baby Isako (winner of the 2nd London Heat), Aquarius Cafe by Rachel Sambrooks (winner of the Birmingham Heat), Agent of Lovcraft by Paul Hunt & Mat Troy (winner of the Cardiff Heat), and The Graduettes by Sean and Ashleigh Wilkie (winner of the Glasgow Heat).

The judges were Rosie Holt (the previous winner of The Sitcom Trials SYTYWF), Nick Steel (Bath Comedy Festival), Kate Lennon (Funny Women) and Karen Koren (Gilded Balloon).

And the winners were...

Winner of the audience vote, and therefore the team who got to perform their final scene: Sonny and Me.



Winner of the judges vote and the ultimate prizewinners: Like-A-Looks.



Congratulations to the winners, and thanks to all the performers who had to contend with a slightly late start and overlong warm-up from myself (Kev F, your host and producer), followed by the music bleeding through from the show next door, which was a challenge to which everyone rose maginificently. In the end the whole event only overran by 10 minutes, and a splendid time was had by all.

Oh yes, and the prize for the best audience sitcom suggestion in The Pitch Fest was a drawing of Mrs Brown by Kev F (of which, sadly, no photo was taken).

The Sitcom Trials will be continuing at venues across the country, follow it on the blog and via Facebook and Twitter for details of how to take part.

Kev F Sutherland, creator & producer, The Sitcom Trials


Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Sitcom Trials #SYTYWF final - the tension mounts

In the run up to the Sitcom Trials So You Think You Write Funny final tonight, the competing teams have been busy on social media whipping up the excitement. The Cardiff team, presenting Agent Of Lovcraft, have definitely won the prize for Best Accommodation:



While the Like-A-Looks team have gone to town on the gifs...


Rachel and her Aquarius Cafe haven't been backwards in coming forwards with the invites, here she is inviting French & Saunders to the show (we're awaiting their reply):


The Graduettes are proud of their unique status:





And Sonny & Me have their own flyer-come-programme - stylish.


Best of luck to everyone at tonight's final. Stay tuned for a report of how it all goes.



The Sitcom Trials So You Think You Write Funny? Grand Final is on at 10.30pm, August 23rd 2016 at The Gilded Ballon, Edinburgh Fringe. Tickets here.
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