A Brief History of Time in Rank – Sean Cribbs

By Erlang Central | Published: December 4, 2014

“Time, it will not erase me! For what is time? It’s just passing by.” — Lost In The Trees (2007)


What is the meaning of time in a distributed system? How can we make sense of events separated by great spans of space-time? Why do I need to give Riak a vector clock with every write? How do vector clocks even work?

This talk is the history of how we have tried to make sense of time, ordering, and causality in Riak, the trade-offs associated with each solution, and representations of logical time we are investigating for future versions.

About Sean Cribbs

Sean Cribbs is a Senior Software Engineer at Basho, where he has contributed to many parts of Riak but focuses on aspects of user experience, including client interfaces and libraries, convergent datatypes (CRDTs), and tools. Sean frequently speaks at conferences on topics of Riak, distributed systems, eventual consistency, and web architecture.

Follow Sean: @seancribbs

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