Berlin Buzzwords is a conference on scalable search, data processing and NoSQL databases. It is co-organised by newthinking, Jan Lehnardt , Simon Willnauer and Isabel Drost



Berlin Buzzwords opens its doors next Monday at 8:00am. As you may know, the conference is being organised by the program committee consisting of Jim Webber, Grant Ingersoll, Owen O’Malley, Sean Treadway, Simon Willnauer, Isabel Drost and Jan Lehnardt. In addition there are several people from newthinking communications involved in having the conference run as smooth as it does. Also this conference would not be as cool as it is without the help of a large number of volunteers setting up complimentary events, helping with session moderation, conference setup and tear down. 

We would like to use this opportunity to publish some pictures and background information on the people behind Berlin Buzzwords - a hug to everyone involved: Without you this event would never be possible. If you have any questions or problems during the conference, don't hesitate to grab one of the following guys for help.


The program committee

Responsible for the content of Berlin Buzzwords - they spent nights and nights reviewing the numerous submissions we got, rating and commenting each one. Thanks a lot for the work you put into assessing the quality of our submissions - it was a hard task that in the end resulted in a number of acceptance and decline mails being sent out to potential speakers. Thanks for being as objective as possible, thanks for providing comments to your ratings though they were optional. You made our life so much easier.

Jim Webber

Dr. Jim Webber is Chief Scientist with Neo Technology the company behind the popular open sou rce graph database Neo4j, where he works on graph database server technology and writes open source software. Jim is interested in using big graphs like the Web for building distributed systems, which led him to being a co-author on the book REST in Practice, having previously written Developing Enterprise Web Services - An Architect's Guide. Jim is an active speaker, presenting regularly around the world. His blog is located at and he tweets often @jimwebber.

Grant Ingersoll

Grant Ingersoll is the creator of the Lucene Boot Camp training program, a regularly featured speaker at ApacheCon and other industry events. Grant has been an active member of the Lucene community & Lucene and Solr committer, co-founder of the Apache Mahout machine learning project, chairman of the Lucene Project Management Committee (PMC) as well as a Vice President at the Apache Software Foundation. Grant's prior experience includes work at the Center for Natural Language Processing at Syracuse University in natural language processing and information retrieval. Grant earned his B.S. from Amherst College in Math and Computer Science and his M.S. in Computer Science from Syracuse University, NY.

Owen O'Malley

Owen O'Malley is a software architect who has worked exclusively on Hadoop since the project's start. He was the first committer added to Hadoop and was the original chair of the Hadoop Project Management Committee. Owen was the technology lead for both MapReduce and the project to add security to Hadoop. In 2009, he optimized Hadoop to set the record for the Terasort, Gray Sort, and Minute Sort benchmarks. In July 2011, he helped co-found Hortonworks, which is accelerating development and adoption of Hadoop for the enterprise. Before working on Hadoop, he worked on Yahoo Search'sWebMap project, which builds a graph of the known web and applies many heuristics to the entire graph that control search. Prior to Yahoo, he wandered between testing, static analysis, distributed configuration management, and software model checking. He received his PhD in Software Engineering from University of California, Irvine.

Sean Treadway

Sean currently heads the architectural evolution of SoundCloud backed by a diverse history of engineering and operating desktop, server and web applications. He tackles the challenges of scaling to multi-millions of users while maintaining rapid development at SoundCloud - a social sound platform for anyone to record, promote and share their sounds on all devices, including the web.


Simon Willnauer

Simon Willnauer is a Elasticsearch & Apache Lucene core committer and Apache Software Foundation Member. He has been involved with Lucene  since 2006 and has contributed to several other open source projects within and without the Apache Software Foundation. During the last couple of years he worked on design and implementation of scalable information retrieval systems and search infrastructure. His main interests are performance optimizations and concurrency. He studied Computer Science at the University of Applied Sciene Berlin. He is a co-founder & member of technical staff at Elasticsearch and a co-founder of the BerlinBuzzwords conference.

Isabel Drost-Fromm

Isabel Drost-Fromm is member of the Apache Software Foundation. She is co-founder of the Berlin Buzzwords conference, the Apache Hadoop Get Together in Berlin, and was co-organiser of the first European NoSQL meetup.
Isabel co-founded and is active committer of Apache Mahout. She is actively engaged with communities of several big data and search related Apache projects, e.g. Apache Lucene, and Apache Hadoop. She is regular speaker at renown conferences on topics related to free software development, scalability, Apache Lucen, Apache Hadoop and Apache Mahout. 
Isabel would like to thank Nokia Gate5 GmbH, in particular the Search/ POI Discovery team (Hannes Kruppa, Steffen Bickel, Matthias Pohl, Konstantin Clemens, Zeno Gantner, Alex Vitvitsky, Niko Ugarov, Stefan Hübner, Alexander Kahl and Mark Waldaukat) for supporting the conference by donating part of my working hours to Berlin Buzzwords preparation and dealing with a lately “slightly overbooked” Scrum master.

Jan Lehnardt

Jan Lehnardt is an Open Source developer. He works on all parts of the web stack and tries to make things easier for everyone. He’s a core contributor to Apache CouchDB, a co-curator for JSConf EU and lives in Berlin.



Ted Dunning

Ted has been involved with a number of startup with the latest being MapR Technologies where he is Chief Application Architect working on advanced Hadoop-related technologies. He is also a PMC member for the Apache Zookeeper and Mahout projects. Opinionated about software and data-mining and passionate about open source, he is an active participant of Hadoop and related communities and loves helping projects get going with new technologies.        


Jonathan Ellis

Jonathan is CTO and co-founder at DataStax as well as Project Chair of Apache Cassandra. Prior to his work on Cassandra, Jonathan built a multi-petabyte, scalable storage system based on Reed-Solomon encoding for backup provider Mozy.




Leslie Hawthorn

An internationally known community manager, speaker and author, Leslie Hawthorn has over 10 years experience in high tech project management, marketing and public relations. In March 2012 she joined Red Hat, Inc., where she is responsible for Community Action & Impact on the company's Open Source and Standards team. Prior to Red Hat, she served as Outreach Manager at Oregon State University’s Open Source Lab and as a Program Manager for Google’s Open Source Team, where she managed the Google Summer of Code Program, created the contest now known as Google Code In and launched the company’s Open Source Developer Blog.

It's our goal to actively recruite more female speakers for Berlin Buzzwords. Therefore, if you’re looking for help preparing your abstract, would like to learn more about the conference or are looking for advice on making your speaking engagements more effective, feel free to reach out to Leslie


Michael Stack

Michael Stack is chair of the Apache HBase Project Management Committee  and  a member of the Hadoop PMC.  St.Ack is a Software Engineer at  Cloudera in San  Francisco.





Steve  Loughran

Steve  Loughran is a member of technical staff at Hortonworks, where he works on leading-edge developments within the Hadoop ecosystem, including service availability, cloud infrastructure integration, and emerging layers in the Hadoop stack.Previously, he worked at HP Laboratories on large-scale distributed systems, including cloud computing infrastructures, dynamic Hadoop clusters and configuration management. He is the author of Ant in Action, a member of the Apache Software Foundation, an active committer on the Hadoop core projects; a lapsed committer on Apache Ant and Axis.He lives and works in Bristol, England. For fun he falls off bicycles in the local woodland.



Organisation and administration

Berlin Buzzwords would not be possible without the helping hands ensuring that the conference runs as smooth as it does. Following we have listed a sub set of those people who remain mostly in the background booking hotel rooms, handling registration, talking to the press, taking care of sponsors, setting up the on-site WiFi.


Claudia Brückner

Claudia Brückner is the head of the Berlin Buzzwords Organisation Team. With her background in Service Design Thinking and Cultural Studies, she is looking after the Customer Experience as well as the fringe events during Berlin Buzzwords. 


Daniela Bentrup

Daniela worked for ten years in the areas market research and personnel, before she became part of the newthinking team. Daniela is managing the Berlin Buzzwords press relations as well as social media. She also takes care of all partnership relations and will therefore support our Sponsors, Media- & Eventpartners. Please contact her via: partner(at)


Sylvia Tomala

In 2003 Sylvia broke up with her studies in social and business communication to be trained in organizing evnts and hotel business. As part of the Berlin Buzzwords Organisation Team since 2011, she takes care of all the Berlin Buzzwords Speakers. Sylvia speaks english, polish and german. Get in touch with her via:  speaker(at)

Philip Kaden

Philip Kaden is our photographer documenting the Berlin Buzzwords conference as well as the Barcamp.


On-site helping hands

There are many other helping hands that facilitate Berlin Buzzwords: Thanks to our session chairs Thomas Bodner, Christoph Nagel, Fabian Blechschmidt, Max Heimel, Astro, Matthias L. Jugel, Florian Schilling, Maurice Wolter as well as to our hostess Amelie Drescher and host Paul Lier. Thank you also to everyone at Urania helping make this event successful.




The Barcamp is co-organised by Nick Burch.

nickNick is passionate about open source and open development, and has been involved with the Apache Software Foundation since 2003. Nick is chair of the Apache POI project, and as a member of the ASF helps out with mentoring of new projects, and with community development. When not coding, Nick can often be found helping to run and speak at BarCamps, Geek Nights and technology conferences.




Meetups and Workshops after Berlin Buzzwords

To get people to stay in town longer we have asked several active committers and contributors to various projects to help us organise Meetups/ Hackathons/ Workshops as well as local companies and universities to host them. We'd like to use this space to say thank you to them as well.

On Wed/Thu/Fri we will have a huge list of community organised Hackathons and Workshops. Thank you to all of you helping us make Berlin Buzzwords more interesting by adding space and time for attendees to get an in-depth view of individual projects discussed during the main conference.



A final Thank You goes to Elasticsearch and Cloudera for providing trainings to Berlin Buzzwords attendees on subjects relevant to the conference.