The Fifth Elephant 2013

An Event on Big Data and Cloud Computing

(Skip ahead to session proposals)

In 2013, commodity hardware and computing capacity for storing and processing large and small volumes of data are easily available on demand. The bigger issues pertain to questions of how to scale data processing, handle data diversity, manage infrastructure costs, decide which technologies work best for different contexts and problems, and build products from the insights and intelligence that the data is presenting to you.

The Fifth Elephant 2013 is a three-day workshop and conference on big data, storage and analytics, with product demos and hacker corners.

Event format, themes and submission guidelines

The Fifth Elephant 2013 invites proposals on use cases and real-life examples. Tell us what specific problem you faced, which technology/tools worked for your use case and why, how you have developed business intelligence on the data you are collecting, and analytics tools and techniques you employ. Our preference is for showcasing original work with clear take-aways for the audience. Please emphasize these in your proposal.

The conference will have two parallel tracks on 12th and 13th July:

  1. Storage: OLTP, messaging and notifications, databases and big data, NoSQL
  2. Analytics: Metrics and tools, cloud computing, mathematical modelling and statistical analysis, visualization


This year we are adding a preliminary day of workshops, on 11th July, to provide attendees more in-depth, hands-on training on open source frameworks and tools (Pig, Hadoop, Hive, etc), commercial solutions (sponsored), programming languages such as R, and visualization techniques and tricks, among others.

Product demos and sponsored sessions

We have a demo track for startups and companies who want to showcase their product to customers at The Fifth Elephant 2013 and get feedback. Slots are also open for 4-6 sponsored sessions for companies who want to talk about their technologies and reach out to developers, CTOs, CIOs and product managers at The Fifth Elephant. For more information on demo and sponsored session proposals, write to

Commitment to open source

HasGeek believes in open source as the foundation of the internet. Our aim is to strengthen these foundations for future generations. If your talk describes a codebase for developers to work with, we require that it is available under a license that does not impose itself on subsequent work. This is typically a permissive open source license (almost anything that is listed at and is not GPL or AGPL), but restrictive and commercial licenses are also considered depending on how they affect the developer’s relationship with the user.

If you’d like to showcase commercial work that makes money for you, please consider supporting the event with a sponsorship.

Proposal selection process

Voting is open to attendees who have purchased event tickets. If there is a proposal you find notable, please vote for it and leave a comment to initiate discussions. Your vote will be reflected immediately, but will be counted towards selections only if you purchase a ticket. Proposals will also be evaluated by a program committee consisting of:

Emphasis will be placed on original work and talks which present new insights to the audience.

The programme committee will interview proposers who have received maximum votes from attendees and the committee. Proposers must submit presentation drafts as part of the selection process to ensure the talk is in line with the original proposal and to help the program committee build a coherent line-up for the event.

There is only one speaker per session. Attendance is free for selected speakers. HasGeek will cover your travel to and accommodation in Bangalore from anywhere in the world. As our budget is limited, we will prefer speakers from locations closer home, but will do our best to cover for anyone exceptional. If you are able to raise support for your trip, we will count that towards an event sponsorship.

If your proposal is not accepted, you can buy a ticket at the same rate as was available on the day you proposed. We’ll send you a code.

Discounted tickets are available from


The program committee will announce the first round of selected proposals by end of April, a second round by end-May, and will finalize the schedule by 20th June. The funnel will close on 5th June. The event is on 11th-13th July 2013.

Hosted by

The Fifth Elephant - known as one of the best data science and Machine Learning conference in Asia - has transitioned into a year-round forum for conversations about data and ML engineering; data science in production; data security and privacy practices. more

Regunath Balasubramanian


Latency and Fault tolerance in OLTP @ 1.5 billion/day service calls

Submitted Apr 5, 2013

User perceived Availability and Experience is important for any eCommerce site. Achieving this is not easy for distributed systems that run multiple platforms and access multiple resources, data sources. The data sources span MySQL, Key-Value stores and Columnar databases storing OLTP data to the order of tens of millions.
This talk describes how Flipkart built its website to manage Latency and Fault tolerance at scale - millions of requests amounting to 1.5 billion service calls per day.


A good eCommerce web-site would serve millions of pages per day with a fair mix of static and dynamic content per page. Services built on SOA often serve the dynamic content and a request might depend on dozens of these services to render a single page and require MBs of data read from various data sources . Website availability and user experience is affected by latency variance and failures of these services.
One needs to worry about the 75th and 90th percentile response times and good Median and Mean responses just do not suffice.

Compact protocols - Thrift, Protobuf, Avro and Transports - TCP, Http do not address latency variance or provide for fallbacks and graceful degradation.

A number of design patterns and technologies may be used to stop cascading failures, fail fast and recover rapidly.

This talk describes how Flipkart built smart Service Proxies to handle this problem for apps and services running on a number of Platforms - PHP and JVM based, Protocols - Custom, Thrift, JSON-REST, Data Sources - SQL and NoSQL. The talk also covers database technology selection for a number of use cases - MySQL, Couchbase, Redis , including HBase for serving on-line content.

The Flipkart Service Proxies are built using technologies like Netty, Hystrix, Trooper and is influenced by projects like Finagle.

The talk will also feature a demo of the Service Proxy. The links in this proposal also has slides on the Flipkart website tech stack evolution. The actual talk will feature the next gen version of the fk-w3-agent mentioned in the slides


Fair knowledge of technology trends, patterns and OSS.

Speaker bio

Regunath is an architect, developer and mentor with a career span of 16 years. He is currently responsible for building long term
technology vision across Customer Platform teams at Flipkart. Prior to Flipkart, he was Chief Architect at MindTree where he played a number of roles including leading an Architecture services group, building IP based solutions and implementing large scale systems; notable among them was architecting the Govt. of India’s Aadhaar project - the world’s largest biometric identity database.

He is passionate about Open Source and technology trends - recent ones are Big Data and deriving insights from Social Media. He has contributed to Open Source that is used in 90+ countries word-wide.
Regunath has been an invited speaker in various technology forums such as HasGeek Fifth Elephant, OSI days, Microsoft Architecture Days, iCMGWorld Architecture Summit and others. Also blogs frequently and was a guest columnist for

More about him at:

OSS projects:


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Hosted by

The Fifth Elephant - known as one of the best data science and Machine Learning conference in Asia - has transitioned into a year-round forum for conversations about data and ML engineering; data science in production; data security and privacy practices. more