Introducing Keyboard and Quill: A Podcast Exploring Data and Technology Through Time

Tim Berglund
Kristin Crosier
ByWritten byKristin Crosier,Tim Berglund
March 21, 20245 minutes read

We’re thrilled to announce the launch of our new limited series narrative podcast, Keyboard and Quill. Keyboard and Quill is a departure from the typical technology company podcast. Rather than focus on the details of Apache Pinot, or the broader data ecosystem, or the subtleties of real-time data infrastructure, it steps back — way back — and examines the historical threads that run over tens of thousands of years and combine in recent years to create the real-time world we live in. 

In short, it’s an exploration of data and technology through time — a history podcast made by technologists to tell the story of the work they do. If you’re curious about how cultural changes and technological advancements have shaped everything from the roads you drive on to the meals you eat to the complex data architectures that govern modern businesses, then this podcast is for you.

Who is Keyboard and Quill for?

Keyboard and Quill is designed for technical and non-technical listeners who want to learn more about the history of technology through a high-quality, polished listening experience inspired by NPR’s award-winning Radiolab.

Co-hosts Tim Berglund and Rachel Pedreschi will walk you through the events and personas that took us from the wheel to the smartphone, and from the printing press to the complex data ecosystems powering our modern lives. Tim and Rachel combine their own research with interviews they've conducted with academics, technologists, start-up founders, software engineers, and other Silicon Valley professionals.

The first two episodes are now available, with new episodes launching every Tuesday through June 4, 2024. Subscribe to the podcast to make sure you don’t miss out.

Learn more about Keyboard and Quill in this five-minute introductory video:

Meet your hosts, Tim and Rachel

Tim and Rachel are both Silicon Valley database startup veterans. Rachel Pedreschi is a data-driven executive with experience building teams and scalable processes, and she loves getting people excited about technology. Rachel is currently leading Business Development and GTM at claritype, a startup in stealth mode, and her career includes leadership roles at DataStax, Decodable, and Imply.

Tim Berglund currently leads the Developer Relations team at StarTree. He has a background as a full-stack developer and (in the distant past) a firmware engineer, and has previously worked in Developer Relations and Education at companies like Confluent and DataStax.

Rachel Pedreschi, Head of Business Development and GTM, claritype

Tim Berglund, VP of Developer Relations, StarTree

What topics will Keyboard and Quill cover?

During the 13 episodes, Tim and Rachel (and their guests) will discuss topics including:

  • The quickening pace of life

  • Telecommunications

  • Land transportation and mapping

  • Meal delivery

  • Computing

  • Databases

  • Analytics

  • Apache Kafka

  • Apache Pinot

Catch up on all available episodes of Keyboard and Quill

Check out all episodes currently available from Keyboard and Quill below:

Episode 1: From Cave Paintings to the Printing Press

In the first episode, Tim and Rachel journey through 45,000 years of history to explore how our modes of communication have evolved over time. They discuss everything from cave paintings to cuneiform to the printing press, and how technology has driven the relentless acceleration of our pace of life.

Episode 2: From Farms to Factories

We pick up our story on the quickening pace of life with the Industrial Revolution. In this episode, Tim and Rachel examine agriculture, the steam engine, the machine power of factories, the evolution of print, and the advent of the telegraph. News is getting faster, productivity continues to rise, and life won't be slowing down anytime soon.

Episode 3: From Drum Beats to Radio Waves

The pace of innovation in the field of telecommunications over the last 200 years is pretty amazing. But how did we get from drums to morse code, or from the radio to the 5G smartphone? In this episode of Keyboard and Quill (part 1 of 2), we journey through thousands of years of history with Tim Berglund and Rachel Pedreschi as they explore how telecommunication has evolved from drum beats to the telegraph to radio.

Episode 4: From TV to 5G

Voice was the focus of telecommunication for centuries, but now we live in a FaceTime world. How did we go from watching national broadcasts exclusively on giant, heavy, black-and-white televisions in our living rooms to 4K HDR video streaming in our pockets, practically anywhere in the world? In this episode, Tim and Rachel continue the journey of telecommunication from the invention of photography to television to satellites to cell towers, and how they all contributed to the remarkable gadgets we carry around today.

Episode 5: From Travois to Taxis

Let’s travel back in time to explore the ways humans got around together (on land) from prehistoric times to the first taxis in the late 1800s. Tim and Rachel begin this excavation of transportation history where it all started: with our own two feet. With the development of trade and cities, the hunter-gatherer mode of movement was inadequate for a species that needed to expand and travel. From the invention of roads to the primitive sleds known as travois to the all-important wheel to horse-drawn carriages to railroads and the first taxis, human civilization has come a long, long way in how we hitch a ride.

Hear more from the real-time analytics community

Real-time analytics is the next frontier in the event-driven, real-time data revolution. If you are a hands-on practitioner, or if you are a leader in your organization charged with staying on top of the advancements in the industry, this is the event for you. Hear about what thought leaders in the space are doing at Real-Time Analytics Summit 2024, taking place May 7-9 in San Jose, California. Check out the Summit agenda, read Tim’s list of reasons to attend, and then grab your ticket!


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