82 Billion Objects in Amazon S3

All Things Distributed

At the end of Q3 2009 we counted over 82 billion objects in Amazon S3. Congrats to the team for providing such a rock solid service! When looking at the graph keep in mind that the first 4 markers are a year apart, but the last one only 6 months

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Amazon is in-world and hiring!

All Things Distributed

Join recruiters and hiring managers from several of Amazon's global offices on July 14, 2009. We'll be in-world from 6am through midnight (Pacific/Seattle time) for the first ever Amazon Second Life Job Fair.

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SXSW 2009: In 350 Words or Less

Tim Kadlec

So here is my recap, in 350 words or less: SXSW 2009. I started working on a recap post of this year’s SXSW, and every time I did, it turned into a short novel. There’s a lot of exciting stuff that goes on there. Since few people, other than say…my mother, want to read about my trip in that much detail, I thought I should trim it down. If you’re going to talk about SXSW, the discussion will inevitably revolve around three topics: presentations, parties and people.

Expanding the Cloud: The Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS)

All Things Distributed

Today marks the launch of Amazon RDS - the Amazon Relational Database Service. Amazon RDS is a web service that makes it easy to set up, operate, and scale a relational database in the cloud.

Expanding the Cloud: Amazon Web Services to support the Federal Government

All Things Distributed

In the past week both Vivek Kundra, the U.S. CIO, and Casey Coleman, the CIO of the GSA, have made very strong statements in supporting the use of cloud computing to power Federal programs. A good example is today's announcement about apps.gov.

Seamlessly Extending the Data Center - Introducing Amazon Virtual Private Cloud

All Things Distributed

At this 3rd anniversary of the launch of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), it is amazing to see the impact this service has had on the industry.

Feedback for Amazon Web Services

All Things Distributed

Ingrained in the DNA of the Amazon Technologist is a single-minded focus on the needs of our customers. The Amazon development process is even called "Working from the customer backwards".

Automating the management of Amazon EC2 using Amazon CloudWatch, Auto Scaling and Elastic Load Balancing

All Things Distributed

The Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) embodies much of what makes infrastructure as a service such a powerful technology; it enables our customers to build secure, fault-tolerant applications that can scale up and down with demand, at low cost.

Making A Dramatic Difference

All Things Distributed

As some of you may know both my daughters are studying Drama in London. Last time when I visited them I met two friends of Kim, Georgia Munnion and Lauren Hopkins. They are all classmates and they are graduating this year.

Good Advice on Keeping Your Database Simple and Fast.

All Things Distributed

Keeping your database simple and fast is often difficult if you use higher level frameworks such as ActiveRecords in Ruby or Java object persistence technologies such as Hibernate. There is a lot of magic that is happening out of sight that you have no control over.

Introducing Amazon EC2 Reserved Instances - A way to further reduce IT costs.

All Things Distributed

Flexibility is a key advantage of using Amazon Web Services; you can obtain resources instantaneously without the headache of owning them. If you no longer need the resource, you release it and only pay for what you have used.

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Expanding the Cloud - New AWS Region: US-West (Northern.

All Things Distributed

By Werner Vogels on 02 December 2009 05:00 PM. All Things Distributed. Werner Vogels weblog on building scalable and robust distributed systems. Expanding the Cloud - New AWS Region: US-West (Northern California). Permalink. Comments (). We have expanded the AWS footprint in the US and starting today a new AWS Region is available for use: US-West (Northern California).

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Powerful New Amazon EC2 Boot Features - All Things Distributed

All Things Distributed

By Werner Vogels on 02 December 2009 05:00 PM. All Things Distributed. Werner Vogels weblog on building scalable and robust distributed systems. Powerful New Amazon EC2 Boot Features. Permalink. Comments (). Today a powerful new feature is available for our Amazon EC2 customers: the ability to boot their instances from Amazon EBS (Elastic Block Store).

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Expanding the Cloud - Amazon EC2 Spot Instances - All Things.

All Things Distributed

By Werner Vogels on 13 December 2009 03:00 PM. All Things Distributed. Werner Vogels weblog on building scalable and robust distributed systems. Expanding the Cloud - Amazon EC2 Spot Instances. Permalink. Comments (). Today we launched a new option for acquiring Amazon EC2 Compute resources: Spot Instances. Using this option, customers bid any price they like on unused Amazon EC2 capacity and run those instances for as long their bid exceeds the current "Spot Price."

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Expanding the Cloud: Expanding Amazon EC2 for Windows

All Things Distributed

Today we have some important news for our Amazon EC2 customers who are running Windows Server and Windows SQLServer instances and who have been looking to extend their coverage for fault-tolerance and locality reasons. Starting today Windows instances can be launched in an additional Availability Zone is the US and they can also be launched in two Availability Zones in Europe

Restructuring IT: Anticipatory Responsiveness

The Agile Manager

Michael Milken , the former junk bond king, has a charitable foundation. His foundation did some research a few years ago that determined that 70% of 7 chronic illnesses - things like diabetes, heart disease, lung cancer and so forth - are preventable through lifestyle change. They concluded that if people took better lifestyle decisions, doctors could focus their energies on enhancing and improving the quality and duration of life.

The Case for Restructuring IT

The Agile Manager

1 As an example, the 2009 CHAOS report from The Standish Group shows that things haven't changed all that much, reporting 44% of IT projects were challenged (late, over budget, and / or with less than required features and functions) while another 24% failed. Business is tough right now, and it’s going to be so for a while. In tough times, you want to be very good at what you do. The more “fighting fit” you are, the more likely you are to survive a challenge.

Are You Ready to Restructure?

The Agile Manager

Restructuring," says Gilles Moec, economist with Bank of America , "is very much the story of 2009." Global business faces unprecedented changes. Earlier this year, I wrote in an article for alphaITjournal.com: Revenue forecasts aren’t materializing, capital structures are proving unsustainable, and operations are being scrutinized for inefficiencies. This, in turn, means that businesses are being completely restructured in how they are capitalized, organized, managed and governed.

Restructuring IT: Organizing for Results

The Agile Manager

Up to this point in this series on Restructuring IT , we’ve looked at how IT has adopted an industrial model. IT has achieved scale, but at the cost of results, as is clear from the low rate of success of IT investments. We'll now take a look at how we can organize IT for results. Professional versus Industrial IT needs to reorganize for results, not scale. Organizing for results requires professionalism as opposed to industrialism.

Join Your Peers at an Agile Governance or Budgeting Event In October

The Agile Manager

October is normally a heads-down month. In addition to being in the home stretch of meeting our yearly objectives, we must dedicate cycles to shaping, communicating and justifying our plans for next year. October is also a busy month for information sharing. The thoughts and ideas that have percolated through the year reach their maturity about this time, and we want to share them before everybody goes on their winter holidays.

Restructuring IT: The Detroitification of IT

The Agile Manager

In previous installments of this series on restructuring IT , we looked at how IT has adopted industrial practices as it has gone in pursuit of scale. As a result, IT bears striking resemblance to Detroit automakers. Let's look at some common characteristics. Sub-Optimal Quality Detroit suffers its periodic crises of quality. There was a joke that made the rounds during the 1970s that you know you have an American car when you get the factory recall notice in the mail.

Restructuring IT: "Too Big to Fail" Doesn't Equal Success

The Agile Manager

By going in pursuit of scale, we’ve created an IT function that is “too big to fail” in many businesses. Companies depend on IT – many can’t operate without it – yet they don’t really understand it. The result is moral hazard. Moral hazard is the proverbial “heads I win, tails you lose” scenario: a person takes boneheaded risks knowing that if they turn sour, somebody will come to their financial rescue.

Restructuring IT: A Different Look at the Business-IT Relationship

The Agile Manager

The relationship between IT and its business partners is notoriously bad. Year after year, surveys by different research organizations report that improving that relationship is a top-10 priority for CIOs. But despite being a high priority for many years running, it hasn’t improved all that much. Before we can make any headway improving that relationship, we must first understand how IT's pursuit of scale is responsible for a lot of the dysfunction.

Learning From Monkeys

Tim Kadlec

While browsing YouTube diligently working, I stumbled upon a video showing how to open a banana like a monkey. I like bananas, and who doesn’t like monkeys, so I gave it a watch. Turns out, I’ve been opening bananas the wrong way my entire life. Basically, for those of you who haven’t seen it, it shows how a typical person opens a banana using the stem.

What I Read in 2009

Tim Kadlec

For 2009, I decided to start actively reading again (something I had done very little of since high school). I managed to get through 38 books and while I’m not exactly setting a goal, I’d like to at least maintain a similar pace this year. If you just want the highlights, I’d say that Neverwhere , Replay and The Road are at the top of my list as far as fiction is concerned. For non-fiction, Brain Rules , Blink and Trade-Off probably top the list.

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

Tim Kadlec

Microsoft made great leaps forward with IE8, and just when I start thinking they deserve a nice pat on the back for embracing standards, they give me another reason to lose faith in them. The recent announcement is that Outlook 2010, like Outlook 2007, will use Microsoft Word for it’s rendering engine. No…you read that right…Word’s rendering engine. A rendering engine that doesn’t support simple CSS statements like float, width or height.

Developing Smarter with Progressive Enhancement

Tim Kadlec

Progressive enhancement is not only a smart idea, but it’s the right idea for anyone looking to produce cost-effective websites. It is alright if your site doesn’t look exactly the same in every browser. In fact, because of factors like font rendering, it’s impossible to maintain the exact same appearance across all browsers. Getting clients to accept that fact is important because it can save them both time and money (not to mention save you a few headaches).

Building a Stronger DOM

Tim Kadlec

In Nate Koechley’s excellent talk on Frontend Engineering , he talks about the importance of building a “stronger DOM” By marking up your site with meaningful elements and attributes, you give your markup more value and provide a richer experience for both users and machines. In addition, a strong DOM provides you with numerous attributes and elements that you can make use of to style the content to your hearts desire.

Ideas and Alibis

Tim Kadlec

Ideas and alibis are very much alike. Everyone has plenty of both. Some are good, and some are bad. The big difference is that while no one has a problem using alibis, very few are willing to consistently act on their ideas (me included). Excuses, Excuses. There are several reasons why people tend to pass on acting on their own ideas. Some of the major ones are fear of criticism, fear of failure, self-doubt, or the feeling that there is not enough time.

The Agile PMO: Becoming a Real Time PMO

The Agile Manager

In the prior installments of this series, we presented a pattern for how PMOs can better bridge the gap between executive and executor: First, we discussed the need to define progress in terms of business needs met and not technical tasks performed, so that we measure in terms of results, not effort. Next, we showed how we can track and forecast progress in these same terms – e.g., by using burn-up charts – so that we have unambiguous line-of-sight into what a team is actually doing.

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Book Review: Object-Oriented Javascript

Tim Kadlec

Who Wrote It? Object-Oriented Javascript is written by Stoyan Stefanov, a web developer at Yahoo. Stoyan’s thoughts on all things web can be found at phpied.com. He also runs a blog on iPhone development , and a site dedicated to Javascript design patterns at JSPatterns.com (it’s been quiet for quite awhile now, but I’m hoping to see it brought out of retirement). What’s Covered? Exactly what you’d expect given the title… object-oriented Javascript!

We're Going Streaking

Tim Kadlec

It’s April. The weather is starting to get nicer, Easter is around the corner…and hundreds of people are going streaking! No, you don’t have to be nervous about heading outside today. This kind of streaking is completely un-offensive (hopefully). Once again it’s time for the annual CSS Naked Day.

A Better Way to Get Educated

Tim Kadlec

As you may remember, secondary education for web development and design is something that interests me greatly. I’ve mentioned before that the curriculum taught in most colleges tends to be dated and in need of definite help. Opera published their Web Standards Curriculum , and that was a great step in the right direction, but The Web Standards Project (WaSP) has taken it to an all new level with their recently launched InterAct Curriculum.

The Agile PMO: Automating Metrics Capture

The Agile Manager

The last piece of the Agile PMO puzzle is to make the data needs of the PMO non-burdensome to delivery teams. It’s all well and good to be able to get quality and performance data, but it has to be easily accessible. If it isn't, we're just taxing the teams that much more. That means we won't get this data timely or efficiently, if at all.

Love It or Leave It

Tim Kadlec

One of the highlights of SXSW this year for me personally, was being able to see a panel with Andy Budd of Clearleft , a person and company for whom I have the utmost respect. The panel was about usability testing and the tools you can use to better know your users, but one of the major takeaways I got had more to do with how to approach your job in general.

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That Time of Year Again…

Tim Kadlec

Last year I attended SXSW for the first time. I had said that I would try to recap the conference, but never really did that. Best laid plans of mice and men and all that. I haven’t really attended any other major conferences, so I don’t have much to compare it with, but the experience was fantastic. So fantastic, in fact, that thanks to the generosity of my employer and a little good luck, I am going to be attending again this year.

New Arrival

Tim Kadlec

Things have been a bit silent around here lately, but I feel for a pretty good reason. As many of you who are on Facebook or Twitter no doubt already know, on February 7th my wife and I had our first child, a little baby girl. Little is a bit relative here…Naomi Adalyn was an ounce shy of 9 lbs and was 21” long. I wanted to get this post up a bit earlier, but as you can probably guess, she’s kept us quite busy.

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The Agile PMO: Measuring Quality

The Agile Manager

In the last installment we took a look at the project management information we get from results-based organization and execution, and how that provides an unambiguous status assessment. But project status data doesn't give us the complete picture: we also need to know that a team is delivering solutions in accordance with all of our expectations, such as quality and maintainability. For the PMO, that means looking at technical and functional quality along side project status.

SocialCorp: Social Media Goes Corporate

Tim Kadlec

Who Wrote It? SocialCorp is written by Joel Postman, currently the Chief Enterprise Social Business Strategist at Intridea , a social app development company. Joel frequently blogs on social media marketing and other related topics at www.socializedpr.com. What’s Covered? In today’s web, a company’s online presence extends far beyond their website.

Come the Hour, Come the Leaders

The Agile Manager

Earlier this week, I published an article called Come the Hour, Come the Leaders in alphaITjournal.com. In it, I point out the acute need for business leadership in today's economic environment and identify six things we can do today to act on a leadership agenda. Today's Financial Times brought some reinforcement to those messages in the first of a four-part series called Managing in a Downturn.

The Agile PMO: Results-Based Execution

The Agile Manager

In the last installment we took a look at why it’s important that project gatekeepers be consistent in terms of effort and results. To understand how we can execute on this, we need to take a look at how teams are organized and execute. How we organize determines how effectively we can define results-oriented “gates." Traditionally, IT teams have organized in silos , working on abstract slices of the business goal (as opposed to the end-to-end).

Redis vs. Memcached – 2021 Comparison

Scalegrid

Redis stands for REmote DIctionary Server, created in 2009 by Salvatore Sanfilippo. Memcached, on the other hand, was created in 2003 by Brad Fitzpatrick.

A Big Day for Microformats

Tim Kadlec

Today was a big day for Microformats - very big. First, they announced that the new value-class-pattern is ready for implementation. The value-class-pattern is a great step forward, as it provides needed accessiblity improvements, and in my opinion, gives the developer a bit more flexibility over how to structure their markup. That was a pretty big announcement in its own right, and I was very pleased to see the new pattern approved and garnering a bit of buzz.