Another Ganger, Mike Vizard, recently joined the podosphere under the auspice of ACM Queue. In this ACM Queuecast, Vizard talks to Werner Vogels, Amazon CTO, who really surprised me (I am talking as an ex Data Center manager in a mobile operator).
When it comes to Information Technologies, every service at Amazon is a micro-cosmos. A dedicated group of application developers receives total, end-to-end, life-cycle responsibility over the service. This Micro-Cosmos is autonomous, or as Vogels put it: they can develop the service with whatever software development methodology and with whatever technology and tools they see fit – as long as they deliver on time and make sure, constantly, that the service meets its SLA.
This total responsibility leads to an extreme version of the “Not Invented Here Syndrom”. Amazon is not relying on any 3rd party vendor to guarantee its availability, data consistency etc. If a service is designed for no-data-loss, then the application is programmed to guarantee that. If you thought there would be a delegation here to some Enterprise Storage functionality, like Raid, BCV, Snapshots – well, you were wrong.
Some more goodies:
– The design is always paranoiac and pessimistic, i.e. design for failures.
– Resource Sharing? Not in Amazon. Any Service is human, software and hardware self-contained; a total encapsulation.
What about Web Services, Grid Computing, Virtual Machines? Well, I guess you should pick it yourself by listening to the podcast 🙂
Technopod Rating: 9
Werner Vogels, Amazon CTO, ACMQueuecasts 22:40, 20.7 mb, Jan 23rd, 2006
Original Podlink: Discipline and Focus