Tag Archives: Spike Night


A Cheer For Travel Website Operations Folks

velocity2009 home header reg2

Today I’m going to shamelessly put my travel-writing on hold and revert to my normal geek-gal state.

This week, O’Reilly’s Velocity Conference will be happening in San Jose, CA and a couple of my friends from my Amazon days (Jesse and Scott) are involved. Jesse’s a co-chair for heaven’s sake, how could I NOT write in support of their efforts.

There are two overall speaker tracks within this conference: Web Performance and Operations. If you don’t work in technology, you might wonder “what do these terms mean?”, well here you go:

Web Performance is the implementation of engineering methods and techniques used to build performant websites and the identification and instrumentation of metrics required to monitor, manage and maintain site performance. Operations is the discipline of keeping the website up at all times regardless of what happens.

You may think this is totally un-related to travel. Well, it’s not. Take a look at this for example:


Expedia traffic via Serversiders

This chart shows that about 15M people use Expedia.com monthly in the U.S. – and Expedia is just one of the many online travel agencies, travel meta-search engines, blogs and other publications which you and I have become used to using.

Somewhere, someone on a website operations team is carrying a pager which beeps whenever the website you’re using (or writing for) hiccups. Take moment today to say “Thanks”. And if you can’t, because he or she is gone to Velocity, well, you can be sure that your website ops folks will come back with lots of new ideas and information on how to improve your site performance and make the operations hum so you’ll be more than ready for that monster wave of traffic which is going to hit any day now :)

Normal family travel programming will resume on Wednesday.

Current Giveaways: Win a GoGoBabyz Infant Cruizer

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