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Nov 22
2017

The Service that Saved the Day When Kim Kardashian Broke the Internet

Ruby Nahal, EngineerBy Ruby Nahal, Senior Engineer

It all starts in the cloud

Cloud computing is the on-demand delivery of IT resources. This includes computing power, database storage, and applications through a cloud services platform via the internet.

A Cloud services platform owns and maintains the physical servers, the network-connected hardware required for these application services and the redundancy for high availability. You then provision the resources you need through a web console and you pay for what you use.

Follow the leader

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has recently emerged as a leader in infrastructure as a service (Iaas) and as a public cloud. This means anyone can upload virtual machines, store data, and run jobs in the cloud just by filling in a few Web forms. AWS lets companies buy powerful computing power cheaply and whenever they need them to handle traffic, to store media, to power a database.

AWS allows companies and individuals avoid the hassle of buying and running their own hardware, while also letting them pay for only what they actually use. Everyone from startups to big companies and government agencies uses AWS. You might know AWS better as ‘the servers that run Netflix, Spotify, and Instagram.’

AWS offers a wide range of services that help organizations move faster while lowering IT costs and supporting scalability. Some argue the cost factor, but, moving to AWS lets you get out of the three-year hardware lifecycle loop which is a harder hit to a business’ overhead than a month to month pay-what-you-use cost.

New kid on the (IT) block

Traditional IT hammered AWS at the beginning. Have you considered the security risks of moving to the “cloud”? Go ahead, play with it for dev and test purposes if you must, but do not put anything serious ‘up there’. Reactions of this type left an opening in the market for other cloud providers such as Rackspace, whose roots in hosting and managed services enabled them to market offerings that better suited enterprise IT.

Meanwhile, a funny thing happened to the way enterprises procure technology. With or without the blessing of IT at large, managers and IT decision-makers are increasingly going directly to providers for SaaS apps or IaaS offerings that need cloud infrastructure from the likes of AWS to scale properly and meet the ever-increasing variable demands of businesses today.

You can catch glimpses of the vastness of AWS, but it’s hard to get a sense of the true importance of the service. What’s most captivating about AWS is that it works in the background, noiseless, unseen, and powerful, never announcing itself. Here are some examples of technological, social, economic, and cultural infrastructure AWS powers:

  • AWS is what kept Paper Mag’s servers from breaking when it (and Kim Kardashian) broke the internet.
  • AWS provides the guts that allow Netflix to stream billions of hours of movies and TV shows and lets Spotify host millions of albums, so both the modern habit of unplanned binge-watching and binge-listening is made possible by the services.
  • IMDb uses AWS to host search data for the IMDb magic search feature, finding the movie or person you’re looking for in just a few key presses.
  • When Healthcare.gov was being revamped, parts of the website were moved to AWS.
  • Even the police body camera debate turns on AWS. Taser’s hosted service for body-cam footage and other kinds of digital evidence, Evidence.com, is actually a shell built on AWS.
  • Not too long ago, the CIA moved much of its computing power to a custom AWS setup.

Here at TekTegrity, we are using AWS to host our internal servers. It gives us peace of mind knowing that we have a scalable and highly available system to support our clients. Our Engineers are AWS certified with hands-on AWS expertise so we can help our clients by offering consulting services if they are looking at moving to AWS.

About Ruby //@RubyNahal // Ruby hails from India with a flair for cooking traditional cuisine and a deep love of learning (you may find her buried in a book, non-fiction of course) and a real passion for all things tech. For her, enhancing people’s lives via well-executed technology solutions has always been more than a job, and it also makes Ruby a perfect fit for our team; she gets our mission to the core. As far as technical chops, Ruby is bar none. She holds a Master’s Degree in IT, multiple certifications and awards in Network and Security Administration, led several R & D teams and worked for five years as an Infrastructure Architect in Canada. Need we say more? Read Ruby’s story here >>