Don't Be Afraid Of the Dark

As DevOps practitioners, we are concerned with both the development of our systems, and their operation in production. With new features, in particular, we are often confronted with doubt and uncertainty about how they’ll behave when they actually reach a live environment. Does that query perform well under load? Have we scaled our capacity enough? Is it worth the effort of adding the caching layer? Does our new system fail as gracefully as we imagined? Are we going to spend the weeks after launch scrambling to fix things? Before launch we are typically in the dark, but the dark doesn’t have to be scary - in fact it can be our best friend and ally.

In this talk, I’ll cover approaches for testing at production scale before release, the benefits and limitations of different techniques, and how to plan for building confidence (with your dev team and your business stakeholders) during the development process. By the end of it, you’ll be ready to take advantage of your “dark” time, and for your next launch to be the best kind of boring.



Ian Malpass

Ian is a Software Architect at Stitch Fix, leading development work on the systems that support Stitch Fix’s stylists. Before that he spent time at GitHub and Etsy. He cares a lot about making ...