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Category: Amazon

There are 7 posts published under Amazon.

Why Publishers Need Startups

There’s been a lot of commentary recently on the proper relationship between publishing startups and publishers.

 

No doubt, you know the names of many of the startups: Scribd, Oyster, Inkling. There are more and more every day, especially in the category that’s one keynote speech away from being over-hyped – ”Netflix for ebooks”.

 

In contrast, it’s getting lonelier for publishers, especially at the top. The merger between Penguin and Random House (PRH) this year left just four other major publishers: HarperCollins, Macmillan, Hachette, and Simon & Schuster, collectively called the Big Five. Industry insiders are so sure that the PRH merger is the beginning of a trend, they’re practically taking bets on who’ll be next. With the consolidation of so much content into such a small group, startups working in the book industry inevitably have to cater to at least a few of the Big Five.

 

For their part, the Big Five seem happy to talk. Publishing conferences these days are filled with exciting stories of promising meetings between a publisher’s top brass and a string of plucky young startups. If the meetings go very well, big publishers may even invest in the startup through a corporate venture arm. Superficially, there’s a lot of waxing lyrical, but underneath it all, money really is changing hands. It looks like publishers are starting to get behind innovation.

 

And this is where the debate begins. Publishing veteran, Mike Shatzkin, argues that big publishers don’t need startups, because they don’t really need innovation. Moreover, he says that publishers’ support of startups is much more about keeping one eye open than actual innovation. Amazon taught publishers that startups can seriously disrupt their industry, so they know it’s wise to stay informed about any changes on the horizon. When it comes to working with startups to actually bring about change, Shatzkin says big publishers have no incentive. The best example is Scribd’s new ebook subscription service:

 

HarperCollins has thrown itself in with Scribd and none of the other major publishers have. If Scribd makes this work, they’re not going to tell Simon & Schuster, “you’re not going to get to come in now because you didn’t at the beginning.” So, big publishers know that they don’t need to move now.

 

For publishers with so much influence over the industry, there’s simply no reason to change the status quo. And even if change comes, the Big Five are each large enough to wait and adapt at their own pace. So, Shatzkin says, startups need publishers, but publishers don’t need startups.

 

However, as Twitter quickly showed, people didn’t find that argument convincing.

 

The status quo is shifting, and it’s shifting towards a company which is largely ambivalent about publishers’ profits – Amazon. If there’s one thing publishers are certain of, it’s that Amazon is eating more and more of their lunch, through extreme discounts, used book sales, and self-publishing. A conservative approach from the Big Five certainly isn’t going to change that.

 

Unfortunately, as Andrew Rhomberg points out, none of the publishers have a strong strategy for dealing with Amazon’s growing influence and each wishes the others would spend the money and time to handle it. It looks like a prisoner’s dilemma.

 

This is where startups come in. If the only way to compete with Amazon is to innovate quickly, and the big publishers don’t have the time, money, or skillset to do that, they need to partner with a startup which can. It’s their best hope to make themselves competitive in an unavoidably malleable market. The race is on, and resting now only means they’ll have to run faster later.

 

While it may be true that most or all of the Big Five can afford to wait and adapt to change as it comes, they’d have a much bigger advantage if they were able to shape that change from the inside. Rather than being forced to accept whatever market reality a new startup (or more likely Amazon) brings about, publishers would be able to direct the path of new innovation.

 

Look again at the story of HarperCollins and Scribd. The fact that HarperCollins was the only major publisher to give Scribd access to so much content shows they know the advantage of being “inside the club” at the beginning. Of course, if ebook subscriptions are shown to be a profitable business, the other publishers can sign up later, but they’ll have much less input into how the system works. HarperCollins knows the only company capable of making ebook subscriptions work without the backing of any of the Big Five is Amazon, so actively supporting a competing startup is a smart move.

 

It’s this kind of situation which ensures publishers do need startups. Publishers may not be inclined to innovate when left to their own devices, but with Amazon lurking behind them, they need something to move them forward – fast.

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The Gadget Lover's Amazon

Love can be crazy, and when it is for gadgets, it couldn’t be crazier! “The Gadget Flow” understands your immense attraction for gadgets and that is why it has come up as an online platform to keep you updated with the coolest gadgets on the web.

 

Founded in 2012 by Cloudie Co. The Gadget Flow is the ultimate buyer’s guide for gadgets. Its goal is to enhance everyone’s online shopping experience by discovering and showcasing the coolest gadgets available on the web in one location.

 

Included in The Gadget Flow is the wish list option. The feature allows you to keep track of your favorite gadgets by creating a private wish list for future reference. The team behind the scenes is constantly optimizing and enhancing the UI of the website and app in order to convert simple website visits or app downloads into unique and engaging experiences.

 

The initial idea came to us in August 2012. We were struggling to find some cool gift ideas and realized that we weren’t the only ones. Within 2 days we managed to launch the first version of The Gadget Flow and more than 5,000 people visited our website within 24 hours; clearly it was a sign that people loved the concept.

 

We are obsessed with great design and quality content. That’s one of the reasons why Gadget Flow became successful in the first place. Each gadget we publish goes through quality control and has to be approved by at least four to five people in order to get showcased. By following this strategy, we’ve managed to have a collection of more than 2,500 handpicked gadgets.

 

We’ve helped entrepreneurs and innovators turn brilliant ideas into real gadgets and are proud of that. We are dedicated in finding you the coolest gadgets of the web and in making your life easier. That’s our goal, that’s our passion, and 14M visitors per year prove that we are doing it right.

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Top Startup and Tech News Today: 7 Things You Missed Today

1. Amazon Introduces AWS Activate Services Package To Help Startups Grow Via The Cloud

 

Amazon’s Web Services department is trying to appeal to startups through the launch of AWS Activate. AWS Activate is a package of resources and materials that are specifically tailored to help young businesses and their cloud-based needs grow. It is expected to intensify the rivalry with Microsoft and Rackspace. AWS includes AWS credits, training, developer support, and a startup community forum that also provides advice and a wide array of “special offers” from third parties. The packages comes in two forms, “Self-Starter,” which any startup can apply for, and “Portfolio,” which specifically reaches out to startups that are involved in accelerators, incubators, or other programs intended to help startups grow.

 

2. Twitter’s New Comcast Deal Could Have You Watching TV From Tweets

 

Comcast has just inked a deal with Twitter that puts in the addition of a “See It” button on tweets regarding NBCUniversal shows. The initiative should work as follows – if you’re browsing your feed and see a tweet regarding a NBCUniversal show, you will see a “See It” button. When you click that button, you will be taken to a card that has relevant information about the show, and allows you to DVR or watch the program on TV or online. This partnership will also let Twitters users set reminders for upcoming shows and purchase movie tickets on Fandango. The specifics of this detail, such as when this is to launch, have not been revealed.

 

3. Flickr App Gains Auto-Upload Feature In iOS 7 Update

 

Everyone was a bit apprehensive when Flickr was acquired – but, with several major updates including filters and a grid UI just passing over, it seems as though Flickr has had quite a busy seen. Another update for Flickr has just arrived – but this time for the iOS7. iOS7 devices can now upload from the camera roll directly to Flickr servers at full resolution. Sharing is set to private by default, but this can be changed. The Flickr editor will provide tools such as automatic photo straightening, and various other options. And to users worries about clogging up their Flickr storage – Flickr is giving out a free terabyte.

 

4. World’s First Curved Smartphone Hits South Korea Market

 

On Thursday, Samsung launched the world’s first smartphone that had a curved display screen. The Galaxy Round, which has a 6.7 inch concave handset made to fit into the curve of a user’s palm, has hit stores in South Korea. Samsung has not provided a date for its global release. Curved screens, which are touted as being lighter and thinner than current display panels are a new and budding interest in the smartphone industry. This new phone is powered by Google’s Android System and features a 2.3 GHz quad-core processor. It is selling for roughly $1,000 American dollars in South Korea.

 

5. Twitter’s Event Parrot Claims To Be An Experiment In Breaking News Alerts

 

What is Twitter doing now? A mysterious account called “EventParrot” might be Twitter’s big next thing. EventParrot’s profile promises “direct messages that help you keep up with what’s happening in the world.” This is not the first time that Twitter has tested new features through an account; The Twitter account MagicRecs eventually spawned the automatic suggestion list for twitter users. Although there has been no official verification on EventParrot’s status from Twitter, EventParrot has been snagging thousands of followers, including a large number of Twitter employees and associates. This afternoon, Twitter sent out a DM alerting followers to the kidnapping of Libya’s prime minister.

 

6. iPhone 6 Said To Feature Display Around 5 Inches; iWatch Is More Than Just A Smartwatch

 

Reports about the iPhone 6 have all claimed that the iPhone 6 will most likely feature a larger display. Apple is said to be currently screen testing up to 6 inches for its next iPhone. Cantor Fitzgerald’s Brian White reported that his meeting with an unnamed Apple component supplier has convinced him that next year’s iPhone 6 will have a much larger screen. White also says that Apple will soon be launching iWatch, and that the device will be much more than a smartwatch. White describes the iWatch as more than an extension of an iPhone. Instead, he called it a “multi-purpose gateway in allowing consumers to control their home.” The iWatch will reportedly let users control their home through options like changing the temperature and turning lights on and off.

 

7. Foursquare’s Real-Time Recommendations Now Being Pushed To iOS

 

This past summer, Forusquare rolled out real-time recommendation features for Android users. Now, this feature is heading to iOS, to a small batch of users, as part of a new software update. Users will see push notifications appear on their iPhones, suggesting places of items of interest, like a cocktail at a specific bar or restaurant. This app also comes with a “nearby” button that lets users keep tabs on which friends are close to them, as well as the friends’ most recent check-ins. Foursquare plans to put this feature “in everyone’s hands” very soon.

 

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Top Tech and Startup News: 7 Things You Missed

Below is today’s top technology and startup news.

 

1. $6200 Bitcoin Heist Threatens Android Operating System

Hold onto your digital wallet. As expected, flaws in operating systems are being exploited to “pilfer” bitcoin. Google developers confirmed the cryptographic vulnerability, claiming there is a serious threat to “hundreds of thousands” of Android apps.

Undoubtedly, this is bad press for Bitcoin. Yet, this is even worse news for Android, with over 90% of mobile malware being detected on this mobile operating system.

Update: Today, it was reported Google is distributing patches through the Openhandset Alliance.

Here’s a quote from Alex Klyubin, a Google security engineer who first reported the situation:

“We have now determined that applications which use the Java Cryptography Architecture (JCA) for key generation, signing, or random number generation may not receive cryptographically strong values on Android devices due to improper initialization of the underlying PRNG.”

http://arstechnica.com/security/2013/08/google-confirms-critical-android-crypto-flaw-used-in-5700-bitcoin-heist/

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=271486.0/

 

2. Google Blocks Microsoft’s YouTube app

Just days after announcing the release of the YouTube app on Windows Phone, Google has officially blocked the app.

This action was in response to errors which started to pop up this week. Google stated the full YouTube experience could not be enjoyed with the current browser.

Here’s a quote from a Google spokesperson:  “It has been disabled. We value our broad developer community and therefore ask everyone to adhere to the same guidelines.”

http://www.theverge.com/2013/8/15/4624706/google-blocks-window-phone-youtube-app

3. Washington Post has been Hacked by Syrian Electronic Army

It’s been a big week for the Post. After Jeff Bezos announcement to buy the Post for an estimated $250 Million, the website is now being hacked. Reportedly, readers of some articles are being redirected to the Syrian Electronic Army website.

http://allthingsd.com/20130815/washington-post-site-is-hacked/

4. “Julian Asssange with a Hypodermic Needle” - The Silk Road drug peddling website to be featured in magazine

He’s the Al Capone of the internet, known more commonly as Dread Pirates Roberts, and has been carefully building a website to meddle drugs over the last two years. And, these are not just your typical over-the-counter drugs. We’re talking heroine, meth, crack, LSD and ecstasy - all mailed through our local, friendly post office.

Forbes plans to run a full-feature article on Roberts.

5. Paypal freezes IndieGoGo campaign worth over $100,000 - then reverses the decision

With 9 days to go in the campaign, a Google Glass competitor ‘GlassUp’ was told they will only receive “a tiny amount of the funds.” The Italian hardware manufacturer would have been greatly hampered by this decision. But, after receiving mainstream press, Paypal reversed their decision stating:

“We looked into what was happening with GlassUp and corrected the situation earlier today. GlassUp now has access to all of the funds that they’ve raised on Indiegogo through PayPal. We think they are developing a fascinating product and don’t want to impede their innovation in any way.”

http://venturebeat.com/2013/08/14/glassup-raised-100k-on-indiegogo-but-paypal-is-refusing-to-pay-up/

 

6. Awesome Fashion Designer Fights Government Surveillance

Here’s one way to speak out against Government surveillance. An activist and designer has created an anti-drone garment, resembling a burqa to demonstrate the seriousness of our situation. The garment reflects heat, masking the wearer’s thermal signature while reducing visibility to infrared sensors. You can check it out here:

Adam Harvey / ahprojects.com

http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/designers-trying-to-help-people-fight-government-surveillance/2013/08/15/824faf84-0533-11e3-88d6-d5795fab4637_gallery.html#photo=7

 

Fashion designer fights against surveillance

Fashion designer fights against surveillance

 

 

7. Design Your Heart Out: Getty Releases 4600 Amazing Images to the Public

In a world of stock photos and vector art, the newest announcement by Getty is a pleasure to hear. Perhaps one of the World’s finest collections of artwork is now open to the public, free of use. The iniative, which sets a precedent for other art collections, is called the Open Content Program and is free to use.

You can browse the collection here: http://search.getty.edu/gateway/search?q=&cat=highlight&f=%22Open+Content+Images%22&rows=10&srt=a&dir=s&pg=1

 

daily tech news

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Tech and Startup News: 7 Things You Missed Today

Tech and startup news for August 5th, 2013

1. Government scientists reveal what they’ve come up with to make civilian internet faster, safer, and more efficient through quantum cryptography.”

US government laboratory scientists reveal that they’ve been operating a network that communicates in an exceptionally safe and potentially “hacker-resistant” environment since 2011. They have achieved this by using something called “quantum cryptography.”

What is quantum cryptography? Imagine the few seconds gap between the next loaded page when you click “buy” while online shopping. “That’s because of the cryptography,” says Hughes, a member of the laboratory team. It takes time to create a secure line to transmit sensitive information, like your card number, between your laptop, eBay, and your bank. But “in our case that just wouldn’t happen,” says Hughes, “in principle [our invention] could speed up the Internet.”

Researchers say that this hacker-resistant internet could be swiftly and cost-effectively applied to civilian internet. At consumer level, this would mean a safe and speedier internet when you go online, search up things on Google, and online shop. It would also help keep businesses and government institutions safe - secrets could finally stay private.

 

http://www.theconnectivist.com/2013/05/declassified-the-governments-quantum-internet/?utm_source=taboola

 

2. The Washington Post To Be Sold To Amazon.com Founder Jeff Bezos

 

Jeff Bezos, who was made famous by his entrepreneurship, is purchasing the Washington Post for a hefty sum of $250 million. Bezos will become the new and sole owner of the Washington Post when the sale is complete. The Post Co, who currently runs the Washington Post, will change to an undecided name and continue as a publicly traded company without the Washington Post.

 

The Washington Post has been the center of breaking domestic issues. Reporters from the Washington Post broke news of Watergate, and in June, the National Security Agency’s surveillance program. However, financial issues forced the company’s board to consider selling in order to bring in revenue.

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/washington-post-to-be-sold-to-jeff-bezos/2013/08/05/ca537c9e-fe0c-11e2-9711-3708310f6f4d_story.html

 

3. The Story of Jaclyn Konzelmann: “Why I Quit Microsoft To Join A 5 Person Startup In Toronto”

When Jaclyn Konzelmann was working in Seattle for Microsoft, she would have told you that she loved it and would never leave. Now, she is currently in Toronto, sleeping on air mattresses after taking a huge pay cut because she is “homeless.” Although her life may have gotten harder, she is happier - and she is always surprised that people show no shock when she tells them her story.

Read the 6 things that drove her away from Microsoft and her journey leaving the software giant behind at http://jaclynkonzelmann.tumblr.com/post/29070457063/why-i-quit-microsoft-to-join-a-5-person-start-up-in

 

4. FBI might be using malware to try to expose anonymous identities.

Over the weekend, security researchers at Tor noticed an anonymous “darknet” on their network. Some hacker was trying to use a custom made malware to identify its users. According to Wired’s sources, this hacker was not a random stranger - it was a member of the FBI.

This is worrying for advocates of privacy because Tor’s goal is to protect the anonymity of its users. The hacker got in through a security flaw in Firefox and identified users on websites hosted by Freedom Hosting. The telltale signs that this hack was a FBI operation are stemmed in the details of the hack. The hack took place in Reston, Virginia, miles away from the FBI’s headquarters. And, instead of breaking into the website to build a backdoor and steal usernames and passwords (like most hackers would have done), the malware simply identified users in an “evidence-gathering” way.

One possible reason for the monitoring of this website is Freedom Hosting’s infamous reputation for being a favorite destination for child porn. Anonymous actually targeted the hosting service in 2011 for hosting illicit and child pornographic material. Last Thursday, chid porn kingpin Eric Eoin Marques was arrested in Ireland - if the FBI was participating in an investigation related to Marques and his contacts in the United States, Freedom Hosting would be one of the primary places to look at.

On one hand, child pornography is highly illegal and highly awful, so it makes sense to do what you can to stop it. But on the other hand, it seems as though the government is inching towards breaking privacy lines day after day. Is this a step in the right direction for justice or is this a step towards a slippery slope that will one day lead to a complete lack of privacy for the American citizen?

 

http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2013/08/is-the-fbi-trying-to-expose-the-anonymous-internet-using-malware/

5. The Rise Of The Hardware Startup

 

GABA, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving networking between German-American and Californian businesses will host “The Rise Of The Hardware Startup” next week in Palo Alto.

GABA has assembled a panel of experts, with expertise ranging from corporations to startups to manufacturing and investing. The event takes place August 15th and costs $25-$34.

http://www.bizjournals.com/sanjose/news/2013/08/05/coming-up-rise-of-the-hardware-startup.html

 

6. Too busy or too lazy? There’s a startup for that.

It’s a new trend: startups catering to people who can’t - or won’t - do something for themselves.

If you don’t want to clean the house, you hit up Exec or Homejoy. If you don’t want to go grocery shopping, you can have Instacart bring your groceries to your door. If you don’t feel like cooking, Hasty will bring you healthy, gourmet cooked meals. Prim will pick up and do your laundry for you. And if you somehow manage to get sick, you can call Mediacast and have them find you a doctor who makes house calls.

The average salary of a Bay Area employee is estimated at $101,278 in 2012. Long working days and a high salary leads to a propensity to pay others to do your chores for you - as can be seen in the successfulness and wide use of these startups. For example, TaskRabbit, a startup that connects you to people willing to do your errands, is popular with many big tech names. An software engineer admits to using TaskRabbit to have someone stand in  the Apple iPhone 5 line on opening day. Roy Bahat, former IGN Entertainment president, admits to have hired a TaskRabbit to drive his car from meeting to meeting.

Although some of the startups may seem impractical it is clear there there is a market for laziness and a lack of time in the Bay Area, and these startups are definitely exploiting it.

 

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2013/08/05/too-busy-too-lazy-theres-a-startup-for-that/?iid=HP_River

 

7. 10 Sci-Fi Hacks That Are Now a Reality

Ten things you can now do thanks to the advancement of technology: Remote-Control a car; Kill someone with technology (hack their pacemaker, hack their heart); Spy on someone by hacking their phone; Impersonate a cell phone tower; Monitor people through their TV; Hijack a house through home automation systems; Induce power outages through cyber attacks; Spy on surveillance cameras; Spy on entire cities and Clone employee’s access badges to gain access to private facilities by scanning the badge.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-kennedy/10-scifi-hacks-that-are-n_b_3709414.html

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Mac or PC or Linux? It Doesn't Matter

When you look around at all the software that’s being written afresh nowadays- without any legacy whatsoever, you’ll notice something - the product looks and feels and behaves exactly the same across all your devices and exhibits the same behavior on all operating systems. And most likely - it will be a web based application.

 

This behavior in software is remarkable because it used to take tons of work to make software behave this way merely a decade ago. When the web was still largely static and ‘software’ meant “application program that runs on your desktop”, there were lots of successful software products that would only work on a specific platform or an operating system. How did they become successful even though they had this limitation? Well, most of the world was running windows and the software was written to work with windows. So, they were adopted by the masses and users were happy. Meanwhile, the software makers made a lot of money.

 

Web 2.0 changed all of that- not overnight but it started the process of erosion. Erosion takes time. And it has taken time - almost 10 years. But erosion is powerful- it can reduce mountains to soil. Almost no one writes software that is targeted for the desktop anymore-unless it is for a highly specific problem and for a highly specialized domain. Since most start-ups do not target either, almost no software start-up makes desktop software. (Even if they do, they will have a web version.) Instead, they design software that runs on any machine, running any OS, and which works on all browsers. We will  see this trend rise and its adoption by big companies will grow because of the way the web has become integrated into our lives.

 

This means that companies that have relied on operating systems for income will see a decrease in profits (read Microsoft) - unless they find other means. A bit less obvious, perhaps, is the fact that there is a huge potential for a start-up that owns the web application development platform. In other words, make it really easy for people to create software for the web, and you will be the winner.

 

This realization has already dawned on a couple of companies - Apple and Google most prominently, but they have been rather [intentionally?] narrow in their application of the idea. They have both created a closed ecosystem for developers- Apple with its App Store and Google with its Play Store. So, the developers are still making two versions of all their products. And Amazon is quietly trying to get a foot in the door with its Kindle e-book reader.

 

Enormous progress has been made in web development in recent years. JavaScript 6  is bringing a host of new features - websockets are finally coming to the browser, HTML 5 has started revamping the way web developers write code and server-side frameworks are making the lives of developers pain-free.

 

There have been some pivotal moments in the short history of software development (to quote Peter Siebel “It has lasted for less than one human lifetime”). The introduction of the first computer - the Eniac was one of them. Then came the punch-card driven computers, the introduction of the FORTRAN programming language, high-level language LISP, the microprocessor era, C and C++, Java and the web 1.0 in the 1990s and Ajax during the last decade. I believe this decade is the one in which in which web apps will really take off.

 

 

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Lessons From Amazon: The Modern Enterprise

 

Amazon Enterprise Lessons

 

The Enterprises we admire are those that stand the test of time; those who do great things with leadership and ability. While Amazon is not very old, they have done some very dramatic things from inception. Whether it’s building the biggest cluster on Earth (AWS) or the biggest store, Jeff Bezos and company have been kicking butt. It’s true that Amazon runs at what I would describe as “Vanishingly thin” margins, but they have built what looks to be a sustainable business that anyone would be proud to own. It was not always this way, particularly when we talk about software development at Amazon.

 

Once upon a time…

 

Amazon was growing, like nothing ever grew before to be honest. With this rampant evolution, engineers spent more time making stuff work than making stuff optimal, a perfectly natural consequence of a quick pace of innovation, but one that inevitably creates technical debt. What is Technical Debt? Well, when you build things quickly, you do it in a way that may not be optimal long term; it was just the quickest answer that worked. Rich Hickey, founder of Clojure and Lisp enthusiast, has a great presentation called Simple made Easy which discusses software design choices. I won’t spoil Rich’s lecture, but there’s one slide from his presentation that really stuck with me (you should definitely go watch that presentation by the way. It’s awesome). Anyways, here’s the slide I’m talking about.

 

You can see that in this picture, Easy gets you to market faster, but Simple increases your velocity over time. In some projects, an easy fix is acceptable, but for the majority of projects, doing things in the easiest manner will create problems down the road. Thus, Simple is better than Easy, but Simple doesn’t mean uncomplicated, in fact quite the contrary. Simple actually means the complexity is hidden from the user, which is the real value of APIs.

 

Ok but what does this have to do with Amazon?

 

Amazon was growing really fast, and doing a lot of things the easy way. As Amazon grew and services evolved to be bigger and badder, the easy fixes started to break at an alarming rate. It was clear to the management team (I credit a lot of prescience here) that if something didn’t change, Amazon was going to eventually stop growing because of Technical debt. Jeff Bezos set out a series of rules that were going to change his Enterprise, I like to think of this as the origin of Modern Service-Oriented Architecture. The rules were:

 

  • All teams will henceforth expose their data and functionality through service interfaces.
  • Teams must communicate with each other through these interfaces.
  • There will be no other form of inter-process communication allowed: no direct linking, no direct reads of another team’s data store, no shared-memory model, no back-doors whatsoever. The only communication allowed is via service interface calls over the network.
  • It doesn’t matter what technology they use.
  • All service interfaces, without exception, must be designed from the ground up to be externalizable. That is to say, the team must plan and design to be able to expose the interface to developers in the outside world. No exceptions.
  • The Mandate closed with: Anyone who doesn’t do this will be fired.  Thank you; have a nice day!

 

Jeff set out to re-architect his Enterprise. The point of APIs is simple: services evolve dynamically, but their methods of access should be static. That means that it doesn’t matter what you use to deliver the service, I will always make the same request to you and it’s your job to figure out how to answer this request.

 

An example:

 

Situation: A performance engineer needs information about how fast amazon.com is loading.

Problem: The Web Analytics team just changed from MySQL to PostgreSQL.

 

The old way of doing things: The performance engineer will run the SQL query he’s been given and it may or may not work depending on how the database migration was done.

The new way of doing things: The performance engineer makes an API request that the Web Analytics team has to fulfill.

 

Under the old way of doing things, interoperability between services was hit or miss depending on who you knew in that department or how much you knew about their systems. Under the new way of doing things, the Web Analytics team can’t deploy a new database without first ensuring that database can respond to API requests from other teams. The old way creates software fiefdoms and the new way creates services anyone can consume.

 

Modern Enterprise Software Development

 

The truth is nobody wants to wait anymore. Your board doesn’t want to wait, your customer won’t wait and your employees won’t wait either. Business has to evolve to respond to the demands of modern commerce. When you expose the capabilities of your business as services, everyone wins, which is why we’re working so hard to expose Telecom as a service in ours. At 2600hz, we see a competitive advantage in exposing Telecom services to the Enterprise, not because everyone needs telecom, but because when you do you don’t want to have to go outside your walls to get it.

 

Traditional, and manual, database integrations are irrational in modern software development. Exposing your technology via API speeds the pace of software development and prevents the Silo’ing of data (putting data into a warehouse never to be heard from again). This is a more sensible way of exposing data and it is how all modern software companies operate.

 

Service Oriented Architecture is here to stay. If your business provides services, it would be wise to at least consider exposing those services via API; you might be very surprised by what people do with your technology.

 

Are you working on a product or service that could use some telecom attention? We’d love to chat with you! Contact [email protected]hz.com today to learn more about our platform and how you can put our APIs to work!

Joshua Goldbard is a VP at 2600hz, the Cloud Telecom company. He’s a complete geek, loves beer and electronic music. Occasionally, find him at Toronado in San Francisco debating the merits of audio codecs..

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