Zeeto Tech Exchange – Navigating the Technical Landscape

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What to expect when you’re rebuilding a platform from scratch and how to make it out alive.

The Zeeto Tech Exchange Opened its doors this past Thursday, November 10th at Zeeto’s new employee restaurant, “The Questionable Exchange”. We had a great turnout that filled the QE with members of the San Diego Tech community as diverse as their titles. We had everyone from CTO’s, Lead Engineers to Entrepreneurs – all eager to hear about Zeeto’s trials and tribulations defining a system architecture for their platform rebuild.

Zeeto’s own CEO, Stephan Goss bartending at the Tech Exchange. Thanks to Stone Brewing for being our official beer sponsor!

We started the Tech Exchange because we saw an opportunity in bringing the best of the San Diego Tech community under one roof to discuss, debate and network with fellow San Diego tech industry veterans.  To kick off our first series at the Tech Exchange we choose to focus on the complete rebuild of the Zeeto platform as our backdrop. The series will consist of eight parts focused on the technology choices we tackled along the way.

“Navigating the Technical Landscape” was an introduction to the series and gave an overview of our project and what the series will cover in the coming months. Our goal was for attendees to take our approach to picking technology as an opportunity to learn from our process, challenges and learnings to later leverage in their our own projects and we got just that.

CTO ,Matt Ferguson and Senior Engineer, Tyler Winter talking about containers.

To keep the discussion lively we had a Q&A format for the night and great participation from the audience. Questions from the audience included, “What impact does the skill set of your team have on programming language choices?  to “Why didn’t we use more of AWS’ services to solve some of our problems?”. We’re looking forward to more great audience questions in future sessions.

In case you missed it here is a quick overview of the topics future Tech Exchange meetings will cover:

Container Orchestration Tools: When an enterprise-level framework for integrating and managing containers at scale is needed what tools are the best for availability, scaling, and networking? Tools considered included; AWS ECS, Docker Swarm, Rancher, Kuberneties, docker, Mesosphere/DCOS.

Cloud providers: There is a lot to consider when choosing a cloud provider; uptime and SLA’s, deployment models and of course cost. Zeeto considered Azure, AWS and Google Cloud and will discuss whose cloud won in the end and why.

Data Storage: If you have Petabytes of data with no slow down in aggregation in sight it is vital to figure out how and where to store it. The short list for storage options included MongoDB, Cassandra, MySQL, Oracle, Microsoft SQL, Couch, Hadoop.

Event Streams: When choosing a distributed messaging system it’s important to evaluate choices on speed and scalability. We evaluated both Kafka and Akka.

Front End: Zeeto’s core business is at web scale with millions of page impressions for our publishers and advertisers on a daily basis. Explore with us our cutting edge solution for developing and deploying reusable javascript components and containers for our publishers and advertisers. We evaluated Ember, Node.js, React.js, and Angular.js for our technology stack.

Caching: Ignite or Memcache? what web caching tool is better?

Back-End: We debated EXTENSIVELY the merits of PHP, Java, C#, C, and Javascript and well cover our back-end language choice and how we arrived at picking it.

Analytics: At the heart of Zeeto is our data analytics and business intelligence platform. We’ll discuss the continued evolution of data analytics and our evaluation of Pentaho and Tableau and their capabilities for presenting data for customers in standard reports, ad-hoc analysis and the every present request for new data analysis.

Thanks to everyone who attended!  We hope to see you in December when we discuss container orchestration tools. Register at our Eventbrite page for Choosing the Right Production Infrastructure.

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