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September 18, 2008

meebo: Scaling Synchronous Web Apps

At NYC Web 2.0 Expo listening to Sandy Jen talking about scaling synchronous apps. Meebo has been around for awhile, now up to 40 million people using the site on a monthly basis.

Meebo started with Apache but switched to lighttpd and found it got them a huge performance gain. They use COMET or long polling, which Apache wasn't as good at.

Their application is written in C & C++, mostly C. They are happy with the performance, but programmers are getting harder to find. Tried memcached, but found that it was not helpful because there isn't a lot of cacheable data.

In the end, your users don't care what technologies you use as long as their experience is good.

Overdesigned code is worse than hacky code. At least with hacky code you can quickly go back, with something overarchitected the complexity.

You don't know things unless you put it out in real life.

Overarching thing Sandy says is that technical solutions are unique for each instance, what works for you will be different for someone else.

Posted by mike at September 18, 2008 5:12 PM