I would intercept these rewards and put them in my backpack for the bus ride home, in order to avoid creating perverse incentives for the operations team. But did anyone call me 'hero'?
Also at that time, I remember asking the head DB guy about a specific metric, and he ran a live query against the database in front of me. It took a while to return, so he used the time to explain how, in an ordinary setup, the query would have locked all the tables and brought down the entire site, but he was using special SQL-fu to make it run transparently.
We got so engrossed in the details of this topic that half an hour passed before we noticed that everyone had stopped working and was running around in a frenzy. Someone finally ran over and asked him if he was doing a query, he hit Control-C, and Twitter came back up.
What really made me mad was when we hired consultants and the contract would end, usually without much success because Twitter's problems were not normal problems, and then they would send us a fancy gift basket with our own wasted money.
Maciej, we are still waiting for you to ship the executive dashboard.
It was a VC-funded welfare program for slackers and I miss it greatly.
That Odeo team was filled with best practices aficionados and the management (including me) was a bit cowardly about being clear that "WE ARE FAILING HARD AND FAST." Damn the practices.
So of course the engineering team freaked out, especially since the CEO managed to find lots of queries that did take the site down.
But I honestly credit that as one of the biggest things that I contributed to Twitter. Having easy SQL access let the CEO dig into the data for hours, ask any question he wanted, double check it, etc. He was able to really explore the bigger question, "Is Odeo working?"
The answer was no. And that's how he decided to fully staff Twitter (twttr then) as a side project, buy back the assets, and set Twitter up as it's own thing.
I think that it really was very close--if we'd moved any slower we would have run out of money before anyone was ready to commit to Twitter. Same story about Rails--without being able to do rapid prototyping we never would have convinced ourselves that Twitter was a thing.
> Using the AWS Management Console, you can easily add read replicas to existing DB Instances. Use the "Create Read Replica" option corresponding to your DB Instance in the AWS Management Console.
I used to work(on backend) on a popular app(in my country) which had a good number of users. One day I was asked to work with some infra/sysadmin folks who wanted to fix some issues with the servers in our inventory. We happily updated kernels and even rebooted servers a few time. I came back to my team and saw them deeply engrossed into production logs. Turns out few of the servers that were "fixed" were actually production servers. I almost shouted the F word when I listed all IPs. This confusion happened because the server guys used data IPs and we used management IPs. This exposed serious miscommunication among our teams. But fun times indeed!
This one was visible from such a great distance, it's a wonder neither of you spotted it as it happened! I love your post — reminds me of BOFH :)
Never understood this mentality but have seen it at many companies. Rewarding someone or some team for heroically fixing something after a catastrophic failure. Talk about misaligned incentives! Reminds me of the Cobra Effect . When you reward “fixing a bad thing” you will get more of the bad thing to be fixed.
Edit: apparently the stories actually are true.
edit: pretty please
While I and you would not do this I’m afraid that it would somehow find a way to work in this case too.
This would not be out of place as a scene in Silicon Valley
The food lived up to the mental image I had after reading the post.
Wait so you stole rewards for a team that was spending time (I assume extra or stressful) on something you didn't do or have any part in. And you want a cookie?
I mean I get it, the company was probably not great in it's infancy. But what?
The HR department in my company does this, and then redistributes the gifts to everyone in a random drawing at the Christmas party.
One year some department got a bunch of PlayStations, and a couple of them ended up in my department. The only thing my department contributed to the kitty was candy. I bet some people in that other department were disappointed.
One flew over the dubcanada's head.
Monolithic architecture. When I did security work I fought this every day. Moving away from it is a nightmare of technical debt and heated debate about who should control what. I'm reminded of a story from the early days of MSN. The legend goes that in the late 90s MSN ran out of one cabinet, a single server. The server had redundant power supplies, but only one physical plug.
This particular problem had nothing to do with a monolithic architecture. Your app can be a monolith, but that still doesn't mean your BI team can't have a separate data warehouse or at least separate read replicas to run queries against.
So, while true the failure mode would be different, "one bad query fucking up your entire system" is just as possible with microservices.
Anything else is simple incompetence and the macro-organisation of the code and/or services is irrelevant.
Wait, I don't understand.
Why would anyone call you hero?
Are you suggesting that the team would deliberately crash the app to receive beers and that by stealing them you stopped this from happening?
Free drinks and free food is the standard here to reward teams when they spend extra unpaid time away from their families.
All of the posts asking the same question are being down voted. Am I missing something?
You said you were a contractor at the time. Unless you were on the management team I fail to see how this was your responsibility to choose what happened.
That it is a joke.
I doubt anyone would risk a comfortable job at Twitter against a few bottles of beers. Even if they are really fancy, that's what... $20-50?
If this had been worded as a "Haha, I stole the bad team's beer" I would have laughed.
However, worded as "where is my reward for being smart and stopping the cobra effect?" that's just an humble brag and plain unfunny.