Fail Whaling

Joined by Json Hoffman, formerly founder of Joyent, the cloud platform on which Twitter was initially hosted, the Oxide friends reminisce about debugging early issues with Twitter and consider its pending Elonification.

Oxide and Friends Twitter Space: April 25th, 2022

Fail Whaling
We've been holding a Twitter Space weekly on Mondays at 5p for about an hour. Even though it's not (yet?) a feature of Twitter Spaces, we have been recording them all; here is the recording for our Twitter Space for April 25th, 2022.

In addition to Bryan Cantrill and Adam Leventhal, our special guest was Jason Hoffman. Other speakers included Joshua Clulow, Matt Campbell and Ian. (Did we miss your name and/or get it wrong? Drop a PR!)

Some of the topics we hit on, in the order that we hit them:

  • Debugging Rails
  • Jason walks chain of events leading to "twttr"
  • @10:46 The first mock up, SMS
  • @13:42 Twitter goes live, early days
  • @19:30 First problems
    • Bryan's debugging story, exceptions and backtraces, index out of bounds
    • Discovery of the problem was not met with gratitude
  • @29:53 Jason tells another problem story, production directories full of junk test files
  • @38:30 Story of the first Hadoop cluster
  • @42:22 Matt's comment on directory limits
  • @46:35 Companies growing up, on-prem and cloud infrastructure
  • @49:26 The Fail Whale
    • Ruby runtime, Ryan Dahl
    • Moved to Java, Scala eventually
    • DTrace and dynamic languages
    • Raku, Parrot VM, MoarVM
  • @59:53 Changing language and hardware landscapes, video presentation sharing, short social media handles, ahl, getting into hockey
  • @1:12:30 Billionaire's playground?
    • Quick diversion, history trivia bet
    • @1:18:43 Moderation
    • Microsoft Tay bot (shutdown 16 hours after launch)
    • Can anything kill Twitter?
    • @1;29:26 Matt: what replaces Spaces?
    • How could an alternative be built? What would it look like?
    • Bryan predicts: change of headquarters, "burning the flag"
    • Adam predicts: resale or IPO within 3 years
  • See also: Jason Hoffman and Bryan Cantrill CTO vs VP Engineering video ~45mins (audio is rough, content is good)
If we got something wrong or missed something, please file a PR! Our next Twitter space will likely be on Monday at 5p Pacific Time; stay tuned to our Twitter feeds for details. We'd love to have you join us, as we always love to hear from new speakers!
Fail Whaling
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