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NOTE: use Perl; is on undef hiatus. You can read content, but you can't post it. More info will be forthcoming forthcomingly.

All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • by dngor (3383) on 2008.08.06 13:28 (#64227) Homepage

    Hi, chromatic. I work on Delicious, and I've been with the site since before Yahoo! bought it.

    Delicious was not merely migrated. It was redesigned and rewritten from the database up. Several months of development were spent in design and QA (we were in limited beta since September [delicious.com]). The additional forethought and care were warranted since a lot of people rely on us every day.

    Delicious was originally designed for a relatively small number of people. It has been extended, patched, optimized, sharded and cached over time to serve five million users and hundreds of millions of bookmarks. It was always just barely ahead of the growth curve [delicious.com]. In the end, it was too tightly coupled to its small-scale roots to keep up with our accelerating growth.

    The languages we chose are the right tools for their respective jobs. For example, the back end is mainly C++ (which might actually be fashionable compared to Smalltalk). There's even a fair amount of Perl to keep the CPUs and language advocates warm.

    It's a longer story that that, of course. We'll be posting more detail to our blog [delicious.com] soon.

    • Why did you throw away everything, though? You could have fixed the architecture without changing languages.
      • Why did you throw away everything, though? You could have fixed the architecture without changing languages.

        Oh, sure. Everything is just a Simple Matter Of Programming. :)

        PHP on the front end was an administrative requirement. Switching the front end to PHP did not unduly extend our development time. I'm free to tell you this because our founder has already said as much in the surprisingly balanced reddit thread in response to James' article [reddit.com].

        We considered simply bolting a PHP front end onto the original site, but it was not practical. The original user interface was tightly coupled to the site's business

    • The languages we chose are the right tools for their respective jobs.

      I don't know your particular constraints, and I'm happy to accept that, but a three year rewrite with an eleven month beta period seems troubled -- unless that was the schedule from the beginning. I very much look forward to a retrospective.