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Author: engineering

Why does one NGINX worker take all the load?

Scaling up TCP servers is usually straightforward. Most deployments start by using a single process setup. When the need arises more worker processes are added. This is a scalability model for many applications, including HTTP servers like Apache, NGINX or Lighttpd. CC BY-SA 2.0 image by Paul Townsend Increasing the number of worker processes is a great way to overcome a single CPU core bottleneck, but opens a whole new set of problems. There are generally three ways of designing…

Engineering Ethics Blog: What Price Medicine?

Last week I had the privilege of attending the American Physical Society Texas Section’s annual regional meeting, held this year at the campus of the University of Texas at Dallas.  Among several invited speakers was a professor of radiology who spoke about the latest medical imaging techniques being developed for observing biological activity on the molecular level.  As interesting as that was, I want to focus on an offhand remark the speaker made.  He has many friends in the medical…

New York advances drone industry with testing corridor

In this Oct. 17, 2017 photo, Nick Brown, a drone pilot for Pulse Aerospace of Lawrence, Kan., stands beside a Pulse Vapor unmanned aircraft at Griffiss International Airport in Rome, N.Y. New York is investing $30 million in a 50-mile drone testing corridor between Rome and Syracuse for drone research and development. (AP Photo/Mary Esch) Envisioning a day when millions of drones will buzz around delivering packages, watching crops or inspecting pipelines, a coalition is creating an airspace corridor in…

Creating a Customer in PHP – Square Corner Blog – Medium

You can’t have a business if you don’t have any customers, but importing customers from an existing system can be a pain, and sometimes you need to be able to do so programmatically. In PHP, our PHP SDK makes it fairly easy to create these customers using one simple script: The code starts out by loading the PHP SDK that was installed with Composer and then setting the access token for the account. Then you can create a new instance…

Building a Python monorepo for fast, reliable development

Suman Karumuri | Pinterest technical lead, Visibility & Ruth Grace Wong | Pinterest engineer, Core Site Reliability More than 200 million people discover and do what they love on Pinterest every month. We rely on several hundred Python services and tools to power these experiences. The code for these services lives in 100+ Git repositories (except for our Python frontend monolith). Overtime, we found that developing Python applications across a growing number of repos was causing friction and slowing down…

Performing & Preventing SSL Stripping: A Plain-English Primer

Over the past few days we learnt about a new attack that posed a serious weakness in the encryption protocol used to secure all modern Wi-Fi networks. The KRACK Attack effectively allows interception of traffic on wireless networks secured by the WPA2 protocol. Whilst it is possible to backward patch implementations to mitigate this vulnerability, security updates are rarely installed universally. Prior to this vulnerability, there were no shortage of wireless networks that were vulnerable to interception attacks. Some wireless…

Team to debut wearables that warn and wow at UIST 2017

The 2.5-D RetroShape — a smart watch with a shape-deforming back — is among Dartmouth’s offerings at UIST 2017. Credit: © Da-Yuan Huang A watch that works in multiple dimensions and a smart ring that provides calendar alerts are among the top technology Dartmouth College will bring to the 30th ACM User Interface Software and Technology Symposium (UIST 2017). Other technology to be introduced by the Dartmouth team includes a thumb-tip recognition technique that optimizes interaction with computer applications. …

Acoustics of ancient Greek theaters found to be good, not great

Constant Hak (l) and Rémy Wenmaekers in the Epidaurus theater. Credit: Eindhoven University of Technology Tales of the acoustics at the 2300 year-old Greek theater of Epidaurus tend to be told in terms of superlatives. Not actually justified, according to measurements taken by researchers from Eindhoven University of Technology. They are the first to detail the acoustics of three ancient theaters, with over 10,000 measurements, which confirms that when actors speak very loudly, they can be understood perfectly well right…

Team quantifies fatigue using wearables

Two hikers focus on the cognitive tests as part of the R2R WATCH study by Sandia National Laboratories, the University of New Mexico and the National Park Service. Credit: Michael Padilla Can fatigue be predicted? Can life-threatening fatigue be differentiated from recoverable fatigue? A team of researchers led by Sandia National Laboratories is seeking answers to these questions through the Rim-to-Rim Wearables at the Canyon for Health, or R2R WATCH, study, a collaboration with the University of New Mexico and…

Sleek and Fast: Speeding Up your Fat Web Client

Once our RUM measurements and Session-weighted p90 were established so that we would know when we were at least as good as our existing site, we were almost ready to start the hard work of becoming sleek and fast. Knowing that RUM metrics and Session-weighted p90 were only going to be available once a daily Hadoop job completed, and that data from our beta group of internal employees was a bit noisy due to lower volume, we decided to set…