Cloud Orchestration, Lazarus and Interning at Twilio
There are a few technical interview strategies everyone knows: communicate your thoughts, give yourself time to think, and keep calm. Absent among these, of course, is coming up entirely blank for a question. So when in the interview for an engineering internship my manager asked, “What experience do you have with distributed systems?” I took a deep breath and, cringing a little, replied, “None, yet. But I’m smart and I learn fast, and I’m interested to learn by working in one.” This was true. I’d been curious about the subject for a while, and figuring it wouldn’t hurt to try, had worked up the courage to apply to a role for which I didn’t hit every “ideal qualification” checkbox. (Take that, tech gender gap!) And to my surprise and relief, I moved forward – all the way to San Francisco, to a spot on Twilio’s ...
Introducing Twilio Developer Evangelist Layla Porter
I had drifted through a broad variety of careers from Retail to Marketing, Professional Rider to Personal Trainer but never quite found the right fit for me. Yet the moment I decided to change career from Pilates teacher to software engineer I knew it was the right decision.
A little bit of context
My father passed away suddenly in 2013 and I was faced with the realisation that life is too short to traverse without purpose.
This caused my whole outlook on life to change, I became more daring and confident whilst becoming more analytical about my own situations.
At the time of my dad’s passing I’d been running a successful Pilates studio from a shed in a friend’s back garden. It could accommodate just four people in each class so with my new-found bravery I seized an opportunity to use my savings and open commercial premises ...
8 Ways Personal Information Is Like Uranium
Want to Be A More Privacy-Aware Developer for Data Privacy Day? Think of Personal Information like Uranium
Sunday, January 28th is Data Privacy Day. And, I know the best way for Twilio to celebrate the day would be with a post on best practices for handling nuclear reactor fuel. Kidding. In all seriousness, much of Data Privacy Day is focused on building awareness among consumers about how they can protect their privacy on the internet – a noble cause. But what about a little awareness-building for you, the developers – the doers that build that internet?
Now, I’m no nuclear physicist, but I am Twilio’s Associate General Counsel and head up our privacy program. So, let me plead my case that if you want to become a more privacy-aware developer (and who doesn’t?!), one way to get into the right frame of mind is to think of handling personal ...
Chaos Engineering at Twilio with Ratequeue HA
Twilio engineers are constantly working on improving our core services to meet or exceed 5 nines of availability. A system’s capacity for self-healing when a fault occurs is a key measure of achieving high availability. Recently, Twilio used Chaos Engineering to close the gap and eliminate the need for human intervention for common faults involving our core queueing-and-rate-limiting system, Ratequeue.
Twilio empowers customers to make 100’s of concurrent API requests. However, your messages may be unexpectedly rate-limited, such as carrier regulations (US long codes), contractual limitations (US short codes), or technological (e.g. capacity). As a safeguard, Twilio automatically queues outbound messages for delivery. Each Twilio phone number gets a separate queue and messages are dequeued at rate depending on the contract.
Ratequeue is an internally-developed distributed queueing system designed for simultaneously rate-limiting dequeue rates for many ephemeral queues. Each sender ID (e.g. phone number ...
Building TwilioQuest with Twilio Sync, Django, and Vue.js
TwilioQuest is our developer training curriculum disguised as a retro-style video game. While you learn valuable skills for your day job, you get to earn XP and wacky loot to equip on your 8-bit avatar.
Today we’ll pull back the curtain and show the code that the Developer Education team wrote to create TwilioQuest.
Meet Wagtail, a Python & Django Based CMS
TwilioQuest is full of content. A lot of content.
There are missions for nearly all of Twilio’s products, with each mission containing many different objectives. To manage all this content, we needed a content management system (CMS). Luckily, the Twilio documentation site is built on a Python & Django-based CMS called Wagtail, so we already had a tool we were familiar with and ready to build on.
We did have a few experienced Python & Django developers on the team, but others were completely new to ...
My SIGNAL London 2017 Schedule
In just under a week we will be hosting SIGNAL London for the second time with even more talks, hands-on learning, live demos and the first ever European $BASH.
Every single one of the talks at SIGNAL London has been carefully selected, here’s the full schedule. But if I were to choose, these are the talks that I’m personally most excited about:
[11:15] Sharpening my tools
We all know how important 2FA is to keep all your logins and data secure. With most 2FA being done via SMS messages, hackers a few months ago managed to use an exploit on the SS7 Network to hack a bank. In his session, B. Byrne will talk about this vulnerability and ways to improve an SMS integration to make it work best for 2FA.
[11:55] Serverless is all the rage
Back at SIGNAL SF 2017, we announced Functions that ...
Best Practices for Responding to Government Requests for Information
Twice a year, Twilio publishes a transparency report to inform our community of how many government requests for information we received, how we responded to the requests, and how we notified the affected users. You can find Twilio’s reports, including the one for the First Half of 2017, on our website and on Github.
When viewed across industries, transparency reports provide insight on important public policy considerations around civil rights, data privacy and public safety. A prime example of this is how companies, including Twilio, discuss the privacy and free speech concerns caused by National Security Letters.
In accordance with the USA Freedom Act of 2015, the US Department of Justice has recently notified some companies that the nondisclosure order on some National Security Letters they received had expired. As a result, some companies were able to confirm that they had in fact received National Security Letters over a ...
Yesterday, during SIGNAL’s Day 1 keynote, you heard about our philosophy on code here at Twilio. We believe code is — at its core — a creative endeavor. It’s the act of a human using tools to amplify their intent and potential.
Three years ago we rebooted Twiliocon to SIGNAL. We wanted to bring this new idea to life with all of you, the intrepid developers we serve. You build businesses. And change industries. You inspire movements. You save lives. You amplify the impact you can have on the world.
This morning we opened the show with the John Brothers Piano Company – a group of Computer Science majors turned jazz quartet. Tonight at $BASH, we’ve got some interactive art installations that we think you’re going to love.
We have the good fortune of a front-row seat to what you create.
What Happens When You Let Thousands of Developers ...
Teaching A Developer To Fish…Kind Of
You’re new to the whole coding thing. You land on an API’s website and click through to get started. You’ve got some code examples, but no idea where to put the code or how to make it do the thing you want it to.
You’ve essentially got a fishing pole, you want to grab some fish, but have no idea where the nearest fishing hole is. This is a problem that plagues the tech field. It’s a problem Kyle Woumn & Malika Nikhmonova are trying to solve.
In their SIGNAL session, these two software engineers will walk through the steps they’ve taken to get users to the proverbial fishing hole — shipping the app.
Malika and Kyle have focused on tailoring users experience around a use case, for example, appointment reminders. Having a fixed point on the development horizon helps users stay focused and reach ...
An API By Any Other Name
The Twilio you know could have been easily been a pig-themed API.
Jeff Lawson bought Twilio.com for $7 in 2007. But Twilio was of many options on a name-storming sheet that Jeff sent to co-founder John Wolthuis.
Let’s peek into the lives Twilio could’ve had. We’ll see where these domains are now.
- TPhoney.com – This is now the home of Taylor Pass Honey, a New Zealand based honey manufacturer.
- PHISM.com – Nearly 10 years later, this is still taken, but on the market for the right price.
- Teldigo.com – Send us the best pitch for what this website should be and we’ll give you 30% off a SIGNAL ticket.
- Teldash.com – Someone in Lelystad, Netherlands owns this domain. If you’re cruising through Lelystad, they apparently have a replica of the infamous 17th century ship, Batavia.
- Temphis.com – If you need some employee scheduling solutions ...