Skip to main content

Paralysis by Analysis

A lot of times we run into Paralysis by Analysis. We use Lucene for indexing cloud storage data and its a very old home grown system, we are soon going to retire it and replace it with Elastic Search.  Recently we ran into Paralysis by Analysis situation where we were waiting for Elastic Search project to go live to implement Folder Search and we were debating over it for months while customers were cribbing for it. The move to Elastic Search requires migration of billions of files and PetaBytes of contents to be migrated which can take months. Finally I got approval that instead of waiting for ElasticSearch lets do a simple canonical prefix based search out of database directly. It took 2 days to implement server api and 1 week for UI,plumbing work and QA.  As we use Mysql Sharding, the solution scaled fine, all I needed to ensure was proper indexes were there. Two days I got email from Support that customers are in love with Folder search :).

Offcourse this is not perfect solution because we cant do fuzzy searches, word tokenization and all the power that comes with Elastic Search but may be 90% of the customers dont even need them and eventually after Elastic Search we would reach there.  This is why hackathons are more important because people would come up with quick hacks that weren’t earlier done due to Paralysis by Analysis but improve the product.  Not each hack would make it to production or some would make it but not scale or would get low usage from customers, so they need to be culled.  But sometimes all you need is "to try". Some hacks If I have to participate in a hackathon would be :

  1. Activity streams on Folders
  2. Folder comments
  3. Workflows on top of documents
  4. User and Groups Audit report
  5. Better custom SMTP integration
  6. Status monitor like
  7. Show creation time and posted time of file on UI
  8. Server based trigger for uploading sync client logs (this is one of my pet peeve).
  9. Parallel execution of unit tests
  10. and many more


Popular posts from this blog

RabbitMQ java clients for beginners

Here is a sample of a consumer and producer example for RabbitMQ. The steps are
Download ErlangDownload Rabbit MQ ServerDownload Rabbit MQ Java client jarsCompile and run the below two class and you are done.
This sample create a Durable Exchange, Queue and a Message. You will have to start the consumer first before you start the for the first time.

For more information on AMQP, Exchanges, Queues, read this excellent tutorial
import com.rabbitmq.client.Connection; import com.rabbitmq.client.Channel; import com.rabbitmq.client.*; public class RabbitMQProducer { public static void main(String []args) throws Exception { ConnectionFactory factory = new ConnectionFactory(); factory.setUsername("guest"); factory.setPassword("guest"); factory.setVirtualHost("/"); factory.setHost(""); factory.setPort(5672); Conne…

Logging to Graphite monitoring tool from java

We use Graphite as a tool for monitoring some stats and watch trends. A requirement is to monitor impact of new releases as build is deployed to app nodes to see if things like
1) Has the memcache usage increased.
2) Has the no of Java exceptions went up.
3) Is the app using more tomcat threads.
Here is a screenshot

We changed the installer to log a deploy event when a new build is deployed. I wrote a simple spring bean to log graphite events using java. Logging to graphite is easy, all you need to do is open a socket and send lines of events.
import org.slf4j.Logger;import org.slf4j.LoggerFactory; import; import; import; import java.util.HashMap; import java.util.Map; public class GraphiteLogger { private static final Logger logger = LoggerFactory.getLogger(GraphiteLogger.class); private String graphiteHost; private int graphitePort; public String getGraphiteHost() { return graphiteHost; } public void setGraphite…

Jersey posting multipart data

This took me sometime to figure out mostly it was because I was only including jersey-multipart-1.6.jar but I was not including mimepull-1.3.jar.

So the intent is to upload a file using REST api and we need pass meta attributes in addition to uploading the file. Also the intent is to stream the file instead of first storing it on the local disk. Here is some sample code.
@Path("/upload-service") public class UploadService { @Context protected HttpServletResponse response; @Context protected HttpServletRequest request; @POST @Consumes(MediaType.MULTIPART_FORM_DATA) @Produces(MediaType.APPLICATION_JSON) public String uploadFile(@PathParam("fileName") final String fileName, @FormDataParam("workgroupId") String workgroupId, @FormDataParam("userId") final int userId, @FormDataParam("content") final InputStream content) throws JSONException { //.......Upload the file to S3 or netapp or any storage service } }
Now to tes…