Thursday, April 10, 2008

Google App Engine - Niall Kennedy's summary

Great summary about the Google App engine, by Niall Kennedy. He even provides some insights about the people behind it, and according to his first hand knowledge, this is just the beginning of what Google is rolling out:
I met with the App Engine's team leads on Monday morning for an in-depth overview of the product, its features, and its limitations. Google has been working on the Google App Engine since at least March 2006 and has only just begun revealing some of its features.


Bär said...

Hello Roberto,

first thanks for your interesting posts. Your blog is far less cranky than the other attempts to mate the worlds of web development and Erlang. (I see weirdness as the dark side of inovation, a force which is strong in the web jedi :-), and I exclude the excellent Yaws)

When I read the article on Google's App Engine here I thought "heck, why isn't there an Erlang engine flavour?". It makes sense as one of the next steps of evolution for internet/web hosting. Give the crowds standardized application environments, make it hard for them not to scale, remove their burden of buying more server boxes and maintaining its operation as much as possible.

From a technical point of view Erlang/OTP would be good starting point. It might be sufficient just to make the implementation (e.g. of the cluster/distribution mechanism, the mnesia implementation) more scalable, fault tolerant and manageable than it is (which is roughly for smaller clusters n << 100 IMHO).

Your Bear

Roberto Saccon said...


I am afraid that there won't be any Goggle App Engine flavor in Erlang nor in any other VM based language anytime soon, because it seems to me that Google is doing the scaling and resource usage management on a very low OS level. AFAIK Gmail is in Java at serverside, but it is just one app and it is theirs.

Ulf Wiger's ErlHive project is an interesting approach to provide a scalable environment for web applications, it lets independent apps use the same VM in a safe way. Or anything implementing a different Erlang Language flavor in Core Erlang could help to build a scalable Erlang Web App cluster, but as you mentioned just a very small cluster compared to Google's GAE.