16 Apr 2013
I am so incredibly tempted to call Lori MacVittie the First Lady of Web Performance, if only because I know how hard it would make her laugh. But seriously, in the intro to my latest podcast, I said that Lori’s forgotten more about the history of our industry than most of us ever knew, and I meant it.
Performance has become a hot topic in the past three or four years, but it’s been around since the inception of the web, and it’s meant different things at different times. Up till six or seven years ago, the focus was on just keeping sites up under load stress, no matter whether or not this meant losing a few seconds. Fast forward to today, and things have done a complete turnabout. As most of us know, optimal performance is not only about supporting millions of users, but also ensuring that each of these users is blazing fast. As Lori points out, “it’s an incredibly, incredibly stressful thing to try and do, because you’ve got even more moving parts now than you did then.”
Lori and I covered a lot of ground in our chat, from the early acceleration pioneers who helped birth modern-day FEO, to ADCs and SDNs and a bunch of other cool acronyms. Lori also made a heroic attempt to convince me that the cloud is interesting. You’ll have to listen to the podcast to see if she succeeded.
(Note: I want to apologize in advance for the audio quality in this podcast. We’re working on making it better.)