This blog will look at the concept “Lightweight Models & Cost-Effective Scalability“, the final pattern of eight patterns as defined by Tim O’Reilly. In the World Wide Web business/organizations are now looking to adopt a scalable, cost-effective strategy encompassing business models, development models, and technology to deliver products to market faster and cheaper without sacrificing future growth.
Once the idea of web services became au courant, large companies jumped into the fray with a complex web services stack designed to create highly reliable programming environments for distributed applications. –Tim O’Reilly
Basically, what O’Reilly is saying is that what was once normal to start out big has now turned to starting small with a big picture at the end of the model. Once was the idea of large complex web services, that has now been turned on its head. Using a business model and starting and starting out small with a small budget but gradually increase costs as revenue has been increased. Benefits that this brings include:
- Cost effectiveness
- Doing more with less
- Easy start-up
- Fail fast
- Scale easy
Right, so a great application that demonstrates lightweight modelling and cost effective scalabilty is the popular micro-blogging platform “Twitter“. Twitter is an online social networking service and microblogging service that enables its users to send and read text-based messages of up to 140 characters, known as “tweets”. Twitter has become a go to for business and is a great application to use whilst starting up, it is free, easy to start up and has a huge amount of users which will bring responsiveness. From starting with twitter business can then more on to a much larger/complex web services as revenue increases.
Here are best practices that Twitter has adopted in relation to practices that Professor Jason Watson’s from QUT pointed out during “Lightweight Models & Cost-Effective Scalability” lecture.
(1) Scale with demand
When twitter started, it had 400,000 tweets posted per quarter in 2007, this grew to 100 million tweets posted per quarter in 2008. In February 2010, Twitter users were sending 50 million tweets per day. (More statistics here) We can see that twitter started out small in terms of people using and tweeting, however as usage increased they had to increase their scale base on the increase demand of users.
(2) Syndicate business models
Using twitter can also be a great way to increase your business model/strategies. Social media are not generally link to each other. Users could use say their Facebook/google+ accounts and promote their twitter account. This allows enterprises to build all or part of their business on top of various social media components.
(3) Outsource whenever practical and possible
Twitter Inc. is based in San Francisco, with additional servers and offices in New York City, Boston, and San Antonio.
(4) Provide outsource infrastructure, function, and expertise
Generally big companies such as twitter have no need to outsource their infrastructure, function and expertise. These would be done in their own offices.
(5) Market virally