This past week I was on call for my team. This past week was also Thanksgiving, and since I work for a company that is in the business of selling things to people, it was more than a little hectic for me.

In other words, being on call for a critical service at Amazon + Black Friday = PAIN.

I\’ve been paged more times this week than any week I\’ve worked at Amazon so far, and I spent most of the week working on an urgent fix requested by another team, one which necessitated that I load test our software to make sure that the fix didn\’t affect performance adversely, and then spend hours on Saturday deploying the fix to our production boxes. On top of that I\’ve had to attend early morning conference calls for high-velocity sales events (some of which you may have heard of). So yeah, I\’m pretty worn out.

Still, while it does sound like I\’m whining, I\’m pretty happy that I was able to get through the week without any major problems on the site. The Amazon philosophy is to have all employees think like owners of the company, and given that we got through Black Friday without any major problems, as an owner, an employee and someone interested in customer experience I\’m pretty happy.

I would be happier if we could ensure that sort of thing without driving the on call engineer nuts, though…

On a somewhat related note, I did manage to score 4GB of Corsair DDR800 RAM for the awesome price of $50 plus a $30 mail-in-rebate, and a copy of the PC version of Fallout 3 for $30 (both off Amazon, of course). I haven\’t finished the first Fallout yet, but it\’s already pretty clear that the third game is a vastly different beast from the first (and I\’m not sure if it\’s in a good way, either).

3 thoughts on “I\’ve been a little busy”
  1. In times like this, I’m glad I’ll be working for the metallurgic industry in the future 😛

    Can’t imagine how you can tolerate these kind of… unexpected expected events.

    1. It’s part of the territory that comes with operating large e-Commerce websites that need to be up 24/7. Someone has to do it, and it’s a lot harder than most people would think.

      Still, the challenge is what I enjoy most about the job.

      1. Yeah, that’s why I wouldn’t be in such business.

        Having to deal with something where the offer-and-demand behavior changes so abruptly any time would be too stressful for me 😛

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