GetYourGuide's Tech Radar
In today’s post, we hear from Pascal von Rickenbach, Principal Engineer, on GetYourGuide’s tech stack.
At the beginning of this year, our tech organization grew beyond 60 people. We work with small cross-functional teams on distinct areas of our product and noticed that some of these teams had similar technical solutions to create value for our customers. As our organization continues to grow aggressively, making sure that learnings and knowledge about our technology stacks are shared effectively across all teams is a vital topic for us.
Based on the ideas of ThoughtWorks, we decided to create the GetYourGuide Tech Radar. The Tech Radar is a great tool for bringing visibility to what technologies are currently in use at GetYourGuide, it facilitates our strategic discussions around how to keep our “technology zoo” under control and balances technology risks and technical innovation.
Aside from collecting a global view of our technology landscape, we also aimed to improve technology discoverability and knowledge sharing. The Tech Radar does this by providing a way to enrich the high-level overview with more detailed information around technology usage within teams. This makes it very easy for engineers to drill down and reach out to the teams that have hands-on experience with a certain technology and share information.
What is a Tech Radar?
Our version of the Tech Radar depicts the current GetYourGuide technology landscape as a whole. In contrast to the ThoughtWorks Technology Radar, it highlights interesting changes in software development every 6 months and is thus much more volatile.
The GetYourGuide Tech Radar, similar to the ThoughtWorks one, is organized in four quadrants – Framework & Tools, Languages, Platform & Infrastructure, and Data Management. The quadrants are complemented with four rings describing how we assess a certain technology with regards to its adoption lifecycle within GetYourGuide. We use the following semantics for the rings (which are inspired by the Zalando Tech Radar definitions):
Adopt: Technologies that we have high confidence in to serve our purpose. Technologies that are low risk, used at GetYourGuide in our production environment and recommended to be widely used.
Trial: Technologies that have been previously successful in projects. With trial technologies, we have first usage experience that confirms benefits. Trial technologies are slightly more risky as our knowledge and experience working with them is still limited.
Assess: Technologies that are promising and have potential but are unproven in our organization. Technologies in this ring are considered worth investing some research in and prototyping efforts to see if they have any impact.
Hold: Technologies that are not favored to be used for new projects. Technologies that we think are not (yet) worth (further) investing in. Hold technologies should not be used for new projects, but can usually be continued for existing projects.
The GetYourGuide Tech Radar is maintained by the Technology Excellence Group, a group of senior technical leaders that drive the company’s technical vision and act as a guide and advisor for the different engineering teams. This group provides feedback on technology decisions within teams and updates our Tech Radar together with all engineering teams once a quarter. The Radar is still in its early stages and we frequently discover tools and technologies that are missing from it. Work in progress!
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