I've definitely been a fan
of Amazon's web services offerings. By providing cheap, scalable and robust processing power and storage (and, as of recently, a simple database), Amazon has started to singlehandedly change the economics of doing certain things online. It's become quite common for startups to build their platform entirely on Amazon's systems -- and given the stability of Amazon itself, it always seemed like a good idea, especially following some high profile outages
at popular data centers. However, this morning, that "robust" part got called into question as Amazon's S3 service had a major outage
, taking down a variety of startups and services (and, apparently, plenty of images on various websites). While some are suggesting this shows the weakness of "cloud computing," it's not necessarily all that different than those earlier outages where you had a data center go down. Given this and the recent Blackberry outage
, we're again learning that robustness isn't just nice to have -- for many services it's really a need
to have, and we're not quite there yet.