Escalating Scenarios: A Deep Dive Into Outage Pitfalls

John Allspaw (Etsy)
Operations and Culture
Location: Westminster
Presentation: external link
Average rating: ****.
(4.46, 13 ratings)

When things go wrong, our judgement is clouded at best, blinded at worst.

In order to successfully navigate a large-scale outage, being aware of potentials gaps in knowledge and context can help make for a better outcome. The Human Factors and Systems Safety community have been studying how people situate themselves, coordinate amongst a team, use tooling, make decisions, and keep their cool under sometimes very stressful and escalating scenarios. We can learn from this research in order to adopt a more mature stance when the s*#t hits the fan.

We’re going to look closely at how people behave under these circumstances using real-world examples and scan what we can learn from High Reliability Organizations(HROs) and fields such as aviation, military, and trauma-driven healthcare.

Photo of John Allspaw

John Allspaw

Etsy

John has worked in systems operations for over fourteen years in biotech, government and online media. He started out tuning parallel clusters running vehicle crash simulations for the U.S. government, and then moved on to the Internet in 1997. He built the backing infrastructures at Salon, InfoWorld, Friendster, and Flickr. He is now VP of Tech Operations at Etsy, and is the author of The Art of Capacity Planning published by O’Reilly.

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