Video AMA: The Art and Science of Resiliency with John Allspaw


Our next guest for the PagerDuty Community AMA is John Allspaw !

John Allspaw has worked in software systems engineering and operations for over twenty years in many different environments: biotech, government, online media, social networking, and e-commerce. John’s publications include the books The Art of Capacity Planning and Web Operations as well as the foreword to “The DevOps Handbook.”

His 2009 Velocity talk with Paul Hammond, 10+ Deploys Per Day: Dev and Ops Cooperation, helped start the DevOps movement. John served as SVP of Infrastructure and Operations and then CTO at Etsy, and holds an MSc in Human Factors and Systems Safety from Lund University.

How This Works

Post your questions to John in this thread - we’ll collect them up and John will answer them in a live-stream video on February 11 at 12 Noon PST. Questions should be posted no later than Friday, February 8. You can also tweet your questions for John to us via our twitter handle, @pagerduty. Please use the hashtag #pagerdutyama.

In addition to your questions about John’s experiences, we encourage you to interpret “AMA” as “Ask My Advice”!


Have you seen situations where planning for disruptions gets in the way of normal operations?

In your experience, what is the best way to stop a single failure from cascading into disaster? I know your degree covers that to some level, but I’m interested to see how that has applied in your career.

What’s it like to take a degree in another country? Did you need to learn Swedish to do it?

Is there a way to assign a financial cost to motivate change in an IT team? IE: constant alerts that wake the same engineers without long term fix.

John, I know this is probably gonna get played for laughs, but why do people still use Nagios?


The video link to the AMA is