In an ongoing commitment to quality and service we have recently decided to change the way we deliver updates to the ASAP platform. And after several months of planning and preparation we are excited to announce that today will be the last of our traditional “weekly updates”, in favor of a new process designed to improve quality and reduce the potential for deployment-related problems. This new process is known as Continuous Delivery and is used by many of the biggest and most successful cloud service providers including Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Netflix, Airbnb, Atlassian, and even one you may not think of as a software company: Tesla!
Historically we have developed and released in short cycles known as “sprints”, most recently deploying these in regular weekly intervals. While this has been an effective and valuable strategy for us as compared to longer and larger release cycles, there have been a number of challenges that got us to begin looking at alternatives. Most notable was the problem that bundling caused us to compromise on speed or quality by requiring us to look at the release as a whole instead of being able to make decisions based on the properties of any individual item.
With Continuous Delivery updates will be deployed to the system independently as soon as they are completed and have passed acceptance tests defined by our QA team. This new process has several advantages over our previous deployment strategy, with the end result being:
- You will see improvement in quality
- You will get fixes and new features quicker
The reason that CD gives us the ability to improve on both quality and speed of delivery is that the choice now becomes more granular. Every fix and every improvement is now self-contained and we are able to make decisions about every item independent of the whole. So for a high-impact fix with low risk we can choose speed, while a lower-priority update with lots of interdependencies can be slowed down to include additional rounds of testing and review. And neither will have any impact on the other.
There are also a number of benefits of implementing the process on our side that will ultimately result in a better experience for you the user. These include changes to our planning, code reviews, testing, and more, all of which will have a positive impact across the ASAP ecosystem.
Finally, in tandem with the new deploy process comes a new way of communicating our updates. As of today you will notice a new menu icon in the application denoting that there are new changes in ASAP. Clicking the icon will open a modal window containing a list of the most recent updates.
We’re really excited about these new processes and look forward to moving forward together under a new era of ASAP product development!
- The ASAP Product Team