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Cloud Cafe Podcast #8 Animoto

By John | July 15, 2008

In this podcast I was able to speak to another customer of the “cloud”. Brad Jefferson the CEO of Animoto shares some of his experiences and thoughts about the cloud. Animoto uses Rightscale as their cloud infrastructure partner. Brad discusses their infamous week where Animoto went from 25k users to 700k users in 5 days and they had to scale from 50 to 5k servers. About 10 minutes before the call I went out and created my first Animoto short video.

Listen to this Podcast Here

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Here is my
No Country for Old IT Guys Animoto Video:

I wanted to add a special thanks to Florence Neal for the artwork and Mike Colletti for the music. If you find any of their works interesting, please feel free to link their sites and contact them directly.

Link here for other Cloud Cafe podcasts

Topics: cloud computing, cloudcafe, cloudcafeAnimoto | 6 Comments »

6 Responses to “Cloud Cafe Podcast #8 Animoto”

  1. William Vambenepe Says:
    July 18th, 2008 at 2:49 am

    Hi John,

    Great guest. But to be frank I don’t think you were as good as usual with your questions. A few things I would have liked to hear more from Brad about:
    - they took 3 months to rewrite their app for Amazon. What did this entail? What advice to people writing a “traditional” app today who think they may want to move it to Amazon at some point down the line?
    - there wasn’t much discussion of their use of Rightscale and the value they get from it. And the limitations, if any, they’ve found.
    - Brad said that in order to scale to 5k instances, they had to get some kind of special help from Amazon (with the Rightscale people part of the discussion). Rather than simply using the providioning interface to get more instances. Why the need for person to person interactions?
    Maybe you can have a follow-up podcast with him at some point?
    BTW, I could hear the glee in your voice when he explained how Amazon let them short-circuit the VCs… :-)
    Nice sample video BTW, but I was expecting something using the “no country for old IT guy” suitcase pictures.

  2. John Says:
    July 18th, 2008 at 4:03 am

    I know I must be doing something right when my podcasts start getting critics. :)

    I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you taking the time to give me your input on this podcast. You are correct for some reason I was a little dry on this interview and I probably didn’t prepare enough. Those are some good questions. Here are a few points.

    1) I tried to lead the Rightscale value-add but it didn’t seem like I was getting any juice from Brad on that question. I probably should have drove it a little deeper. However, I think one of Brad’s points was that all those meetings on the 5k week were really just to make sure everyone knew the storm was coming.

    2) You know me well when it comes to VCs. However, I think it was an angle of the cloud I had not thought of. It makes it much easier for startups to bootstrap.

    Hopefully you have seen the next post.
    No Country for Old IT Guys – Animoto Style

    I thought Animoto was so cool I went out and signed up for a year ($30).


  3. William Vambenepe’s blog » Blog Archive » Animoto is no infrastructure flexibility benchmark Says:
    July 22nd, 2008 at 12:54 am

    [...] have nothing against Animoto. From what I know about them (mostly from John’s podcast with Brad Jefferson) they built their system, using EC2, in a very smart [...]

  4. Thorsten - CTO RightScale Says:
    July 22nd, 2008 at 8:34 pm

    John, on the “what value did they get from working with RightScale” I’d just want to point out that Animoto had been operating without any dedicated sysadmin. Stevie, the CTO, basically ran the ops himself (now he finally has help). The Animoto deployments include many servers that come and go, and that’s where the RightScale config mgmnt comes in, plus all the queuing and auto-scaling stuff. Stevie is very smart and he could have built all this himself, but he really prefers to focus on his app, not on making servers come and go away again.

  5. Top 10 Reasons for NOT Using a Cloud | IT Management and Cloud Blog Says:
    September 11th, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    [...] keeps a persistent sustainability this could equate to a very high cost on a cloud. In a recent CloudCafe podcast Brad Jefferson the CEO of Animoto suggested at some point he might actually flip the cloud. [...]

  6. Don’t get caught without an exit strategy « BREAKING IT NEWS FOR BUSINESS Says:
    March 4th, 2009 at 5:16 am

    [...] is caused by misconceptions, says John Willis, a systems management consultant and author of an IT management and cloud blog. When people talk about lock-in, they often don’t distinguish among the several cloud types [...]