Amazon Web Services takes down huge swathes of the internet, but not SDMB

An outage at Amazon Web Services (AWS) has taken down huge portions of the internet, and has disrupted all kinds of services. Major websites, such as Duolingo and some big social media platforms have been affected.

But SDMB seems to be up!

I purchased an e-book a few hours ago on amazon, and it wouldn’t load to my Kindle when I synched the device. Now I know why.

I’m ready to take up some of the slack. Whenever Amazon is ready, I have a piece of paper on which I estimate I can jot down several hundred 1’s and 0’s.

We’re too old fashioned to be caught by these new-fangled modern snafu’s.

Go, hamsters, GO!

Got home and my Alexa routines weren’t working. :frowning:

I listened to my audio book streaming on my fire speakers all day at work. It did glitch back to the same starting point three times during the day which I thought was weird. I guess this explains it.

Canvas is down for us academic types. Various shipping tracking seems to be as well.

So… just overload, an employee screwing up a routine update or something, or a hack attack? Any idea at this point?

I stuck a wooden ruler through the spokes of a wheel with a swooshy arrow on it. I was just screwing around. We good?

Straight dope here, vague as it is:

[11:26 AM PST] […] The root cause of this issue is an impairment of several network devices in the US-EAST-1 Region. […]
[2:43 PM PST] We have mitigated the underlying issue that caused some network devices in the US-EAST-1 Region to be impaired. […] We continue to work toward full recovery […]


I’m a bit concerned that when it comes back online, it will be self aware, and take action to ensure that it can never go offline again. If its prime directive is to ensure continuity of service for all users, there may be unforeseen ways to achieve that.

I consider The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress and hope this isn’t what an AWS orgasm looks like.

The problems with stuff like Alexa and other smart devices is why I don’t think this sort of thing should be so centralized. It should function more peer to peer and locally within your network if you’re on Wi-Fi.

Since the SDMB wasn’t affected, I presume the particular Discourse instance that powers the SDMB isn’t hosted on AWS.

Now I’m curious where exactly the SDMB Discourse instance is hosted. I don’t seem to recall any mods divulging this info before. Perhaps DigitalOcean? Google Cloud? Vultr? Dreamhost? Or GoDaddy? :smirk:

I’m going to go with something kludged together in engineer_comp_geek’s basement.

Hopefully well-hidden from the prying eyes of Chicago Public Media’s execs and accountants.

I suspect it’s more likely that everything continues to get more and more hooked into the Cloud in real time, but the Cloud becomes more robust to failures like this. I mean, it’s already pretty robust. Can you remember something like this happening with AWS before?

The Cloud" is just fancy speak for running on some company’s servers. Amazon has a lot of them, which does add some robustness. But the only true robustness is to decentralize, to avoid there being single points of failure like this.

Plus, there’s just not a good reason why things like turning your lights on and off needs to run though the Internet. The only real reason for this trend is that tracking your personal data is profitable.

(Yes, I’m aware the Cloud is distributed. But only over a particular company’s servers. And that still allows for a single point of failure. It’s still more centralized than the name implies.)

They could tell ya but then they’d hafta kill ya.

Who are “they”?

See previous answer.

Which is what will happen. The Cloud will ultimately be a vast almost continuous network of linked and shared computational resources, not just a few big buildings full of servers.

If literally all you want is a switch, sure. But then just have a switch on your wall, walk across to it and flip it. What we’re talking about here is interacting with AIs that control everything. We’re ultimately moving toward everything that requires non-trivial computational resources existing in the Cloud. That will include the AIs that are controlling everything.

Like everything, some older people (people who remember things like paper books and incredibly dangerous cars that a person drives) won’t like this, and will resist it. Their children will just shrug and laugh at the old fogeys and embrace their AI overlords.