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Facebook’s famous “hacker way” work ethic involves shipping out new features and new code at a fast and furious pace. Well, the pace just doubled.
Now, Facebook will update its code twice daily as part of a renewed commitment to “ship early, ship often.”
“When I wrote about Facebook’s release process earlier this year, I stressed how fast we build things here and described how we push new code to facebook.com every day,” wrote Facebook release engineer Chuck Rossi on the company blog.
The developer said that the pushes would be “driven by a recently-hired release engineer in our New York office in addition to our standing daily push managed by our California release engineering team.”
The social network’s New York office was officially announced at the tail end of last year, and having that team own the code pushes is all part of Facebook’s larger plan.
“The New York-based push will give much more power to our engineers who aren’t based on the west coast of the U.S. and will ensure they’re able to move and ship as quickly as any other engineer in the company,” said Rossi. “It will also give California engineers two chances to get code shipped and features launched each day.”
Every day, between 600 and 700 developers push code live to Facebook.com. In fact, part of the company’s culture is having developers work on projects that get shipped out to Facebook’s hundreds of millions of users in their very first days on the job as part of a “boot camp” every new employee goes through.
But more code pushes means more risk. When Facebook had some downtime a few weeks ago, some speculated that the network had been hacked. In reality, one of these routine code pushes had broken the build. D’oh!
The new code push schedule is also about keeping Facebook competitive. As Rossi concluded, “I think it crushes what anyone else of our size and impact is doing.”