We (@ashbhoopathy, @railsjedi, and @richlengsavath) won both the Public Favorite and 3rd place in this year’s Rails Rumble. We are flattered and honored by the outpouring of community support for our simple idea.
When we started building DeployButton, we wanted to scratch our own itch and solve for our own needs. This summer, our team at Lizi decided that we needed a less expensive web host for our site(s). Like many of you, we’re a fast moving consumer web team that likes to iterate and put lots of new things out to “Build“, “Measure“, and “Learn” to validate that we’re making something people want™.
Jacques, aka “@railsjedi“, created a really sweet system to power our continuous deployment, using Github, Linode, and Opscode Chef. I’ll save the more technical post for later, but for the layperson, this essentially means that as soon as someone has committed working code into a master branch of a source code repository, it automatically gets deployed to the server, and the whole team is notified.
Our team relies on a few tools for group communication, one of them being Hipchat. Hipchat allows for deploy hooks that can notify us when different things happen, like code being checked in, and deploys starting/completing. This is a great way for the team to 1) stay abreast of what’s going on with the code base, and 2) know which “application state” users are looking at in the event that an error occurs (Errors also have http hooks that notify us in the chat).
Little did we know, but the night that we finished and submitted our final version to the RailsRumble repo, we got to the front page of HackerNews. Soon thereafter, we had over 15K visitors come to our site, and over 6K who’ve used the product already! We knew then that our product had struck a nerve and might fulfill a need for a wide assortment of people: independent WordPress builders, small-midsized web consulting shops, to weekend hobbyist Rails devs.
Over the next few months, we’ll be improving DeployButton to have many creature comforts that we’d want to see in a product like this, since we need it anyway.
Follow along in our progress here, @DeployButton, and tweet to tell us how you use continuous deployment at your startups and enterprises.
Oh, and if this is still “cool” to do, Like us on Facebook and we’ll let you know first about beta releases to our product
Respond to me on Twitter: @AshBhoopathy or follow the discussion on HN.