LinkedIn is building out a private cloud as a foundation for diversifying into a full-service social network for business.
"We see LinkedIn transitioning to be the platform of choice for every professional in the world," Yuval Bachar, principal engineer, architecture and strategy, tells Light Reading. LinkedIn is looking to go beyond its current mainstay business as an extended job search and address book site, to allow professionals to do research, take classes, and more. "We're looking at this as the focal point of every professional in the world, white collar or blue collar," Bachar says. These include workers at every stage of education, from high school to college to advanced degree.
LinkedIn calls its vision the "Economic Graph," a digital map of the global economy, including a profile of every one of the 3 billion members of the global workforce, representing their professional identities, to help them find opportunities. The Economic Graph also includes profiles for every company in the world, with personal connections to help potential workers get their foot in the door, as well as a digital presence for every higher education institution in the world that can help build professional skills.
But that's the future. For now, some 60% of LinkedIn's revenue today comes from Talent Solutions, which helps recruiters search for candidates, and most of that revenue comes from corporate clients.
"We will have to enable features that are much richer in content than we have today," Bachar says.
To achieve those goals, LinkedIn needs to build out its data center infrastructure, enhancing automation for improved efficiency. The company describes the new LinkedIn Platform as a Service private cloud infrastructure in a blog post scheduled to go up Wednesday 1:00 p.m. EDT.
"Over time we've built up great automation for a lot of low-level operations, tracking hosts we buy, updating software versions on individual hosts, and things like that," Steven Ihde, head of the LTS project and principal staff software engineer for LinkedIn, tells Light Reading. "What we're really trying to do here is take the automation to the next level, by having an API-driven system for developers and operations staff, automating a lot of things that are currently done manually with ticket-based tracking systems, such as selecting hosts to turn on new services, and expanding and contracting services in reaction to traffic and other demands."
The biggest shift is managing topology -- which services and jobs are running where in the data center -- automatically, a process previously managed manually by judgment call by the network operators. That process is now managed automatically by a system LinkedIn calls "Rain," using containerization to protect services from each other.
Next Page: 50% Savings