Scaling from a prototype to a viral website in 24 hours.

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The site had a simple premise: can you search for a movie or TV show and see if the production was affected by an alleged sexual harasser.

Within the first week, TheRottenAppl.es received over 2.7 million searches.

The Build

Simplicity was key: A simple search box hooked to TheMovieDB API. The data set would then be augmented with a curated list of articles from reputable news sources.

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The simple build

Limiting Factor #1: API calls

Within a few hours of launch, traffic spiked to roughly 800 concurrent requests. We were hitting our 4 req/second limit.

Solution #1: Cache the API calls.

if (file_exists($cache_file) ){
if (time() — filemtime($cache_file) > $cache_duration){
//cache exists but is too old. replace. …


Westworld is a MMRLRPG (massively multiplayer real-life role-playing game) set in the not too distant past of the American Old West.

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An OP’d max-level player bullying an NPC, Photo: HBO

While the “real life” part of the MMRLRPG concept is new, the basics remain the same across MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role-playing games) like World of Warcraft and RPGs (role-playing games) like the Elder Scrolls and Final Fantasy series.

To those that haven’t been to Delos Inc’s Westworld, here’s a first-person review of the full experience.

Entering Westworld

I boarded a monorail and headed to the main terminal. The facility was luxurious but felt sanitized and lifeless, possibly alluding to what’s to come.

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Delos Inc Terminal, Photo: HBO

Another character greeted me. I couldn’t quite tell if she was real or not. …


How does an app with no social features become the most shareable/social phenomenon of this generation?

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Everyone’s looking for the next big idea — the next big thing that creates buzz, becomes viral, and is shared by word of mouth.

As advertisers, we look for influencers, come up with elaborate and strategic media plans, create tools for shareability, and pen campaigns with thought out hashtags. We’ll even write up copy for Facebook posts, tweets, and attempt to encourage consumers on what/how/when to share.

And yet, Pokémon Go did none of this.

The app is a skeleton. You can’t see other trainers (aside from the ones that own Gyms), you don’t have a friends feed/list, and there’s no native way to share your screenshots, captured Pokémon, gyms/stops you’ve been to. …

About

Justice Erolin

Head of Technology and Engineering

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