Embrace Chaos Engineering

Confused engineer looking at laptop

Chaos Engineering sounds like what a supervillain would major in to gain the knowledge needed for world domination. In actuality, Chaos Engineering represents a relatively new, promising angle in the field of software testing and development.

Chaos Engineering aims to improve the reliance of a software by simulating real world stressful conditions. Invented by Netflix in 2011 during their own migration to cloud software, this type of testing offers particular promise thanks to the widespread adaptation of cloud software by other companies.

Cloud software means that more systems are connected than ever before. An outage of Amazon Web Services, a provider of cloud computing platforms, caused major websites such as Netflix and Disney + to become suddenly unavailable. Even other Internet-connected devices like smart cat litter boxes and Ring doorbells, all suddenly went offline at once.

This sort of mass crash can’t become the norm. Chaos Engineering aims to improve the tempo and stability of developed software. Tempo, a core component of agile programming methodology, meaning the speed of software deployment and fulfilling customer requests.

These improvements are accomplished by simulating real world potential issues. Problems such as seeing if the system still functions at a high CPU load, turning off a virtual machine, or other potential points of failure. By seeing how the system reacts, the developer can adjust the programming accordingly to prevent future crashes and downtime.

Chaos Engineering is seeing a surge of popularity spreading beyond its Silicon Valley origin. This year, Alan Morrison, a QA Manager at Kount, gave a presentation for the Idaho Technology Council on how the company uses Chaos Engineering in their programming. Nationwide, a British financial institution, employed Chaos Engineering to test their own cloud migration.

The future of tech is in cloud software. Chaos Engineering ensures the journey to the clouds is a smooth one.