December 2016


November 2016

October 2016 Updates + Webinar

Chas Ballew on November 2, 2016

The Aptible Update Webinar Series is a new quarterly presentation that covers recent features and changes to the Enclave deployment platform and Gridiron security management products.

We hosted the first Update Webinar on October 25. In it, we covered:

  • Deploying from Private Docker Registries: How to configure a private container deployment pipeline
  • Advanced Memory Management: How to plan for and easily manage container memory issues
  • New ALB Endpoints: More resilient zero-downtime deployments
  • HTTP Health Checks: Smart, safe app container routing
  • Platform Events: How to get more from the Enclave API and your logging
  • Container Metrics: Live telemetry and dashboards for monitoring
  • Working with Database Backups: On-demand backups and restoration
  • Two-factor Authentication: Securing your Aptible accounts

The next Aptible Update Webinar will be on January 25, 2017, at 11am PST/2pm EST.

Register Now

Webinars are recorded and made available for viewing if you cannot attend the live session.

October 2016


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No Flash, No Problem

Gib Reimschüssel on October 28, 2015

We addressed a small UX issue in our dashboard application this week. A blog-post-worthy UX issue? Not really. Transparency in the process of how we address issues however, can greatly benefit our customers and their experience with our products.

Aptible is an application deployment platform built to automate HIPAA compliance for web and mobile technology. We have a web-based dashboard application to aid customers in managing their organization, access controls, and ops. It is built with EmberJS, an open source JavaScript application framework.

Contributing to the EmberJS community motivated our decision to open source the dashboard. Often available applications are small and optimized for evaluating the framework quickly. Sharing our production application builds on the many smaller examples and helps answer bigger questions around code organization, utilizing components, and test coverage.

We use a copy-to-clipboard action throughout the app for long strings that a user would likely need to paste in a terminal (database connection strings, git commit references, links, etc.).

A user reported some confusion via one of our support channels when the click-to-copy link reloaded their browser. A github issue was created and diagnosed the root of the problem. In browsers without Flash, the component was not set up and a link with a common placeholder destination, triggered the reload.

<a href="#">Copy</a>

Because the dashboard is open source, anyone with a free github account can create, comment, and follow issues. A new open source tool, clipboard.js, was noted as a possible solution. It does not use Flash and offers a nice fall-back for unsupported browsers to get targeted text on the clipboard. Note, the tool’s creator, zenorocha chimed in with a +1 and a wink. Feel the open source github love!

The click-to-copy component used in the dashboard is part of our shared library, ember-cli-aptible-shared, also open source. After making changes to the component, we updated the dashboard, and problem solved!

Why is this awesome?

  • Code change discussions are out in the open, tagged and timestamped.
  • Customers can submit or comment on issues directly.
  • The community can learn from and build on our open applications’ structure.
  • Recruiting. Like what you see?

Check out all of Aptible’s open source repositories or pick from the following highlights: Aptible’s public website.
dashboard Aptible’s customer dashboard (aka Diesel). It allows users to manage organizations, access controls, and ops.
aptible-cli Command-line interface for Aptible services.
opsworks-cli An alternative CLI for Amazon OpsWorks, focused on managing a large number of similarly provisioned stacks.
support Aptible’s support documentation.
docker-nodejs* Sample Docker files to get various versions of NodeJS running on Docker.
docker-cron-example* Example implementation of cron jobs on Docker/Aptible.

* To see the latest Dockerfile examples and Docker related repositories, view all of Aptible’s repositories and search for Docker.

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The Most Popular Databases in Digital Health

Sam Yount on October 27, 2015

This is the second in a series of blog posts exploring the state of the digital health landscape from a technical perspective. Our first post on popular languages has already proven to be one of our most read blog posts. If there are other analysis you would like to see on the state of digital health, please get in touch

One of the things we have noticed in working with a variety of digital health companies is that there is much more willingness to explore database technologies when architechting a new application. While developing in a new language typically takes a serious investment and will greatly slow initial progress, a different database variant may present lots of benefits with a minimal learning curve. As such, I expect we’ll see some interesting trends emerge as we repeat this survey over the coming months and years.

For this survey, we examined the database layer for applications deployed on Aptible. The pupulation of databases is limited by what Aptible (and AWS) support. That said, we are very quick to add support for any database requested by users.

As this is the first time we have collected this data, we can’t make any definitive claims about trends. However, DB-Engine is a great source for trends in database popularity. Their methodology, however is much squishier than our directly measured metrics.

DB-Engine October 2015 Ranking
3Microsoft SQL
7Microsoft Access

The most interesting difference in these lists is with Redis. The Aptible data is based on web and mobile applications while the DB-Engine list is based on a much broader variety of factors. So Redis may make more sense for the types of applications currently “hot” in the health tech world. It’ll be interesting to see how the list changes and whether the Aptible list is a leading indicator of rapidly growing Redis popularity.

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