Charles Engelke's Blog

July 11, 2003

OSCON Day 4: Session – Amazon Web Services, Past, Present and Future

Filed under: Ozette Brown — Charles Engelke @ 2:06 am

Amazon extensively uses webservices.

Amazon customer sets:

  • buyers – 31 million folks that bought stuff last year
  • sellers – merchants who sell on amazon’s platform
  • web site owners (associates)
  • developers

    They spent $300 mil in distribution centers and they have 10 world wide distribution centers.

    Technology Investment: $900mil


  • 1-click
  • search
  • reviews
  • wish list
  • personalization
  • similarities
  • order pipeline
  • catalog
  • payments
  • associates shopping cart

    Marketing: $700mil to build the Amazon brand

    Road to web services:

  • partners needed better access to data
  • some obtained data feeds (text or xml)
  • others scraped the site to obtain:
    – descriptions
    – images
    – prices
    -availability – how quicly can I get the product after I order it from Amazon

  • this was expensive for us anmd difficult and fragile

    Advent of Web Services

  • in early 2002, Tim O-Reilly asked Jeff B. to provide sales data in an easily consumable form such as xml
  • amazon webservices was born (stealth oproject)

    Amazon Web Services (aka, AWS)
    March 2002 AWS beta
    – SOAP and REST interfaces, SDK
    REST – builds on top of http request.
    July 2002 – AWS 1.0, basic merchandizing capability
    November 2002 – AWS 2.0, marketplace support, quick-click
    April 2003 – AWS 3.0, seller, apis, remote shopping cart, co-branding
    An important part is their asscoaite id.

    3 classes of API

  • merchandising
  • selling
  • buying

    -provide free open APIs
    -enable ennovation by 3rd parties
    -leverage investment tech
    -provide an economic model that works for all parties

    How AWS works?
    browser -> 3rd party webserver ->aws web server -> amazon platform and back again
    <- <- <-

    What does aws enable?

  • customized shopping expreience
  • rich presentation
  • better control of presentation
  • user stickingess
  • more revenue for associates
  • new shopping/browsing models

    Some links

    AWS – Open Model

  • free access to amazon catalog data
  • simple licensing model
  • docu and accessible apis
  • frequent relesase
  • open and reactive development prcoess
  • broad developer support
  • developer boards
  • weekly developer chats

    AWS – Licensing Model

  • use data to create applications
  • 1 call per second
  • cannot resll out data
  • can display and use data
  • must link to our site
  • store non-pricing data for up to 24hours
  • store pricing data for up to 1 hour

    I wish I had a link to the authors presentation. It was really good. My notes here will
    not do the presentation justice. I’ll email the author and see if I can get them.
    I wish he had longer to speak.

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