It’s always fun to visit the Triangle and see what the cool kids are working on…
So what does an ad server do? It serves ads. (You’re welcome.) For example, say you visit stackoverflow.com — Adzerk’s ad server will determine which ads you see on the sidebar. Someone visiting the site from Austin, Texas on a Sunday afternoon using Chrome would see a different ad than someone in Australia.
Obviously, speed is a priority, and Adzerk’s ad server has been processing 10,000 – 16,000 requests per second. There is no time for database calls, so they use a ginormous JSON blob.
So Node.js is ideally suited for this kind of thing — responding to a ton of requests very quickly. Nate Kohari of Adzerk explained that it would be less useful for web apps that required a lot of intense processing of each request.
While I love seeing how other folks build these kinds of cutting-edge web apps, I told my CIO that hanging out with the node.js folks made me feel like I had rented a programmer costume from the Halloween store or something.