A few weeks ago we launched the Skyscanner Facebook Messenger bot. Designed to give simple answers to complicated travel questions inside Facebook Messenger, the bot forms part of a wider move we’re seeing towards Conversations as a channel, alongside (and overlapping with) web and app.
This post will go over some of our experiences in building the bot – how we set ourselves up, what sort of technology we used to allow us to move quickly, and how we moved from concept to production in just 42 days.
Posted on by Dani Ametller
…and other related stories
So, we got ourselves this fairly new service called ECS (early adopter alert!). ECS is a multi-layer acronym for (Elastic Compute Cloud) Container Service.
The idea is that you simply define your tasks as Docker images, you give them a cluster to run on and the ECS does the rest for you. You can just say how many of your tasks you want to run, and ECS will try to figure out where to place them, when to start and when to kill. Great.
The notion of ‘when to start and when to kill’ might sound alarm bells in your head: if so, here’s our experience of cooperative scaling on AWS ECS.
Posted on by Richard Davidson
This episode we talk about bots. Skyscanner recently released our Facebook Messenger bot and we talk about how we did this and what the future of bots may be.
Posted on by Csaba Toth
As developers of Skyscanner’s iOS app, we’re always thinking about the performance of the application. We know that even if we have a great application with a lot of features, lag can hamper the whole UX. Here are our top three tips to help address app performance.
Posted on by Filip Filipov
APIs have become the life-blood of the modern Internet; they are powerful tools that open a stream of highly valuable data upon which start-ups can create a working foundation for their new tools.
Skyscanner has committed itself to being as open as possible in providing its travel APIs to start-ups and new businesses. We want to make our data, which has taken years to build into a comprehensive and cutting-edge travel search engine, available to others as they start on their own mission to bring something new to the game.
Posted on by Tamas Karai
You might have read our previous blog post about data driven development in apps, although if you haven’t, you can find that blog post here. This post is a more detailed overview showcasing the technical details and motivations behind building our new mobile analytics framework.
Posted on by Akos Kapui
Mobile first design often refers to a principle that puts UI/UX designs for mobile devices before desktop web. However, the implications that come with this go way beyond the UI. A mobile first strategy requires a new approach to planning, development, UX – and it requires a new approach to API design as well. Although using the same RESTful APIs for all platforms would be possible, in reality it creates constraints for the mobile experience. The benefit of designing user-interfaces only for the web was a massive simplification and we (engineers) can easily get used to this level of comfort. This article is going to discuss design considerations for service APIs that enable teams to deliver a mobile first experience.
Posted on by Stephen Hailey
Skyscanner is powered by a constantly evolving collection of systems which have been implemented at different times, by different teams and using different technologies. As part of this evolution I have been exploring options for porting some of our .Net services from Windows-based servers to Linux-based Docker containers by using .Net Core. Along the way I have contributed back to the open source Compare .Net Objects project to add .Net Core support and discuss the details of what was involved below.
Posted on by Robbie Cole
Episode 6 of the Code Voyagers podcast is now available! In this episode we chat about internationalisation and localisation and how we do it at Skyscanner.
Posted on by Richard Davidson
We missed a week on the blog, so this week we have two podcast episodes.
First we have our first non-Skyscanner guest.
Clarke Ching joins us to discuss Theory of Constraints and the benefits of using these techniques at a software company like Skyscanner.