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eBay Touts Open Source Technology

The following is an excerpt from a post published on eBay’s Corporate Blog by eBay’s Sebastian Rupley:

At eBay, we were founded with the core belief that we should use technology to empower and connect people, globally. In the technology world, we’re a core contributor to and believer in open source technology. Not only does a company culture of open source help us empower our developers, but it also enables our technologists to collaborate across the organization and with peers across the industry.

Our approach is simple: we first look for open source solutions and if we don’t find them, we build products internally that we often then contribute back to the open source community. With a company focus on transforming our platform to create a cutting-edge shopping experience, our technology organization has worked to not only think long-term and reimagine commerce, but we’ve also replatformed eBay, harnessing open source in numerous ways. These efforts range from leveraging its structured data to deploying cutting-edge mobile browsing technologies such as AMP.

Now, eBay is out with an updated version 4 of Marko, a simple, intuitive and performant user interface component building library. Marko was created in-house at eBay and is fully open source. Among its many benefits, Marko greatly accelerates the performance of eBay’s pages and browsing modules, ensuring shoppers are getting the fastest experience available when browsing on eBay.

Given eBay’s business model, site speed is critical. Therefore, eBay developers are always looking for new ways to create faster loading web apps. One method of reducing page load times is by flushing server-rendered HTML over the wire as early as possible and to keep code size small, so that users can quickly view and interact with pages.

According to Senior Software Engineer Patrick Steele-Idem, Marko directly contributes to a faster and more efficient browsing experience. “Marko offers a familiar pattern for building a UI, but it has a very different architecture and design,” said Steele-Idem. “While most UI component libraries have optimized for either the server or the browser, Marko has optimized for both. Marko renders to an HTML stream on the server, but UI components compiled for the browser render to an efficient virtual DOM. To further boost page performance, the Marko client-side runtime code was deliberately kept small and only weighs in at around 10KB compressed. This drastically reduces the time that a browser spends parsing and executing JavaScript, making it an ideal choice for even older mobile devices.”

Marko is just one example of eBay’s many contributions to the open source community. To read more about eBay’s involvement with other open source projects, see the following:

Apache Kylin – a sophisticated big data analysis tool which eBay donated to the Apache Software Foundation, where it is now stewarded as a top-level open source project.

Apache Eagle– a monitoring system for Hadoop, donated to the Apache Software Foundation.

fabio – a fast, modern, zero-conf load balancing HTTP(S) router for deploying microservices.

Interested in hearing more about Marko? If so, you can get additional information on the Marko website. Join the conversation and contribute on Github.

See the full post on the eBay blog:

Source: eBay Corporate Blog post

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.