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Parse was a backend as a service company built in 2011 before being acquired by Facebook in 2013. Building a backend as a service for developers requires walking a thin line between giving engineers lots of control and preventing those engineers from shooting themselves in the foot.
While she was at Parse, Charity Majors learned about the operational burdens of managing a service with high uptime requirements and deeply technical edge cases that could take down a user’s entire system. Charity took the lessons in systems engineering that she learned at Parse and cofounded Honeycomb.io, a service for observability and monitoring. Honeycomb is described as a tool for your systems like an IDE is to your code.
Parse was eventually shut down because the service did not have a place in the strategic plans of Facebook. Charity and I also discussed the lessons learned from how the Parse acquisition panned out–a useful conversation for anyone who is considering selling a company or acquiring a startup.