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Firebase is a backend-as-a-service. The key efficiency of a backend-as-a-service is that it enables developers to go from having a 3-tier architecture (client, server, database) to a 2-tier architecture (client, backend-as-a-service).
The team who started Firebase built it as a pivot. They had started a social network, and then they realized there wasn’t a good backend for chat tools. And so they started a chat-as-a-service tool, for people who wanted to include chat in their applications. And that led them to the fundamental realization that chat is actually representative of a broader category of real-time synchronization problems. Firebase was eventually acquired by Google.
Doug Stevenson is a senior developer advocate with Google and the host of Meet Firebase, a YouTube talk show about Firebase. It was a pleasure to sit down for a conversation with him, especially because I recently started using Firebase in my own application as a backend for real-time chat.
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