Four Historical Moments of Ali Technology - Apsara 2022

Date: Oct 1, 2022

In the history of Ali's technological development, there have been a total of four key technological decisions.

At Alibaba's 20th anniversary annual meeting, Jack Ma mentioned "technology" 21 times in his nearly 3,000-word speech. He reminded everyone: "This technological revolution is the most profound change in human history. The technological revolution has brought about The impact is far beyond everyone's imagination." He gave a new assertion: "If the past 20 years are the 20 years of Internet companies, then the next 30 years will be 30 years of making good use of Internet technology."

This is not the first time Jack Ma who "doesn't understand technology" has talked about technology.

In 2009, Alibaba established Alibaba Cloud ten years after its founding. At that time, many giants were noncommittal about the future of cloud computing. At a public event in 2010, Li Yanhong said that cloud computing is just old wine in a new bottle, and there has been nothing new in 15 years. Ma Huateng believes that it is still too early for cloud computing to be used like hydropower. Ma Yun said at the time: "Cloud computing is ultimately a kind of sharing, a mechanism for data processing, storage and sharing. We are full of confidence and hope in cloud computing. "Now Alibaba Cloud has ranked among the top three in the world and the first in Asia-Pacific, participating in the global cloud computing market competition.

At the Apsara conference in 2016, Ma Yun proposed new retail and new technologies. He believes that data is the oil of the future, and machines eat not electricity, but data.

Perhaps it is precisely because Jack Ma "doesn't understand technology" that he maintains an open and receptive attitude towards new technologies, as he said: "What I am most afraid of is old wine in new bottles, you can't see what he is playing. , it is the most terrifying to burst out suddenly. After a new thing comes out, we will seriously think about it and pay attention to it, and there may be some new problems. "

Today, Alibaba has changed from a commercial company in people's impression to a technology company with great technical temperament. In his speech at Alibaba's 20th anniversary annual meeting, Jack Ma said: "Alibaba has now become a technology company." Frozen Three feet is not a day's cold. Alibaba has been a technology company for 20 years. It has overcome difficulties several times, and finally dripped through the stone. Alibaba has completed a long march of technology in 20 years Apsara conference 2022.

Having a clear goal and working hard along the right path is more important than the effort itself. In the history of Alibaba's technological development, there were a total of four key technological decisions Apsara conference 2022.

Apsara conference 2022 first time was to IOE, the second time was Feitian, the third time was Zhongtai, and the fourth time was Bodhidharma.

Go to IOE: Use business to force technology development

In 2005, Taobao's market share surpassed that of eBay, showing the spirit of a king. However, Ali's technical system felt more and more support pressure Apsara conference 2022.

For the database system, Taobao initially used the open source LAMP architecture (Linux+Apache+MySQL+PHP). To meet the needs of business, Alibaba, faced with new technology choices, selected Oracle, the most mature commercial database, and gradually formed an architecture system of IBM+Oracle+EMC, which was the common choice of large companies including eBay at that time Apsara conference 2022.

Apsara conference 2022 "IOE" architecture is relatively closed, with high disaster recovery costs, high operation and maintenance costs, and difficulty in rapid capacity expansion. It is not suitable for the long-term development of Internet companies. Two years later, Alibaba engineers found that the IOE architecture could no longer carry fast-growing businesses. They encountered the boundaries of business systems and looked around and could not find a business system that could solve the problem Apsara conference 2022.

Businesses don't wait for anyone, and Alibaba's engineers have to choose again. They first use the systems developed by themselves for some non-important business applications, and then gradually apply them to the core business. In January 2010, Alibaba Group officially launched the "IOE" plan, taking the route of "replacing vertical expansion with horizontal expansion, and replacing commercial software with open source", replacing IOE with PC Server, MySql open source database and self-developed systems. structure. On May 17, 2013, Alipay's last IBM minicomputer went offline, marking the completion of Ali's "going to IOE", a process that only lasted three years Apsara conference 2022.

Ali's implementation of IOE is a business consideration, but it has far-reaching significance. Enterprises are highly dependent on IOE equipment, which greatly increases IT costs; on the other hand, it will limit the flexibility and innovation of enterprises in the digital economy era Apsara conference 2022.

In 2009, Alibaba Cloud was officially launched, and Taobao Mall (the predecessor of Tmall) fired the first shot of Double 11. Looking back, these two events largely determined Alibaba's business map today Apsara conference 2022.

When Ali's business is developing rapidly, going to IOE is like "changing wheels on the highway", which is a difficult choice for Ali. Alibaba's e-commerce and financial businesses have high requirements for system stability, and the consequences of major database problems are unimaginable. In this case, some companies may still "forbearance" and seek a compromise solution. However, Ali still decisively made the first key technical choice, using business to force the development of technology, and has continued this idea to this day.

Tmall Double 11 is an example. In Jack Ma’s words, Double 11 is already a training ground for Alibaba’s ecology. With the increase in transaction volume year after year, Tmall Double 11 has repeatedly tested and forced Ali technology. In 2018, the transaction volume of Tmall Double 11 exceeded 213.5 billion. Whether it is Taobao, Tmall or Alipay, there is no problem. Ali's technical capabilities are different from those of ten years ago.

For a long time, Alibaba's technology is not a "research institute" type, that is, it first reserves a large amount of technology and then finds scenarios. Alibaba adopts the idea of ​​​​using business to force technology development. As long as business develops rapidly, technology will become more and more sophisticated, and vice versa. Drive business growth and form a positive cycle. Alibaba understands better than anyone else: technologies that cannot be implemented in business scenarios and cannot solve practical problems have no value.

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