retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Wired.com reports that for 49 minutes yesterday, Amazon.com's homepage was down. Customers who went there found instead a white page and an error message that read, “Http/1.1 Service Unavailable."

Only the main webpage was down. Other Amazon pages appeared to be working.

No word yet about why.

CNN writes: "The outage was short, but it's extremely rare for Amazon.com to crash. Amazon depends on heavy e-commerce traffic, especially around the holidays, so it has famously massive server capacity to handle traffic spikes. Even a few minutes of downtime can cost the company millions.

"Its powerful 'elastic' infrastructure, called EC2, is designed to minimize downtime as much as possible. Amazon has so much spare server capacity, in fact, that it runs a sideline business, Amazon Web Services, hosting other websites. Amazon Web Services remained unaffected by Thursday's outage, according to Amazon's status dashboard."
KC's View:
Somehow, I'm not surprised. Early afternoon, I sort of staggered backward - I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I feared something terrible had happened.

Now, I know.