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Kafka >> mail # user >> Using Kafka for "data" messages

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Re: Using Kafka for "data" messages
Hi Josh,

The idea looks very interesting. I just had one doubt.

1. A user logs in. His login id is sent on a topic
2. Other systems (consumers on this topic) consumer this message and
publish their results to another topic

This will be happening without any particular order for hundreds of users.

Now the site being displayed to the user.. How will you fetch only messages
for that user from the queue?


On Thu, Jun 13, 2013 at 8:51 PM, Josh Foure <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:

> Hi all, my team is proposing a novel
> way of using Kafka and I am hoping someone can help do a sanity check on
> this:
> 1.  When a user logs
> into our website, we will create a “logged in” event message in Kafka
> containing the user id.
> 2.  30+ systems
> (consumers each in their own consumer groups) will consume this event and
> lookup data about this user id.  They
> will then publish all of this data back out into Kafka as a series of data
> messages.  One message may include the user’s name,
> another the user’s address, another the user’s last 10 searches, another
> their
> last 10 orders, etc.  The plan is that a
> single “logged in” event may trigger hundreds if not thousands of
> additional data
> messages.
> 3.  Another system,
> the “Product Recommendation” system, will have consumed the original
> “logged in”
> message and will also consume a subset of the data messages (realistically
> I
> think it would need to consume all of the data messages but would discard
> the
> ones it doesn’t need).  As the Product
> Recommendation consumes the data messages, it will process recommended
> products
> and publish out recommendation messages (that get more and more specific
> as it
> has consumed more and more data messages).
> 4.  The original
> website will consume the recommendation messages and show the
> recommendations to
> the user as it gets them.
> You don’t see many systems implemented this way but since
> Kafka has such a higher throughput than your typical MOM, this approach
> seems
> innovative.
> The benefits are:
> 1.  If we start
> collecting more information about the users, we can simply start publishing
> that in new data messages and consumers can start processing those messages
> whenever they want.  If we were doing
> this in a more traditional SOA approach the schemas would need to change
> every time
> we added a field but with this approach we can just create new messages
> without
> touching existing ones.
> 2.  We are looking to
> make our systems smaller so if we end up with more, smaller systems that
> each
> publish a small number of events, it becomes easier to make changes and
> test
> the changes.  If we were doing this in a
> more traditional SOA approach we would need to retest each consumer every
> time
> we changed our bigger SOA services.
> The downside appears to be:
> 1.  We may be
> publishing a large amount of data that never gets used but that everyone
> needs
> to consume to see if they need it before discarding it.
> 2.  The Product Recommendation
> system may need to wait until it consumes a number of messages and keep
> track
> of all the data internally before it can start processing.
> 3.  While we may be
> able to keep the messages somewhat small, the fact that they contain data
> will
> mean they will be bigger than your tradition EDA messages.
> 4.  It seems like we
> can do a lot of this using SOA (we already have an ESB than can do
> transformations to address consumers expecting an older version of the
> data).
> Any insight is appreciated.
> Thanks,
> Josh