- Taboola Blog
Something strange happened while I worked with Kafka. While adding a new consumer from Kafka to one of our services, the service stopped consuming from ALL other existing consumers. As part of my job at Taboola as a team leader on a production team in the Infrastructure group, we’re supposed to remove bottlenecks, not create them. This post will describe how I investigated the issue, explain what I discovered, and share my insights into the whole situation. Some background Before I get into the rest of the story, here’s some background on how we use Kafka at Taboola’s events handling pipeline and why it’s critical to our infrastructure. Taboola’s recommendations appear on tens of thousands of web pages and mobile apps every second. As users engage with the content, multiple events are fired to signal that recommendations are rendered, opened, clicked, and so on. Each event triggers one or more Kafka messages, […]
Find out the secrets to how Taboola deploys and manages the thousands of servers that bring you recommendations every day.
The integration between a newly developed code into an existing code is always a challenge. Recently I was assigned a task to develop a new app inside Taboola’s Backstage. As a developer who is always looking to learn new technologies, I decided to develop it using React, Redux and Middleware. I have never developed using Redux and Middleware, only old-school React. So the first thing I had to do was to learn how to use these funky libraries. With the help of my wonderful teammates, who had some experience with these libraries, I had an easy start. I was able to create my project and install Redux. Then I became acquainted with the single source of truth concept and how to create actions. Challenges ahead Backstage was not developed using React, which raised two concerns. First, I did not want to break the existing code. Second, how to integrate […]
The web is full of third-party scripts. Sites use them for ads, analytics, retargeting, and more. But this isn’t always the whole story. Scripts are unpredictable, they execute code, but you don’t know what this code actually does. With Taboola’s advertising video player solution, we struggle with 3rd party scripts daily. Working with different advertisers has exposed us to a variety of malicious behavior: sound violations, auto scroll and change page DOM are just some of them. In this post we’ll take a closer look at how we detect sound violations. Steer clear of 3rd party script risks A sound violation is a state in which the video plays sound without user interaction. Several advertisers do this, to ensure that the user will notice their ads. We struggled with this often and received lots of complaints from publishers. Sound violations should be prevented by the video player, but […]
Imagine you’re walking down the street and you see a nice car you’re thinking of buying. Just by pointing your phone camera, you can see relevant content about that car. How cool is that?! That was our team’s idea that awarded us first place in the recent Taboola R&D hackathon aptly named – Taboola Zoom! Every year Taboola holds a global R&D hackathon for its 350+ engineers aimed at creating ideas for cool potential products or just some fun experiments in general. This year, 33 teams worked for 36 hours to come up with ideas that are both awesome and helpful to Taboola. Some of the highlights included a tool that can accurately predict the users’ gender based on their browsing activity and an integration to social networks for Taboola Feed. Our team decided to create an AR (Augmented Reality) application that allows a user to get content recommendations, […]
This is a tale of heroism, of overcoming obstacles and hardships. This is a tale of ingenuity, of originality and thinking outside the box. This is a tale… of how I was too lazy to go and look if someone was already playing table tennis in the game room. Hiking Across the Office is a Drag Taboola’s Israeli office in Tel Aviv, houses about 350 people, spread over five large floors. The game room, however is smack dab in the middle of them. In smaller companies, if you wanted to know if the game room was available, all you had to do was to look slightly over your monitor and you would have your answer. Here, it takes 60 seconds and 110 steps, including one flight of stairs, to get from my workstation all the way to the game room – believe me, I counted. Unfortunately, due […]