Spotlight: Moviepilot’s realtime build status board

Moviepilot is a network for film fans interested in upcoming movies around the globe. Moviepilot Labs recently released Shoutbox, a free, centralized system status dashboard service which requires pretty much zero configuration.

What was the problem you were trying to solve?

We wanted a real-time dashboard where we could visualize the current status of our project build. Initially we started using another WebSockets server, but it was acting oddly, requiring us to manually refresh our browser to see if there were changes in the status of our project.

What benefits does a realtime dashboard give your team?

A dashboard gives you an abstract view on your system without the need of actively collecting information snippets from various sources. As a dashboard screen on a wall can be seen by a lot of people it saves time regarding looking after systems and reducing the risk of overlooking a failure.

How can other development teams benefit from the dashboard/Shoutbox?

We know of other development teams having a dashboard screen in their development room. As the borders between server administration and development are rather blurry nowadays, an easy dashboard solution fills the niche between manual checking and complicated monitoring.

How did Pusher allow you to solve it?

Once we replaced the other server with Pusher, Shoutbox started to behave as we were expecting, now we can say that it gets updated as soon as we send messages to Pusher :D

I would totally recommend going with Pusher over having your own WebSockets server. With Pusher things just work, with another server you might need to think about it.

Are there any benefits of using a hosted solution over a self hosted one?

The main advantages of a hosted solution are of course: You can focus on usage instead of also having to take care of the solution itself.

Thanks to Caspar, Adolfo and the rest of the Moviepilotlabs team for a great service and an interesting case study. If you’ve built something useful and/or weird and wonderful we’d love to hear from you.

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