Deploying, automating and managing production Rails applications is always changing – new stack elements, new features in our cloud platforms, and new tools to help development. We think many of these features will be interesting to you whilst they are still in development. If you do too then welcome to the Engine Yard Beta Program! In advance, we want to thank you for your participation. Your feedback is very much appreciated. It helps us ensure we continue to deliver top quality features to you and all of our customers. There are three parts to our Beta Program:
- Beta Announcements
- Alpha Features and Improvements
- Beta Features and Improvements
We care about you and your production Rails applications. If you are interested in the latest features and stack improvements we’d prefer that you self-selected yourself, rather than us notifying all 1500+ hard-working customer teams. So, we created a Beta Announcements mailing list to quietly inform you about new features that you can trial, if you or your team are interested. It is self-selecting – join if you are interested. Of course, I personally highly recommend it for all customers to give you visibility into what features are coming down the Engine Yard pipeline. Something wonderful and empowering might be coming soon! The Beta Announcements list is only available to Engine Yard customers. To join the Beta Announcements list:
- Go to the Documentation site
- Login (via the top right “Login” link)
- Follow the new Beta link at the top of the page
- Or go to the Beta Announcements section
- Fill in your email and click Subscribe!
“Alpha” features are initially implemented with the minimum required functionality, are still in development, and may use Open Source technology that itself is not qualified as “production-ready”. We think some customers and partners may want it sooner than later and are happy to help us iron out any missing bits. For this reason we created a way for a small handful of our customers to help us, and for us to help you, on each new feature. We call these Alpha Features. For Open Source stack items, the underlying technology might be rock solid but it may be classed as an “Alpha Feature” because it is relatively new to the Engine Yard Technology Stack. Once a few customers have trialled it and given it the green light, and we’ve finished our documentation and Support training, we’ll move it to Beta and beyond. Alpha features are currently available to test on an as requested basis for customers who are willing to help us move these important features forward from Alpha to Beta. Alpha features carry a warning: do not request support via the normal support channels. The current list of Alpha features is top secret, but includes [redacted], [redacted], and [redacted]. [Ed: @drnic seriously, stop it.] Engine Yard customers, jump into the Beta site (see instructions above) to see the current list and request access if they excite you.
When we feel a feature is close to being ready for production applications, has been used and verified by a handful of customers, has a set of documentation and once our Support team is trained on the feature/technology, we will then promote the feature from “Alpha” to “Beta”. Beta features are visible and usable by all Engine Yard customers but carry a warning: do not request support via the normal support channels. There is a mailing list for each Beta feature to discuss bugs, issues and feature requests with Engine Yard staff and other Engine Yard customers. The current list of Beta features isn’t top secret at all. It has been omitted from this post for the sake of brevity, replaced instead with this long sentence.
Access to the Beta program does not require an Engine Yard Support agreement. If you help us to help you with new features, we are extremely grateful. Each new feature or improvement has its own support channel, rather than the standard support channels like the ticketing system, community site, IRC, etc.
The Beta page will now be the canonical page describing which features are available for trial, how to access them, how to request support and report bugs. It is very exciting to continually improve the transparency of operations at Engine Yard, and make it easier and more engaging to talk with our customers. Again, many thanks in advance for your assistance. We’re grateful you’re willing to help us deliver a wonderful Engine Yard service and experience to make your web applications successful.