At Routefriend, we're taking full advantage of these innovations. Our infrastructure:
- Python with Django framework - We chose this initially to be compatible with Google App Engine. However, Google App Engine has significant obstacles at present for serious web application development. Principal among these are (1) no multithreading, (2) inability to install c-based libraries like lxml, and (3) short time-out limits for requests limit the scale of behind-the-scenes computation.
- MySQL - We're using this popular relational database for now. However, as much as possible, we're moving things that can be cached to memcached and exploring scalable key-value databases such as SimpleDB from Amazon.
- Amazon Web Services - Amazon's cloud hosting solutions, EC2 and S3, provide a flexible pay-as-you-go solution ideal for a bootstrapped startup. The best aspect of EC2 is its scalability for when traffic increases. The downside is, the price is much higher than more limited hosting solutions from godaddy or webfaction. For a web and database server I currently pay $0.50 per hour which adds up to a few hundred dollars monthly. It's not much, but it is Routefriend's biggest expense.
- Google Maps API - Routefriend's map-driven user-interface leverages the awesome power of Google Maps for geocoding and map-based presentation.