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Great observation
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Great observation

It may sound like the crypto space is having all the tongue-twisting fun lately with DAOs, web3, NFTs — but IT teams have recently worked new jargon into their repertoire as well. It’s worthwhile for non-technicals to get acquainted with, because there’s a growing list of thriving startups in this space.

Observability, in the software world, is when you measure and track a system’s state from the data it generates. There are three key pillars: logs, metrics, and traces. If you’re not an expert, you’d be forgiven for explaining the concept as “monitoring.” However…

“Put simply, monitoring measures something and then evaluates the result of that measurement against a defined standard to tell you whether something is good or bad...” explains the Grafana website. “Observability refers to gathering as much information as possible... to ask questions across that information… These are questions that are not anticipated in advance, like monitoring presumes, but rather questions that arise due to unexpected or novel events within a system.”

Grafana was one of three most-promising observability startups to earn unicorn status this year (along with Chronosphere and Cribl) and announced partnerships with Microsoft and Amazon to bring observability services to Azure and AWS. Epsagon has enjoyed a great year too. The Israel-based company offers serverless observability, enabling companies to search and troubleshoot events across microservices.

Epsagon makers first launched the product back in 2018, and updated the tech community last week with Epsagon 2.0. With the new launch, Epsagon has updated its pricing model, giving everyone access its tool for free, with up to 10M traces per month and unlimited alerts and metrics.

This comes a few months after the team announced its acquisition by Cisco. Cisco’s Liz Centoni sums up the value of the technology well in a blog:

“Cisco’s approach to full-stack observability gives our customers the ability to move beyond just monitoring to a paradigm that delivers shared context across teams and enables our customers to deliver exceptional digital experiences, optimize for cost, security and performance and maximize digital business revenue.”

Cat Nips
  • Developers loved the launch of Formspree over the weekend. Makers simply submit front end code to the Formspree API to generate a form.
  • Tired of repetitive TED talks? TED SMRZR lets you compare similar TED talks by reading their summaries — in 73+ languages.
  • If you’re a maker that’s found most e-mail countdowns look like 💩,, you might like this alternative email timer that other makers created for you to use for free.
  • Gameon Active is like Airbnb but for helping schools, leisure centers, community halls, etc. book their facilities.
  • Feeling frisky? Crack up at these NSFW logos or these NSFW NFTs (hint: 🍆) which also support a great cause.
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The Gumroad lifestyle

Gumroad has unveiled a new brand, with founder Sahil Lavingia noting on the company’s blog: “We’ve revisited every decision we’ve ever made about our unique business strategy to center the things that make us unique... We’re not just a tech platform, we’re promoting a lifestyle.”

The rebranding sits within a new chapter for Lavingia and Gumroad. The founder has written openly about the startup’s struggles after it had exhausted its funding and his own feelings of failure. Gumroad has now slimmed down and reprioritized, which has translated into things like dissolving work hours, sharing financials, and pursuing crowdfunding instead of venture capital.

In step with these changes, Lavignia’s launched his book, “The Minimalist Entrepreneur,” last month, too. You can check that out along with…

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Weekly Digest
Every Monday
THE curated list of the best in tech each week — the top 10 products of the week, the big headlines only, and emerging trends.