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47 Degrees helps businesses delight audiences with cutting-edge event management solutions

The Need

Event organizers and attendees expect conferences, webinars and product demonstrations to run seamlessly. Any unexpected disruption could have a negative impact on a host company’s reputation—especially when launching new products or services to an audience of VIP clients, peers, and shareholders.

Many companies rely on 47 Degrees’ wide range of event-related applications and backends to create memorable conference experiences. Using 47 Degrees solutions, businesses can easily manage event social networking and handle all the complex organizational tasks required to run international conferences, business-critical client meetings, and much more.

The Challenge

With both large enterprises and startups across multiple sectors reliant on its solutions, 47 Degrees set out to ensure that its event services could deliver round-the-clock reliability and powerful functionality.

Crucially, 47 Degrees solutions needed to be able to handle sudden peaks in demand created by multiple users interacting with its services simultaneously. For instance, when many users log in to access presentations, stream videos, participate in surveys or respond to RSVPs during an event, this places additional workload on servers powering 47 Degrees’ API-enabled mobile and web solutions.

To cope with increased user activity without causing any disruption to its services, 47 Degrees built backends based on the Spring Framework and Java platform. However, the company found that scaling this existing solution required a significant amount of manual effort and coding—limiting its ability to adapt rapidly to unpredictable surges in user activity.

The Solution

To enhance the scalability and flexibility of its services, 47 Degrees decided to develop its solutions using the Scala programming language, Play Framework, and the Akka Platform—a comprehensive suite of microservices from Lightbend for building applications.

Using Scala, 47 Degrees could leverage and reuse many existing Java libraries. And with the Akka Platform supporting all its HTTP needs and offering seamless integration with existing Scala and Java resources, 47 Degrees could take advantage of the latest innovations in application development.

Raúl Raja Martínez, Co-Founder at 47 Degrees, reflects: “We have witnessed a growing community and success cases everywhere involving big players. We are more certain than ever that we have made the best choice by moving our server development to Scala and Lightbend’s Akka Platform, replacing our previous middleware Java and Spring stack.”

Many of the programming challenges that 47 Degrees developers face are often best addressed with multiple sequences and operations that can run simultaneously. As the Akka Platform is built with concurrency and distributed computing in mind, it provides 47 Degrees with a comprehensive set of tools that the company can apply to even the most complex tasks.

Raúl Raja Martínez continues: “It is very natural to reason around concurrency problems using Akka and the Scala Futures and we spend less time worrying how to implement multithreaded processes in Java. With the Lightbend solution we can we focus on the application and not general concurrency problems.”

The Results

Since embracing Scala and Play for application development, 47 Degrees now uses the Akka Platform for all client-facing projects, which makes it easier for the company to build scalable, resilient, and reactive applications able to support large-scale events and conferences.

Raúl Raja Martínez comments: “Java is great but makes development around concurrency and parallelism harder than it should be. We build faster, better and less verbose applications on Akka Platform, which reduces our delivery time and keeps our projects on schedule.”

He continues: “We have found that with the Play Framework—and its stateless model—we have a predictable shared-nothing architecture that scales horizontally with ease. In turn, this ensures that our applications are always available to serve requests.”

After dramatically reducing its code base by moving application development to Scala, Play Framework and Akka Platform, 47 Degrees has helped its developers to be four times more productive. At the same time, 47 Degrees has reduced maintenance risks, and slashed development times—freeing up more time for developers to focus on delivering elegant solutions.

Raúl Raja Martínez concludes: “With Akka Platform from Lightbend, we are able to deliver scalable backend services from day one. What’s more, our customers never have to worry about spending valuable time and money on re-working their applications to support increased resource demands.”

Founded in 2010, 47 Degrees is a software development and creative agency specializing in the creation of native mobile applications, highly scalable infrastructures, and application programming interfaces (APIs). With a focus on user interaction, usability, design, and server scalability, the company is committed to helping businesses drive innovation.

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