Engineering

Engineering Blog

TTL as a Service: Automatic Revocation of Stale Privileges

Security and usability are often at odds with one another, a fact that is best illustrated by access control. Deny everyone, and you’ll have a super secure system that no one can use; allow everyone, and you’ll maximize usability at the cost of security. The Principle of Least Privilege exists to balance both security and usability by giving users only the minimum amount of access they need to do their job. This reduces the attack surface by preventing attackers from leveraging a compromised user’s important, albeit unused, privileges for vertical/horizontal escalation. The Problem That said, there are a few key...

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All About Yelp Hackathon

All About Yelp Hackathon By: Alex Phillips It’s time for our fall Hackathon! At Yelp, Hackathons are two-day events that provide unstructured time for our engineering and product teams to work on whatever may scratch their creative itch! Hackathon truly embodies our company values of “Playing Well with Others” and “Being Unboring,” as it invites us to participate in so many different ways. Engineers have the liberty to work on projects related to or completely outside the box of the Yelp product. We’ve seen many types of projects over the years from music videos and new photo classification algorithms to...

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A Guide to Software Engineering for the Visually Impaired

Introduction My name is Abrar Sheikh, and I’m a backend engineer on Yelp’s Distributed Systems team. Our team enables real-time data transfers between microservices and different data stores by building streaming infrastructure on top of Kafka using technologies like Python, Scala, and Apache Flink. I suffer from a genetic disorder called Albinism, which is mainly characterized by two things: Lack of pigmentation in the body, resulting in a white skin and hair tone. Severe loss of vision, which limits the ability to perform routine tasks such as driving, reading, or using computers. Growing up, I was fascinated by computers. Luckily...

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The Yelp Production Engineering Documentation Style Guide

Documentation is something that many of us in software and site reliability engineering struggle with – even if we recognize its importance, it can still be a struggle to write it consistently and to write it well. While we in Yelp’s Production Engineering group are no different, over the last few quarters we’ve engaged in a concerted effort to do something about it. One of the first steps towards changing this process was developing our documentation style guide, something that started out as a Hackathon project late last year. I spoke about it when I was giving my talk on...

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How We’re Keeping Our Android UI Consistent

Every day, we ship the Yelp experience to millions of users through our website and mobile apps. Our design team is committed to shaping the best interfaces to make Yelp easier to understand and more practical for users. Writing a review should be as simple as searching for a restaurant or reserving a table on Yelp. The Yelp experience must be consistent across all products and platforms where we ship our applications. For this reason, every app has to comply with our trusty Yelp style guide. This post will explain how we’ve built an Android library around our style guide...

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First AWE EU Summit

At Yelp we pride ourselves on employee inclusiveness and building employee resource groups. We are excited to share with you the learnings of our first Awesome Women in Engineering (AWE) Summit in Europe, a one-day event on diversity and inclusion, leadership, and tech. We have two engineering offices in Europe, located in Hamburg and London. The AWE groups from both offices recently joined forces and co-organized the summit. The event was open to all Yelpers and the sessions were recorded so that we could share them with other Yelpers who weren’t able to attend. The summit opened up public speaking...

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Yelp Dataset Challenge: Round 10 Winners And Round 12 Announcement

Round 10 Winners The tenth round of the Yelp Dataset Challenge ran throughout the second half of 2017 and we received many impressive, original, and fascinating submissions. As usual, we were struck by the quality of the entries: keep up the good work, folks! Today, we are proud to announce the grand prize winner of the $5,000 award: “Understanding Hidden Memories of Recurrent Neural Networks” by Yao Ming, Shaozu Cao, Ruixiang Zhang, Zhen Li, Yuanzhe Chen, Yangqiu Song, and Huamin Qu (from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology). These authors developed a visual analytics method for understanding and...

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Happy 10th Birthday to Yelp on iOS!

Yelp hit a big milestone last week: ten years ago, Yelp launched on the Apple App Store! On July 10th, 2008, Apple officially launched what was then known as the iPhone App Store, giving iPhone users their first-ever opportunity to run third-party native apps on their devices. It launched with a whopping 552 apps available for download, including the Yelp app! At the time, Yelp was only available in the U.S. (we would launch in Canada a few weeks later), and offered an incredible breadth of functionality: you could search for businesses, read reviews, and even bookmark! Staggering. It’s not...

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