What Really Happens Inside a Web Server

This comic created by Flickr user Dan King (dannyk6) is a funny but oh-so-true explanation of how an end user gets their web pages delivered to them from a typical CMS based website (much like this very blog). Clicking the image above takes you to Dan King’s blog where you can see the full comic.

This made me stop and think. Have you ever considered the raw complexity that is within each and every personal computer that you touch? What about every enterprise class server or appliance? The things that were luxurious a few years ago are now open sourced, given away and hissy-fit material if our vendor doesn’t supply it yesterday.

Maybe I was primed for this topic since I’ve been working on more web based sysadmin tasks (WordPress, Joomla, Apache… I don’t know if I want to marry mod_rewrite or assault its creators). However, give pause for a few moments and think how far things have come.

Be thankful we don’t have to code in octal or worry about registers. Unless you like that sort of thing, in which case you should probably go organize your magnetized needle collection.

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