The Riverbed Blog (testing)

A blog in search of a tagline

The rap on RAAP

Posted by bobegilbert on July 18, 2011

Today's blog is from Philip O'Toole, an engineer on our Cloud Steelhead development team, based in San Francisco.

Riverbed runs a unique program for its development and test engineers — every so Fort lauderdale often it sends us to some exotic, faraway places. While there we can sample the local cuisine, see the sites, and enjoy better weather than that in San Francisco. All we have to do is install cutting edge software on our selected customers' appliances on-site, giving them early access to our latest features.  🙂

Could life be really this good at Riverbed? Well, it's certainly good for our customers — and it's all thanks to the Riverbed Advanced Access Program (RAAP). Before Riverbed release a new version of the RiOS software, several engineers go on-site with a pre-selected customer and install the pre-release code on their appliances. We discuss the new features with the customer, test it in their network, and return with their feedback to our colleagues at headquarters.

I've always been quite impressed with the program. It keeps us engineers in touch with the customers, shows us the strengths of our products in the field, and points out the areas needing improvement.

It also teaches us Development engineers to think about the product holistically — which was an explicit goal of the program when it was first devised. We can get very involved with a single part of the new software, sometimes losing perspective. The RAAP helps us to design better products when we are reminded that Riverbed needs to sell a solution, not just a box running some clever software.

Our customers get significant direct benefit from the program too. In my experience they admire the quality of our products, so are interested in talking to the developers and testers. Just as we can learn something from them, they can gain new insight on how WAN optimization works — and that makes them more effective in their own roles.

So if you're interested in getting a sneak-peek at our next release, sign up for the RAAP at:

http://www.riverbed.com/us/communities/raap_beta.php

Speaking solely as a development engineer, customers located in the French Riviera, Hawaii, and Tahiti are particularly welcome. 🙂

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One Response to “The rap on RAAP”

  1. I love reading your article,just keep posting a good article.

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