Jan 9, 2018

Living in the data

A day in the life of Kiwi.com’s Head of Search.

Handling 85 million searches by 155 nationalities per day is fun and we do everything possible to keep it that way. That’s why being one of the 230 people in our heavily technical staff feels great. There’s a lot of us but we still value individuality and make sure that people are happy to come to work.

However, managing all these searches can be a bit challenging. Some people (like me), throw “obstacles” in the way of our devs. Just like…

— “Hey Jenda, can you make the median time of returning a result less than 3 milliseconds? And while you’re combining all 2.5 billion raw flights every 2 hours, can you personalise the results as much as possible?”

— “Hey Jirka!” As Jenda is preparing 20 TB of combinations (all in-memory), “why not filter these intelligently and price them in some classy manner?”

— “Hey Tomáš, any idea how many of our 800 servers do we use for this? I know we’ve been already doing more than 1 billion updates in the database every hour but those 2 billion flights don’t process themselves…”

That is why I have “Life is Joy!” as a status message on Slack 😉

To be able to hit our goals — a side effect of which is selling 613,8% more flights than in 2015 — I like my devs skilled and happy. Annually, the guys here spend more than 540 work days on conferences and conventions.

However, we are also known for our Work hard, play harder motto. We’re not alcoholics but these numbers are quite staggering. Altogether we have the ability to drink 210 litres of liquor, 200+ litres of beer, and about 20 litres of wine per party.

We also love bananas! In 2017, we ate 12 tons of them.

In the workplace, we use dogs as a happiness booster. Our 75 dogs all running around can really help you relax and forget about everything for a while.

Guessing game

As you’ve probably figured out, we like dealing with challenges. Here’s a little one for you. Can you correctly assign each of these numbers to the facts below:

18 — 25 — 81.5 — 61,000— 12,025

  • Longest time spent in the air in one booking (in hours).
  • Greatest distance flown in one booking (in km).
  • Most passengers included in one booking.
  • Most flights included in one booking.
  • Most euros spent on one booking.

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Solution

18 — Most flights included in one Kiwi.com booking

25 — Most passengers included in one booking.

81.5 hours  Longest time spent in the air in one booking (in hours).

61,000 km—Greatest distance flown in one booking (in km).

€12,025—Most euros spent on one booking.

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