Build resilient systems at scale
28–30 October 2015 • Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Bigger, faster, and more engaging while on a budget

Nathan Bower (Zillow)
16:10–16:50 Thursday, 29/10/2015
Location: G102/103
Average rating: ***..
(3.12, 16 ratings)
Slides:   external link

Prerequisite Knowledge

An understanding of W3C Resource and User Timing.


Keeping a pulse on performance is important but proves difficult in a rapidly changing environment. One release to the next can have a significant impact on performance. Introducing performance budgets can lend a relatively simple safety net to catch unintended swings in resources, or changes in timing during page load, that might have otherwise gone unnoticed.

I’ll discuss how to create good performance budgets, why it’s important to have them in place, and tell a true story of how Zillow was able to respond quickly in a case when budgets were exceeded.

In telling this story, I will provide supporting evidence to debunk why “onload” isn’t a good measure of perceived performance, and show real business intelligence data supporting how it’s possible to deliver content that users want without impacting perceived performance. I’ll tie these events together with RUM data that enables the best decision for the engineering team to support the business and ultimately the customer.

Photo of Nathan Bower

Nathan Bower


Nathan Bower is a senior performance engineer coordinating performance for product development at He’s previously led performance at