Migration of a realtime stats product from Storm to Flink

Counting things might sound like a trivial thing to do. But counting things consistently at scale can create unique and difficult challenges. At ResearchGate we count things for different reasons. On the one hand we provide numbers to our members to give them insights about their scientific impact and reach. At the same time, we use numbers ourselves as a basis for data-driven product development. We continuously tune our statistics infrastructure to improve our platform, adapt to new business requirements or fix bugs. A milestone in this improvement process has been the strategic decision to move our stats infrastructure from Storm to Flink. This significantly reduced complexity and required resources, including decreasing the load on our database backend by more than 30%. We will discuss the challenges we’ve encountered and overcome on the way, including handling of state and the need for online and offline processing using streaming and batch processors on the same data.

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