In control theory, observability is a measure of how well internal states of a system can be inferred from knowledge of its external outputs. 

Today, in software engineering, observability is a set of practices to understand what your systems are doing. There are three ways that are often referred too in observability. These are:

  • logging
  • metrics
  • tracing

At QCon, several talks will discuss the practices of observability and running complex distributed systems. Below are a few to watch for.

Position on the Adoption Curve

Presentations about Observability

Technical Director for Operations and Reliability @FT (Financial Times) Sarah Wells

Mature Microservices and How to Operate Them

Co-Founder @LightStepHQ & Co-Creator Dapper & @OpenTracing API Standard Ben Sigelman

Restoring Confidence in Microservices: Tracing That's More Than Traces