Charity Majors - Systems Engineer & Cofounder of #66


Charity Majors is a former systems engineer and manager at Facebook, Parse, and Linden Lab. She is also the co-author of Database Reliability Engineering.

Charity is the co-founder and CTO of, a company dedicated to building production engineering and observability products

“With distributed systems, you don’t care about the health of the system, you care about the health of the event or the slice.”

If you are enjoying our content, click here to support us!

Episode Summary

“Our [systems engineers] expertise is around everything from performance and optimization to capacity, projections and provisioning.”

“Ops teams have a dark sense of humor. In my experience, they also tend to have the most cohesive teams out of all engineering teams. And i think its because they walk through the fire together.”

“I think that new managers need to commit to it [management] for about 2 years. That’s about how long it takes for your brain to rewire itself and learn how to build that inner voice that you can trust that tells you if you’re doing well or not.”

“I wanted to write go code for 2 years straight. That’s all I wanted to do after Facebook. Just heads down, write software!”

“Looking at the way we build software now its so painful and its so inefficient and it doesn’t have to be. The biggest obstacle I see between us as an industry and a better way is that we’ve come to believe that this is just how it is.”

—Charity Majors

“Basically in a large site with tens of thousands of servers, every day something is breaking.”

—Grant Ingersoll

Key Milestones

  1. What is production engineering and site reliability engineering?
  2. Linden Labs was one of the first large scale online games to really take off. How did this experience shape Charity’s career?
  3. How does ADHD help Charity be successful at her job? What does it mean to be high cortisol?
  4. While being introverted, Charity has consistently challenged herself to get more comfortable with social situations. She recalls why she decided to go into management.
  5. Why did Charity decide to found the company
  6. Charity attributes some of her achievements on having a “screw you” rage. What does she mean by this? Why is proving somebody wrong a strong motivator?

Additional Resources

Ep. 4 Goldman Sachs Saved My Tech Career, with Camille Fournier

What is observability and cardinality?

Learn more about -

Check out blog -

Read Charity’s blog -