Pinterest is a very visually-oriented social media platform that is used for sharing information about everything from home construction projects to recipes to pictures of beaches and other interesting stuff.
Like other hugely popular social media platforms that are designed to support millions of users, Pinterest is designed to efficiently deliver highly visual content and
If you’ve ever been interested in knowing what technology stack is used by Pinterest to accomplish what they do, StackShare provides that information. I have embedded their representation of the Pinterest tech stack below.
Highlights of Pinterest Technology Stack
Web Server: Pinterest uses Nginx as its web server.
Cloud Storage and Hosting: Pinterest uses Amazon S3 and EC2 instances for storing information and running its Nginx web servers.
DevOps: Pinterest resources operate in a Docker infrastructure.
The following graphic from StackShare shows a comprehensive list of what technologies Pinterest uses to operate its platform as well as to organize its team, which consists of over 3,000 employees.
Below the graphics here that represent the various aspects of the Pinterest tech stack, we have included brief descriptions of each of these pieces of the tech stack within the context of how Pinterest uses them in their social media platform.
Pinterest Application and Data
Python is the primary programming language used in Pinterest’s tech stack. It is employed for backend development, data processing, machine learning, and infrastructure management. Python’s simplicity, extensive libraries, and strong community support make it an ideal choice for building and scaling the Pinterest platform.
Java is a popular programming language that Pinterest uses for various purposes, such as backend services, large-scale data processing, and maintaining high-performance systems. Java’s robustness, scalability, and wide ecosystem of libraries and tools make it suitable for handling the demanding requirements of Pinterest’s infrastructure.
MySQL is an open-source relational database management system (RDBMS) used by Pinterest for storing structured data. It provides efficient data storage, retrieval, and management capabilities. Pinterest relies on MySQL to handle tasks like user data storage, metadata management, and other structured data requirements.
NGINX is a high-performance web server and reverse proxy used by Pinterest to handle incoming web requests efficiently. NGINX acts as a load balancer, caching server, and SSL terminator, ensuring fast and secure delivery of Pinterest’s web content to users.
Redis is an in-memory data structure store used by Pinterest as a caching layer and for real-time data processing. Pinterest leverages Redis to improve the performance of frequently accessed data and to support high-speed data processing and analysis.
Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service) is a scalable cloud storage service provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS). Pinterest uses Amazon S3 to store and retrieve large amounts of data, including images, videos, and user-uploaded content. S3’s durability, scalability, and easy integration with other AWS services make it a reliable storage solution for Pinterest.
Amazon EC2 (Elastic Compute Cloud) is a web service by AWS that provides resizable compute capacity in the cloud. Pinterest utilizes EC2 to run its application servers, allowing for flexible scaling and efficient resource allocation based on demand.
Django is a high-level Python web framework used by Pinterest for rapid and efficient web application development. Pinterest relies on Django’s robust features, including an ORM (Object-Relational Mapping) for database interactions, built-in authentication, and request handling, to build scalable and maintainable backend services.
Golang (Go) is a programming language developed by Google known for its simplicity, efficiency, and concurrency support. Pinterest incorporates Golang in its tech stack for specific use cases where performance and scalability are critical, such as building high-throughput services and microservices.
Objective-C is a programming language primarily used for iOS and macOS app development. Pinterest utilizes Objective-C to build and maintain its native iOS app, providing a seamless and optimized experience for iOS users.
Memcached is a widely used distributed memory caching system that Pinterest employs for caching frequently accessed data. By storing data in memory, Memcached reduces the load on backend systems, improves response times, and enhances overall system performance.
Amazon SQS (Simple Queue Service) is a fully managed message queuing service provided by AWS. Pinterest utilizes SQS for asynchronous message passing between different components and services within its architecture. SQS ensures reliable and scalable communication, decoupling various parts of Pinterest’s systems.
Hadoop is an open-source framework that enables distributed processing of large datasets across clusters of computers. Pinterest utilizes Hadoop for big data processing and analytics tasks, such as log analysis, data mining, and batch processing. Hadoop’s MapReduce programming model and distributed file system (HDFS) are instrumental in handling Pinterest’s massive amounts of data.
HBase is a distributed, scalable, and consistent NoSQL database built on top of Hadoop. Pinterest employs HBase to store and manage large volumes of semi-structured data, such as user interactions and analytics data. HBase’s ability to handle high read and write throughput makes it suitable for Pinterest’s data-intensive workloads.
EdgeCast, now known as Verizon Digital Media Services, is a content delivery network used by Pinterest to enhance the performance and availability of its web content. EdgeCast’s global network of edge servers helps deliver Pinterest’s content to users with low latency and high throughput.
Qubole is a cloud-native data platform that provides managed services for big data processing and analytics. Pinterest utilizes Qubole for tasks like data warehousing, ad hoc analytics, and machine learning workflows. Qubole simplifies data processing and provides a unified interface for various big data tools like Hadoop, Spark, and Presto.
mysql_utils is a Python library developed at Pinterest to simplify common tasks related to MySQL database management. It provides utilities for executing SQL queries, managing connections, performing backups, and automating common administrative tasks in a MySQL environment.
Amazon Route 53
Amazon Route 53 is a scalable domain name system (DNS) web service provided by AWS. Pinterest uses Route 53 for domain registration, DNS routing, and health checking, ensuring reliable and performant access to Pinterest’s web services.
SparkPost is a cloud-based email delivery service that Pinterest utilizes for sending transactional and marketing emails to its users. SparkPost provides robust email infrastructure and delivery capabilities, helping Pinterest ensure that important notifications and communications reach their intended recipients.
BitBar is a utility that allows creating custom status bar menu items for macOS. Pinterest employs BitBar to display and monitor various system and application metrics, providing real-time insights into the health and performance of their systems.
Docker is a containerization platform used by Pinterest for packaging and deploying applications and services. Pinterest utilizes Docker to create lightweight and portable containers that encapsulate their dependencies, making it easier to deploy and manage applications across different environments.
Webpack is a popular module bundler used by Pinterest to manage and optimize the front-end assets of its web applications. Webpack handles tasks such as code bundling, asset optimization, and module resolution, contributing to efficient and performant web application delivery.
Xcode is an integrated development environment (IDE) provided by Apple for building iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS applications. Pinterest uses Xcode to develop and maintain its native applications for Apple platforms, ensuring compatibility and adherence to Apple’s development guidelines.
Varnish is a web application accelerator and caching HTTP reverse proxy used by Pinterest to improve the performance and scalability of its web services. Varnish caches and serves frequently accessed content, reducing the load on backend systems and improving response times.
Pingdom is a website monitoring service utilized by Pinterest to monitor the availability and performance of its web applications and services. Pingdom performs regular checks and alerts Pinterest in case of any downtime or performance issues, helping ensure a reliable user experience.
Zookeeper is a distributed coordination service used by Pinterest for maintaining configuration information, naming, and providing distributed synchronization. Pinterest utilizes Zookeeper to ensure consistency and coordination among various components and services within its architecture.
Crittercism, now known as Apteligent, is a mobile application performance monitoring (APM) and crash reporting platform. Pinterest integrates Crittercism into its mobile apps to monitor app performance, track crashes, and gain insights into user experience, allowing for timely bug fixes and performance improvements.
Teletraan is a deployment management and automation system developed at Pinterest. It provides capabilities for managing the deployment lifecycle, rollbacks, and monitoring of services. Pinterest utilizes Teletraan to streamline the deployment process and ensure reliable and efficient application updates.
Pinterest Business Tools
Slack is a collaboration and communication platform used by Pinterest for team communication, project management, and coordination. Pinterest leverages Slack to facilitate real-time communication, organize discussions, and enhance collaboration among its teams.
Jira is a project management and issue tracking tool used by Pinterest to manage and track development projects, tasks, and bug fixes. Jira provides a centralized platform for organizing work, assigning tasks, and tracking progress across teams and projects.
G Suite, now known as Google Workspace, is a suite of cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools offered by Google. Pinterest utilizes G Suite for email, document collaboration, file sharing, and other business-related tasks, enhancing productivity and enabling efficient collaboration among its employees.
Asana is a project management and collaboration tool used by Pinterest to organize and manage projects, tasks, and workflows. Pinterest leverages Asana to track progress, assign responsibilities, and ensure effective project coordination across teams.
Zendesk is a customer service and support platform employed by Pinterest to handle user inquiries, feedback, and support requests. Pinterest integrates Zendesk into its customer support workflows, providing efficient and timely assistance to its users.
OneLogin is a cloud-based identity and access management (IAM) solution used by Pinterest for user authentication and access control. OneLogin helps ensure secure and streamlined access to Pinterest’s internal systems and applications, enhancing security and user experience.
AnyPerk, now known as Fond, is an employee rewards and recognition platform utilized by Pinterest to provide perks and benefits to its employees. AnyPerk offers a range of employee rewards, including discounts, gifts, and recognition programs, contributing to employee satisfaction and engagement.
GrexIt is a collaboration and email management tool that integrates with Gmail. Pinterest uses GrexIt to enhance email productivity and collaboration, allowing users to share and collaborate on emails, track conversations, and delegate tasks within Gmail.