New features in LibPixel

Published on

We aim to make LibPixel the most effective, fastest, and easiest to use cloud image processing service.

So we're continually adding features that our customers need, and improving our infrastructure.

Compression

Recently we added additional image compression features when using JPEGs. It's important for the speed and performance of your web pages to serve the smallest pictures possible, whilst retaining maximum fidelity. To this end, we are now generating optimized Huffman tables which result in no decrease in quality, but decrease the output file size. We have enabled this by default for all customers, so there's nothing you need to do to. The savings in the delivered images can be as much as 30% for a blurred image without any loss of quality. As a result your pages load faster, use less data, and rank better on Google.

normal image (11kB)
improved compression (9.5kB)

Infrastructure

As for infrastructure, you may have heard that Amazon suffered a severe outage in the US East region on the 20th September. But LibPixel was unaffected even though that is our primary region, which hosts the majority of our services.

How?

We run image processing on two AWS regions at the moment (the other one being eu-west-1), which means we can – and did – automatically fail over to another region in case an entire AWS region goes down. As the failover is automated, it occurs in less than 60 seconds, and only affects new images being processed, not those already cached by our CDN.

We ensure that critical services (image processing and serving) have the highest level of availability with automatic failover in place.

Rails plugin

Ruby on Rails is still one of the simplest to use and fastest frameworks to develop in. So why not make it as easy as possible to integrate with LibPixel?

We have now added a Rails plugin component to our Libpixel Ruby Gem. This adds a view helper that allows you to create image tags that automatically use your LibPixel account.

It's very simple to change your view code to use LibPixel. A tag like the following:

<%= image_tag("something.jpg", size: "100x200") %>

would be changed as follows to take advantage of LibPixel:

<%= libpixel_image_tag("something.jpg", libpixel: {width: 100}, size: "100x200") %>

Any LibPixel parameters can be specified in the hash, so you can easily use resized and processed images in your Rails apps.


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