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Creating Chaos

Overview

The Equal Experts Chaos Day Playbook is a distillation of our thinking on how best to run a Chaos Day. It draws from our experience of running many Chaos Days across a diverse set of clients, ranging from large public-sector departments to private-sector retail organisations. We have open-sourced this under a Creative Commons license and encourage contributions to iteratively improve our content.

We are producing this playbook in stages. This stage provides a 5-minute guide to running a Chaos Day, for those keen to get started straight away, plus more in depth content on:

  1. What a Chaos Day is and why they are beneficial
  2. When is the right time to run one

Further content will be released later that goes into more depth on how to run a Chaos Day.

Who’s this playbook for?

We’ve created this playbook for teams and organisations to design, plan, execute and review a Chaos Day. It’s not just for engineers; it is for everyone involved in delivering software. Product owners can learn more about the risks and impacts of failure, testers can learn how to explore edge cases and test for resilience and designers can benefit from a greater understanding of the user experience of failure and how to design interfaces that are adaptable.

This playbook is for any organisation, regardless of their tech stack or maturity. You don’t have to use containers, Kubernetes, or be in AWS, GCP, Azure or any other cloud platform to gain the benefits of probing your system’s robustness.

Related playbooks

We’ve written other playbooks that compliment this one well:

  • Chaos Days are great opportunities to run experiments that explore security threats. For a distillation of our thinking on how best to apply security within continuous delivery, look at our Secure Delivery Playbook.
  • Chaos Days can be run with colocated and distributed teams alike. If some of your team is remote, our Remote Working Playbook might be of interest.
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