Peak load, and burst-y traffic are problem spaces which are often (and tragically) confused for each other, invariably to the detriment of both ops and users. While peak-load is all about capacity management, in a burst-y situation, you might have to prioritize - or even drop! - requests. Knowing which requests to process, and how to actually process them is the world of Active Queue Management (AQM). While AQM has long been exclusively in the domain of the TCP/IP crowd, it has been slowly making its way into the world of cloud-services, albeit with much (faulty!) wheel-reinventing.
Join me as I take you through the world of Active Queue Management, back-pressure, load-ramping, and tactical avoidance, things that most people should be architecting into their services, but aren't.