ShimmerCat web server
ShimmerCat is a specially optimized HTTP/2 web-server. ShimmerCat is a Haskell program where some of the low-level, CPU intensive functions have been offloaded to C code. Haskell’s GHC runtime offers a massively parallel runtime and evented I/O masked as user-space threads. The Haskell programming language is functional and pure, which reduces chances for data corruption and security breaches. ShimmerCat’s I/O is completely event-based, just as for example nginx’s is.
Our goal with ShimmerCat is to enhance website loading speed, both via built-in technologies and – specially– in cooperation with our data-analysis and rule creation SaaS service. We call the combination of the two things the “Edge Accelerator Network”.
As a side effect, ShimmerCat supports web traffic analysis and modern telemetry. ShimmerCat also delivers a semantic URL rewrite engine and a verifier for HTTP headers. These two components help protect your site against intruders.
When embedded in the Edge Accelerator Network distribution (we just call it “sc_pack”), it connects to our SaaS service to download site-specific optimization rules covering automatic HTTP/2 Push, bot protection, image prioritization and image optimization.
ShimmerCat can be used as a standalone “Product License” (as in “disconnected from the SaaS service and not embedded in our Edge Accelerator Network distribution”) web server and as a development tool. The standalone version of ShimmerCat can be downloaded from here.
ShimmerCat is the result of several iterations at building an HTTP/2 server that can handle explicit request/response priorities and HTTP/2 Push. By setting explicit asset priorities and doing HTTP/2 Push when required, we can ensure that the browsers used by visitors of your website get the important files first. This usually results in an improvement on loading speed between 20 and 60%, which in turns increases website conversions and sales.