TALK: "New HotN+1ness - Hard lessons migrating from REST to GraphQL"

This is a past event

24 people went

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Can't go to RailsConf this year, or going, but feel like there are too many talks you want to see?

We're here to help with another RailsConf preview talk!

This time, Dubuque Rails-er EJ will be presenting about his experience moving from REST to GraphQL, and the heartache (and triumph) along the way.

A huge thanks to Zendesk ( for hosting us and sponsoring food and drink!


Feel free to arrive anytime between 5:30 and 6pm; EJ's talk will begin at 6pm.


"Our desire to use new tools and learn new technologies backfires when we don't take the time to fully understand them.

In 2018, we migrated from a REST API to GraphQL. Patterns were introduced, copied, pasted, and one day we woke up with queries taking 6s and page load times > 10s. Customers were complaining. How did we get here?

In this talk, we will discuss why we chose GraphQL, show practical examples of the mistakes we made in our implementation, and demonstrate how we eliminated all N+1 queries.

I'll answer the question, 'If I knew then what I know now... Would I stick with a REST API?'"


Eric took the scenic route to software. After careers in Finance, Sales, Analytics & Marketing, he turned his passion for building things towards code and never looked back. EJ has consulted for thougtbot & Pivotal Labs and currently works for CirrusMD, a HIPAA-compliant medical chat platform focused on providing patients with barrier-free access to an unparalleled virtual care experience. Eric spends most of his non-coding hours experimenting in the kitchen or playing with his new son Arthur.


Zendesk is located in downtown Madison, so if you're driving, plan early for parking. There's street parking and multiple public parking garages (Dane County Parking Ramp, Overture Center Garage and Government East Garage).

The building is located right by the W. Main and S. Carroll stop, which services the following bus lines:

#1 to #8, #11, #12, #14, #15, #19, #25, #27, #29, #37, #38, #47, #56, #57, #58, #70 to 72 and #75


Zendesk's building is accessible, and has accessible bathrooms. While we won't have activities specifically for children, they're always welcome.