Heroku is a cloud-based development platform as a service (PaaS) provider. The Heroku platform supports development in Ruby on Rails, Java, Node.js, Python, Scala and Clojure.

Originally, Heroku supported only Ruby on Rails. In 2010, the company reported that it supported a million Ruby developers writing and running apps directly on Amazon Web Services (AWS). Heroku maintains the development environment and integrates other cloud services. The company partnered with Facebook to allow developers with Heroku accounts to create and deploy Web apps quickly and easily through a Facebook interface.

Heroku was founded in 2007 by James Lindenbaum, Adam Wiggins, and Orion Henry. The name “Heroku” was created as a portmanteau of the words “hero” and “haiku.” Heroku was acquired by Salesforce.com in 2010. Company headquarters are in San Francisco.

This was last updated in June 2012
Posted by: Margaret Rouse
View the next item in this Essential Guide: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) or view the full guide: Platform as a Service: Expert advice for selecting a PaaS vendor

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