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Serverless

Serverless architecture refers to apps that depend on third-party services or custom code.
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Go Time Go Time #282

K8s vs serverless for distributed systems

Listener Joe Davidson recently tweeted: “I’d really be interested in an episode debating Kubernetes vs serverless functions for distributed systems. As someone working a lot with serverless to create large scale systems, for me the complexity in Kubernetes doesn’t seem worth it, especially when onboarding new people. But I’d like to see it from the other perspectives. I could be missing something.”

So we invited Joe on the show alongside Abdel Sghiouar and Srdjan Petrovic to discuss!

Corey Quinn lastweekinaws.com

AWS is asleep at the Lambda wheel

Corey Quinn:

Countless volumes have been written about the various benefits of serverless, a task made even easier by it being such a squishy, nebulous term that’s come to mean basically whatever the author wants it to mean. This has been a boon for AWS’s product teams, who’ve gone from creating services that are clearly serverless such as DynamoDB, Route 53, IAM, and others to instead slapping the “serverless” moniker on things that are clearly not very serverless at all, like OpenSearch and Aurora.

Ship It! Ship It! #87

Why we switched to serverless containers

Last September, at the 🇨🇭 Swiss Cloud Native Day, Florian Forster, co-founder & CEO of ZITADEL, talked about why they switched to serverless containers. ZITADEL has a really interesting workload that is both CPU intensive and latency sensitive. On top of this, their users are global, and traffic is bursty. Florian talks about how they evaluated AWS, GCP & Azure before they settled on the platform that met their requirements.

PostgreSQL blog.replit.com

Neon is powering Replit's serverless Postgres

Yup, that Neon. Congrats to Nikita and team for this big win.

Databases and web apps go together like peanut butter and jelly. In a word, they’re inseparable. And despite all the amazing innovations in NoSQL data stores, often a good old relational database is the most reliable tool for the job.

We want to make it completely seamless to develop applications that need databases on Replit. Starting today, you can create and instantly begin to use PostgreSQL databases from within the Replit workspace.

The fine print.

Under the hood, this product is powered by our friends at Neon who have created a lightning-fast serverless database. The database will go to sleep after 5 minutes of inactivity. Most clients should handle the reconnection seamlessly.

Ruby rubyonjets.com

Ruby and Lambda had a baby and that child's name is Jets

Ruby on Jets allows you to create and deploy serverless services with ease, and to seamlessly glue AWS services together with the most beautiful dynamic language: Ruby. It includes everything you need to build an API and deploy it to AWS Lambda. Jets leverages the power of Ruby to make serverless joyful for everyone.

I’m not (yet) big on serverless things, but if I were, I’d love to run some Ruby code there.

Ship It! Ship It! #83

🎄 Planning for failure to ship faster 🎁

Eight months ago, in 🎧 episode 49, Alex Sims (Solutions Architect & Senior Software Engineer at James & James) shared with us his ambition to help migrate a monolithic PHP app running on AWS EC2 to a more modern architecture. The idea was some serverless, some EKS, and many incremental improvements.

So how did all of this work out in practice? How did the improved system cope with the Black Friday peak, as well as all the following Christmas orders? Thank you Alex for sharing with us your Ship It! inspired Kaizen story. It’s a wonderful Christmas present! 🎄🎁

Changelog Interviews Changelog Interviews #510

Taking Postgres serverless

This week we’re talking about serverless Postgres! We’re joined by Nikita Shamgunov, co-founder and CEO of Neon. With Neon, truly serverless PostgreSQL is finally here. Neon isn’t Postgres compatible…it actually is Postgres! Neon is also open source under the Apache License 2.0.

We talk about what a cloud native serverless Postgres looks like, why developers want Postgres and why of the top 5 databases only Postgres is growing (according to DB-Engines Ranking), we talk about how they separated storage and compute to offer autoscaling, branching, and bottomless storage, we also talk about their focus on DX — where they’re getting it right and where they need to improve. Neon is invite only as of the recording and release of this episode, but near the end of the show Nikita shares a few ways to get an invite and early access.

Jerod Santo changelog.com/posts

SQLite's web renaissance

I won’t call SQLite’s current moment a comeback, because the most used database engine in the world doesn’t have anything to come back from. I’m going with “renaissance”, because despite its already mass adoption, there has been something of a rebirth of interest from one software sector that had previously relegated it to dev & test environments: web apps

PostgreSQL github.com

An open source alternative to AWS Aurora

When we had Paul Copplestone from Supabase on The Changelog I asked him what a cloud native Postgres would look like. He replied,

Decoupled compute and storage. So the idea is that you should be able to attach the compute part of it to a storage, hopefully like an infinite storage; you know, anything that is infinitely scalable. If you can do this, and in particular, if the compute can start up very fast, maybe in, say, a hundred milliseconds via some sort of HTTP response, then that’s cloud native, yeah.

Enter Neon, which sells itself as:

The multi-cloud fully managed Postgres with a generous free tier. We separated storage and compute to offer autoscaling, branching, and bottomless storage.

Behind this new business from MemSQL co-founder Nikita Shamgunov is the linked (Apache-licensed) server written in Rust.

Ship It! Ship It! #49

Improving an eCommerce fulfillment platform

Alex Sims, a Senior Software Engineer at James & James, an eCommerce fulfilment company, reached out to us about the Kaizen story of the third-party logistics (3PL) platform that he has been involved with for several years now.

The system delivered 16 millions of orders in 10 years, and 4.5 million in the last year alone. All the numbers are going up, and there is only so much that a single PHP monolith deployed as VM images can handle. So how do you even start thinking about the architectural improvements, and inspire everyone involved to move towards better?

We encourage you to look at the architectural diagrams in the show notes, especially the 10 year roadmap, and ask Alex for a blog post follow-up. While today’s episode was a good conversation starter, there is a lot that we did not have time to cover.

Founders Talk Founders Talk #85

Making the last database you’ll ever need

This week Adam is joined by Sam Lambert, CEO of PlanetScale. Now that PlanetScale is in general availability, Adam had to get Sam on the show to talk about the behind the scenes of building this database platform, how this is the last database you’ll ever need and what that means for developers, why serverless, its open source underpinnings with Vitess, and a preview of what’s to come.

Rust github.com

An open source alternative to Cloudflare Workers

Blueboat aims to be a developer-friendly, multi-tenant platform for serverless web applications. A monolithic approach is followed: we try to implement features of commonly used libraries (in the web application context) natively in Rust to replace native Node addons, improve performance and reduce duplicated code. Blueboat’s architecture ensures the security of the platform, prevents code duplication and keeps the overhead low.

CockroachDB cockroachlabs.com

How CockroachDB went serverless

This is a great post byu Andy Kimball on what they mean when they say CockroachDB is now serverless:

Serverless means you don’t have to think about servers. Of course there are servers hard at work handling your application’s requests, but that’s our problem, not yours. We do all the hard work behind the scenes of allocating, configuring, and maintaining the servers. Instead of paying for servers, you pay for the requests that your application makes to the database and the storage that your data consumes.

How they got here:

Before now, a single physical CockroachDB cluster was intended for dedicated use by a single user or organization. That is called single-tenancy. Over the past several CockroachDB releases, we’ve quietly been adding multi-tenancy support…

How they scale it:

Within every Serverless cluster, there is an autoscaler component that is responsible for determining the ideal number of SQL pods that should be assigned to each tenant, whether that be one, many, or zero.

And what it all means for Cockroach’s users.

JavaScript github.com

A first-party, fully-local simulator for Cloudflare Workers

Local development of remote/cloud functions has been various levels of painful ever since the computing trend started its rise, so it makes a lot of sense why Cloudflare would invest in easing that pain. Now they get to say developing with Cloudflare Workers is:

  • 🎉 Fun: develop workers easily with detailed logging, file watching and pretty error pages supporting source maps.
  • 🔋 Full-featured: supports most Workers features, including KV, Durable Objects, WebSockets, modules and more.
  • Fully-local: test and develop Workers without an internet connection. Reload code on change quickly.

Ryan Dahl deno.com

Deno Deploy Beta 2

Big news from Deno today.

Today we are releasing Deploy Beta 2. This is the second in a series of beta releases that will be made over the coming months. Each release will add features and refine the programming model. The releases will culminate in a General Availability announcement that we estimate will happen in Q4 2021.

Over the past eight months, we have been quietly designing this hosted service to supplement workflows with the open source Deno CLI. Deploy does not run on AWS Lambda nor does it use Cloudflare Workers; this is a new system with a unique design. We encourage people to look past the rough initial UI and explore this new JavaScript runtime.

What’s next: A general availability (GA) release is expected Q4 2021.

Ship It! Ship It! #13

A monorepo of serverless microservices

In this episode, Gerhard talks to his Skyhook Adventure friends: Alan Cooney, Saul Cullen & Wycliffe Maina. They are the ones that introduced Gerhard to the world of serverless in the context of Amazon Web Services. Gerhard shared his experience with remote work, how to ship software with confidence and consistency, and what to look for in infrastructure as code.

At the heart of Skyhook Adventure are adventure trips, and 2020 was not a good one for this business. As you can already tell, code and infrastructure was not the biggest challenge for this team. Having said that, serverless, microservices, a monorepo and the event-based architecture played a big part in successfully navigating the challenges.

This is a story about what happens when a good team allows itself to be guided by solid experience and keeps doing the right thing, long-term. It’s fun, real, and it applies to many.

Alex Ellis blog.alexellis.io

My first eBook - results & feedback from "Serverless For Everyone Else"

Alex Ellis:

I wanted to write to you all and share that I’ve launched my first eBook called “Serverless For Everyone Else” - within the first three hours of launch, nobody bought a single copy and I thought that I’d got it all wrong.

Alex digs into the gritty details of why he wrote the book and what happened after his initial failure. And since Alex is super nerdy like you and me, the post is filled with fun moments like this one:

How did I fulfil the upgrade / discount? I did it by writing a function and deploying it to my Raspberry Pi, so that Gumroad would send a webhook, my code would query the dollar amount, and then send out an email to the customer over AWS SES.

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