Off-by-none: Issue #140

May 4, 2021

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There's some new edge compute in town 🤠

Welcome to Issue #140 of Off-by-none. This issue is sponsored by our friends at Lumigo, Stackery, and Hookdeck.

Last week, Werner reflected on S3, we thought about data as a utility, and we revisited the value of hexagonal architecture. This week, AWS launches CloudFront functions, Fastly dogfoods its edge compute, and serverless helps us translate Mandalorian. Plus, we have a whole bunch of great content from the serverless community.

Webinar: Boost your serverless apps with EventBridge
Join experts from AWS and Lumigo to learn how to make the most of Amazon EventBridge with your serverless applications. The webinar is on Thu, May 6 at 10:00 AM PST / 1:00 PM ET / 18:00 CEST. Save your spot! Sponsored

Serverless News & Announcements 📣

Big AWS serverless news this week includes the announcement of CloudFront Functions, adding lightweight edge compute capability to Amazon CloudFront. Very cool stuff. Danilo Poccia outlines the details and use cases here.

In other edge computing news, Fastly shipped its first product built on Compute@Edge. They claim it’s a validation of technology and its ability to build global products faster. I’m inclined to agree.

Also, and unsurprisingly, Disney+ will be using AWS to support its global expansion strategy, bringing the service to 59 countries using a combination of 50 AWS services. So hold on everyone, The Mandalorian is coming to you soon.

In cloud security, Vectra raised $130M to fuel R&D to expand its offering into microservices. Plus, Sysdig added runtime detection and response to secure AWS Fargate serverless containers.

Microsoft is boosting its support for the Python programming ecosystem, including open-sourcing the Azure Functions runtime and the Azure Functions Python worker.

For all you Azure fans that want to run serverless Cassandra, DataStax Astra is now available in the Microsoft Azure Marketplace.

And, if you love GCP, and also love PHP, then you’ll be happy to know that Google Cloud now supports PHP on Cloud Functions.

Also, the team at Stackery just added a new feature to, their public CloudFormation audit and visualization tool. You can now link a private GitHub repo to allow secure audits of any GitHub template. Check it out at Sponsored

Serverless Stories & Use Cases 📖

Balvinder Singh shares why AWS SQS is the ultimate decoupling solution, then explains how it helped reduce image processing times by 95%. They’re still using EC2 instances, but hey, baby steps.

Davide de Paolis recounts the debugging headaches caused by Serverless offline and Sequelize. A solution may have been found, but this speaks to the challenges of serverless development workflows.

And, as someone who had to continuously click the refresh button, I appreciate Sathvik Sanagavarapu’s story of how he automated checking the availability of Covid vaccine centers using AWS Lambda and CloudWatch.

Serverless Concepts 🏗

Anna Anisienia shares 10 simple hacks that will make you super productive when using AWS, Ismail Egilmez explains various types of software bugs, and Tom Larkworthy discovers how Cloud Run changes cloud architecture.

Ibrahim Cesar has started a series that discusses the state of serverless databases in AWS. I appreciate the call out to my ServerlessDays Cardiff talk.

Jason Wadsworth has a helpful post that examines how Lambda retries and Dead Letter Queues work with different services and invocation types.

And Dylan Anthony shares a list of supported languages across serverless platforms.

Serverless Tutorials 👷‍♀️

Lizzie Siegle shows you how to translate English to Mandalorian with Twilio Serverless and SMS. It is May the Fourth after all.

Mart Noten explains a simple setup for using Amazon EventBridge with AWS Lambda.

Paolo Fusari extends his practical guide to surviving AWS SAM. This one’s all about layers.

Johan Rin shows you how to call your AWS Step Functions with API Gateway in just a few lines with SAM.

And, Cao Duy Khanh shares a tool that lets you free AWS Lambda code storage when the limit is exceeded.

Instantly & reliably manage your incoming webhooks
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Serverless Reads 🤓

If you’re hoping that building serverless apps will get easier, then take a look at Matthieu Napoli’s latest write-up on Designing Lift – serverless queues and workers .

Mike Vizard has a post that gives some more context to IBM’s new Code Engine and how it unifies cloud services to simplify application development.

Allen Helton has some Solutions Architect tips for you, identifying the 5 key factors that drive application cost.

Stéphane Bout, Philipp Hillenbrand, and Henning Soller published the article, SaaS, open source, and serverless: A winning combination to build and scale new businesses. It’s almost too obvious.

And finally, Joey Anuff wrote up a developer experience comparison of Amplify, Netlify, and Vercel for deploying Lambda functions. I found it quite insightful.

Podcasts, Videos, and more 🎧

On Serverless Chats Episode #99: You already have a Multi-Cloud Strategy, I spoke with Rob Sutter about how bottom-up adoption by developers has led to the proliferation of “cloud” inside most companies, the role third-party tooling plays in winning developer loyalty, and how the API economy inevitably leads to components distributed across cloud providers. It was a great conversation.

Marcia Villalba has another great video, this time on building synchronous workflows with AWS Step Functions and API Gateway.

And CDK Day shared a video presentation from last week’s conference explaining how Liberty Mutual scales CDK within their organization.

New from AWS 🆕

In other AWS news, the AWS Cloud Development Kit (AWS CDK) v2 and Go CDK is now available for Developer Preview, AWS Lambda@Edge now supports Node 14.x, Amazon DynamoDB local now supports the AWS SDK for Java 2.x.

AWS SAM CLI now supports AWS CDK applications, giving you the ability to directly test an AWS Lambda function from your CDK application locally, without manually synthesizing the application or passing additional options to either CLI. Interesting choice merging these two things, but I’m guessing there’s a good reason.

AWS Identity and Access Management turned 10 years old. I’m sure it will continue to confuse developers for another decade.

Moving graphs for CloudWatch Dashboards are now a thing, which is actually pretty cool.

And a few last interesting things include, AWS Distro for OpenTelemetry adding support for AWS managed Lambda Layers, Amazon ECS on AWS Fargate now allowing you to configure the size of ephemeral storage for your Tasks, and Amazon Redshift announcing the general availability of native JSON and semi-structured data support.

Upcoming Serverless Events 🗓

If you have an event, webinar, etc. that you’d like me to mention, please email me.

May 6, 2021 – Boost your serverless apps with EventBridge (Webinar)

May 11-13, 2021 – Apps On Cloud Summit (Conference)

May 12, 2021 – Intro to Serverless Computing (Workshop)

May 19, 2021 – Serverless Live (Twitch)

Serverless Star of the Week ⭐️

There is a very long list of people who are doing #ServerlessGood and contributing to the Serverless community. These people deserve recognition for their efforts. So each week, I will mention someone whose recent contribution really stood out to me. I love meeting new people, so if you know someone who deserves recognition, please nominate them.

This week’s star is Kay Plößer (@K4y1s). Kay is a developer, blogger, teacher, and the author of the book, React from Zero, a course in developing a firm foundation for building React apps. Kay creates content about software development, APIs, mobile, cloud, serverless, monitoring, and more. He teaches software development, creates blog articles, tutorials on GitHub, videos, documentation, social media strategies, and develops software. Kay, thank you for your prolific work in sharing, teaching, and developing serverless! 🙌

Final Thoughts 🤔

If you’ve made it this far, congratulations, you’ve unlocked a new serverless achievement. Well, not really, but hopefully you learned something along the way. There are some very cool things happening in the edge computing space, so something to keep your eye on.

See you next week,

I hope you enjoyed this newsletter. We’re always looking for ideas and feedback to make it better and more inclusive, so please feel free to reach out to me via Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, or email.

Previous Issue

Issue #139April 27, 2021

Next Issue

Issue #141May 11, 2021

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About the Author

Jeremy is the GM of Serverless Cloud at Serverless, Inc. and an AWS Serverless Hero that has a soft spot for helping people solve problems using serverless. He frequently consults with companies and developers transitioning away from the traditional “server-full” approach. You can find him ranting about serverless on Twitter, in several forums and Slack groups, hosting the Serverless Chats podcast, and at (virtual) conferences around the world.


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Off-by-none is committed to celebrating the diversity of the serverless community and recognizing the people who make it awesome. If you know of someone doing amazing things with serverless, please nominate them to be a Serverless Star ⭐️!