Off-by-none: Issue #159

October 12, 2021

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What's your serverless tail latency? ⏱

Welcome to Issue #159 of Off-by-none. This issue is sponsored by our friends at Lumigo and Courier.

Last week, Lambda added support for Graviton2, Step Functions integrated with the AWS SDK, and Cloudflare announced some radically low pricing for R2 storage. This week, Vendia stacks the deck, we learn about the importance of tail latency, and Jamstackers go all serverless. Plus, we’ve got plenty of great content from the community.

Webinar: Building a true serverless CI/CD pipeline
Join AWS Serverless Hero and Lumigo VP Engineering Efi Merdler-Kravitz as he presents Lumigo’s journey in building a 100% serverless CI/CD pipeline. Sponsored

Serverless News & Announcements 📣

It’s never a slow week for serverless, and this one’s no exception.

In AWS news, the serverless DA team shared a bunch of new serverless patterns, Alex Casalboni announced that AWS Lambda Power Tuning v4.1.0 is out with support for functions powered by Graviton2 (Arm) processors, and NoSQL Workbench for Amazon DynamoDB now enables you to import and automatically populate sample data to help build and visualize your data models.

In other cloud news, Vendia expanded its Executive Leadership Team with folks like Kevin Durdle, Randall Hunt, and Tim Zonca. What happens when you put a bunch of amazing people together? I think we’re going to find out very soon.

A new paper on Analyzing Tail Latency in Serverless Clouds with STeLLAR was recently published. Definitely interesting reading, and some great insights for serverless developers building latency-sensitive applications.

DataStax announced new capabilities of the open-source GraphQL API. Now with a single GraphQL API Call, developers can query multiple relational and NoSQL databases.

Netlify published the results of their Jamstack Community Survey 2021. Big takeaway for me was that developers reported that 46% of them are using serverless functions behind the scenes.

Forrest Brazeal is back at it with a new song on how to do digital transformation (aka The Butterfly Song).

And since we talked so much about Web 3.0 last week, here’s a piece by David Dal Busco about moving his app to DFINITY’s Internet Computer.

Serverless Stories 📖

Karol Wójcik shares a quick thread about transitioning their REST API from regular servers to AWS Lambda on ARM64 Graviton 2.

Zac Charles shows how fantastic the results are of converting a reflection-heavy Kotlin+Java Lambda function to use GraalVM.

Ekin Gün Öncü helps out a local business using the power of serverless.

And John Nguyen shares his pain with Serverless and AWS Lambda. These lines sum up my feelings nicely, “It is just not as easy as everyone praised. You still need to know what’s behind the handler, the size of the Lambda, and the computational power you need. You need to configure on many places such as YAML- file(s), AWS region, because not every region is the same, and the dependencies of your dependencies.”

Serverless Use Cases 🗺

Kay Plößer shares the (unusual?) use case of checking your NFT supply with AWS Lambda. 🤷‍♂️

Sourav Mondal shares a very cool use case that uses Amazon Rekognition to compare photos with government documents.

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Taavi Rehemägi shares some tips for Python error handling in AWS Lambda.

There’s this short article that gives you an overview of Akka Serverless, plus Thomas Schoffelen spent some time playing with Serverless Cloud.

Vivek Siva has some thoughts on handling multiple Lambda functions.

And Igor Soroka shares the five dysfunctions of serverless development. I think there’s more, but most of these hold true for me.

Serverless Tutorials 👷‍♀️

Plenty of great tutorials this week, including this one from Michael Walmsley about serverless integration with zero code. Service integrations aren’t right for everything, but they’re truly great for some.

I’m not a Laravel guy, but this post on free serverless Laravel deployments shows you how to use Vercel to deploy a Laravel project. Who knew, right?

And Johanes Glenn shows you how to deploy Laravel to CloudRun, complete with  SecretManager and LoadBalancer for custom domain mapping.

Ewerton Xavier shares a tutorial on using Python and the Serverless Framework to build a thumbnail service.

This tutorial will help you get started with the Serverless Stack (SST) Framework.

Klee Thomas explains how to write config as code for Cloudflare Workers.

And finally, several smart folks at AWS explain how to deploy multiple machine learning models for inference on AWS Lambda and Amazon EFS. 🤯

Serverless Security 🔒

I came across this post titled: ‘Serverless’: Malware Just Found a new Home. I shared some quick thoughts on Twitter, but the bottomline is that all cloud applications face the same challenges, the solutions are straightforward, and you need to learn them.

Finding great serverless security posts isn’t easy, but at least this one from Bhavesh Shah makes a few good points.

Podcasts, Videos, and more 🎧

On Serverless Chats Episode #114: Serverless for Salary Transparency, Rebecca and I chat with Kesha Williams about her 26 year journey in tech, how the cloud enabled her path to becoming an AWS Machine Learning Hero, her motivations behind building Salary Overflow, how serverless made it easier, and much more.

New from AWS 🆕

I was expecting more from AWS this week, but here are some announcements that seemed relevant. Apparently, the pre:Invent firehose isn’t open yet.

Upcoming Serverless Events 🗓

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

October 11 – 13, 2021 – Serverless Architecture Conference

October 19, 2021 – Silence of the Lambdas Webinar (had to include this because the title is so good!)

October 20, 2021 – AWS Application Modernization Day

October 21 & 22, 2021 – ServerlessDays Warsaw

October 26 – 28, 2021 – Monitoring Kubernetes vs. Serverless-based Applications at Microservices World

November 3 & 4, 2021 – CascadiaJS 2021

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 Hannah Tucker McLellan (@hannahintech). Hannah is a Junior Application Engineer at The LEGO Group, working as part of a full stack product squad. She is currently deepening her knowledge in React and GraphQL and is also continuing her serverless journey by exploring the world of AWS. Hannah also presented at ServerlessDays Virtual in 2020 about her serverless work at The LEGO Group. Thank you, Hannah, for being a part of the serverless community!

Final Thoughts 🤔

I’m incredibly excited about this week, and I’m looking forward to sharing some more big news with all of you very soon. I’ve also made the final decision to attend re:Invent in person this year. I was skeptical for awhile, but lots of people are going and I look forward to seeing all those amazing folks in person again. Let me know if you’ll be attending and we can hopefully connect.

Until 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 #158October 5, 2021

Next Issue

Issue #160October 19, 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.


Nominate a Serverless Star

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 ⭐️!