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Posts on Engineering

The '8 Fallacies of Distributed Computing' Aren't Fallacies Anymore
Apurva Jantrania

Apurva Jantrania | October 23, 2018

The '8 Fallacies of Distributed Computing' Aren't Fallacies Anymore
In the mid 90’s, centralized ‘mainframe’ systems were in direct competition with microcomputing for dominance of the technology marketplace and developers’ time. Peter Deutsch, a Sun Microsystems engineer who was a ‘thought leader’ before we had the term, wrote seven fallacies that many developers assumed about distributed computing, to which ...
What Successful Serverless Teams Know
Nate Taggart

Nate Taggart | October 10, 2018

What Successful Serverless Teams Know
Shipping serverless applications feels good. And it should! Serverless lets us focus on our software and ignore the tedium of managing servers. You download a framework, write a little code, and deploy your first Lambda function. Congrats! You’re a serverless developer! But, as you run through that first “Hello, world” serverless tutorial, yo...
Disaster Recovery in a Serverless World - Part 2
Apurva Jantrania

Apurva Jantrania | September 17, 2018

Disaster Recovery in a Serverless World - Part 2
This is part two of a multi-part blog series. In the previous post, we covered Disaster Recovery planning when building serverless applications. In this post, we’ll discuss the systems engineering needed for an automated solution in the AWS cloud. As I started looking into implementing Stackery’s automated backup solution, my goal was simple:...
Empathy Through Observation: A User Testing Reality Check
Anna Yovandich

Anna Yovandich | September 13, 2018

Empathy Through Observation: A User Testing Reality Check
Engineers, by the nature of their work, cannot objectively experience their product like a legitimate user. While busy cranking out new features and pushing the product forward, it’s common to accrue some technical debt in the codebase. However, sprints to the finish line are likely increasing debt in an arguably more critical area: usability....
How to Write 200 Lines of YAML in 1 Minute
Anna Spysz

Anna Spysz | September 11, 2018

How to Write 200 Lines of YAML in 1 Minute
Last month, our CTO Chase wrote about why you should stop YAML engineering. I completely agree with his thesis, though for slightly different reasons. As a new developer, I’ve grasped that it’s crucial to learn and do just what you need and nothing more - at least when you’re just getting started in your career. Now, I’m all about learning fo...
Why You Should Stop YAML Engineering
Chase Douglas

Chase Douglas | August 30, 2018

Why You Should Stop YAML Engineering
Here’s some sample JavaScript code: let foo = 5; Do you know register held the value 5 when executing that code? Do you even know what a register is or what are plausible answers to the question? The correct answer to this question is: No, and I don’t care. Registers are locations in a CPU that can hold numerical values. Your computing devi...
To Do Serverless Right, You Need A New IAM Approach
Nate Taggart

Nate Taggart | April 12, 2018

To Do Serverless Right, You Need A New IAM Approach
Identity and Access Management (IAM) is an important tool for cloud infrastructure and user management. It governs access control for both cloud services and users, and can incorporate features around auditing, authentication policies, and governance. Use of IAM involves a multiple-step process of creating roles and permissions and then assigni...
Rate Limiting Serverless Apps - Two Patterns
Sam Goldstein

Sam Goldstein | November 21, 2017

Rate Limiting Serverless Apps - Two Patterns
Diagram for an automatic brake patented by Luther Adams in 1873. Many applications require rate-limiting and concurrency-control mechanisms and this is especially true when building serverless applications using FaaS components such as AWS Lambda. The scalability of serverless applications can lead them to quickly overwhelm other systems the...

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