Serverless Picks of the Week
Issue #23: Step Function Intrisic Functions!!

Serverless Superhero

This week our serverless superhero is Sandro Volpicella, serverless engineer at Hashnode and AWS Community Builder. Sandro has a personal blog, publishes a newsletter, and even co-authored a book on AWS fundamentals. He is highly active in the community and clearly has a passion for helping others in their cloud journey. Thank you, Sandro, for helping shape the serverless community!


Brian Tarbox starts us off this week with a review of AWS Code Whisperer, letting us know if it can write better python code than you. He shows us how the service works, demonstrating how it can build entire functions from just a comment in your code. Code Whisperer is in public beta right now, so if you’re interested you can sign up to try it out.

For CDK users, Wojciech Matuszewski warns us of some pitfalls when deploying DynamoDB global tables. He tells us about some of the issues deploying a global table the traditional way versus using a different construct. Extremely valuable insight for maintainability and stability in production.

If you have S3 buckets that are used to satisfy multiple use cases, Arpad Toth wrote a must-read article. He covers S3 access points and how you can use them to scope access to a variety of use cases. He goes so far as to walk you through how you’d update your SDK calls to use access points instead of calling on buckets directly.

AppConfig is a great service for feature flags in your application. Pubudu Jayawardana published a wonderful article on how to turn off a feature flag automatically. He backs his article with a GitHub repository and a detailed explanation of how his solution works.

New Releases

In a big update for Step Functions users, there are now 14 new intrinsic functions available. These include ArrayPartition, ArrayContains, ArrayRange, ArrayGetItem, ArrayLength, ArrayUnique, Base64Encode, Base64Decode, Hash, JsonMerge, MathRandom, MathAdd, StringSplit, and UUID. This means a lot of simple Lambda functions can be removed that are doing things like simple math, generating an id, or trying to get the length of an array.


With my recent admittance to the AWS Hero program, I thought I’d share my story with you all. My career has been a series of back and forths, being a developer to a development manager back to being in a technical role as an architect. But one thing has been consistent regardless of my job title…. but you’ll have to read the story to find out 😄.

Tip of the Week

For production loads with DynamoDB, point in time recovery (PITR) is a must. Kirk Kirkconnell shares this with us:

Last Words

Thank you to everyone who has been a long time subscriber and those of you who are just joining. Cool things are coming in the near future as this grows.

If you’d like to make a recommendation for the serverless superhero or for an article you found especially useful, send me a message on Twitter, LinkedIn, or email.

Happy Coding!


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