Serverless Picks of the Week
Issue #58: WebSockets, Migration Tactics, and Serverless Observability

Serverless Superhero

Our serverless superhero this week is Jonah Andersson, author, podcast host, and Microsoft MVP. Jonah is an inspiring woman with a genuine passion for teaching the community and helping beginners. She regularly gives talks on serverless and modern cloud development and has made it a priority in her life to engage with the community. Thank you Jonah, for being a wonderful human and bringing your expertise to the community!

Interesting Reads

Marcia Villalba posted a really informative video last week on how to migrate data to DynamoDB. She doesn’t walk through code, but she talks at length about the options you have and all the things you need to consider when doing a migration of a live system. Wish I saw this one years ago!

Speaking of database migrations, Pubudu Jayawardana gave us a working code sample of using a distributed map in Step Functions to load data from S3 to Postgres. He walks us through all the prerequisites, set up, and dives into the code in this great practical example.

I’ve been noticing the complexity of Lambda functions being shared around the internet has been going up. Every now and then we need to take a step back and remember the roots of serverless development. So I published an article posing the question “are we making Lambda too hard” as a reminder to keep it simple. I take an extreme stance in the article and as a result, we’ve gotten some incredible conversation on Twitter on the topic.

Michael Liendo posted the coolest thing I’ve seen in a long time. He converted his Apple Keynote presentation into a webpage and put a WebSocket in front of it so audience members could react to his content. This is HUGE for engagement, which is arguably the hardest part of any presentation. His article walks through how he did it and offers up the source code so you can do it yourself. Wonderful idea and fantastic implementation!

I put a heavy emphasis on automation around everything I do with Ready, Set, Cloud. Out of necessity, I’ve built tooling and processes to help keep content streamlined and take repetitive work off my plate so I can continue delivering content week over week. I joined Julian Wood on Serverless Office Hours last week to talk about how I’ve built the automations and grown from a personal blog on Medium to my own site that hosts a blog, newsletter, podcast, and fitness app.


I sit with Alex Debrie to talk about how he wrote the DynamoDB book on the Ready, Set, Cloud podcast. We talk about his creative process, what his motivation was for writing it, the ups and downs of book writing, and discuss possibilities for his next book.

Luca Mezzalira chats with Yan Cui on the Real-World Serverless podcast about micro-frontends. They also talk about styling multiple micro-frontends consistently, managing shared state, and CI pipelines.

Eoin Shanaghy and Luciano Mammino talk about functionless APIs in the latest episode of AWS Bites. They give the pros and cons of directly integrating services to API Gateway, talk about VTL, and walk through a few use cases.


I’m a big advocate of iteration. I always say do it, do it right, do it better. So when I saw that Prime Video moved from serverless to container-based monolith I was intrigued. Their do it phase was to solve the business problem as quickly as possible - which meant using Lambda and Step Functions. After the initial build, metrics started trickling in that led them to the decision to do it right with a horizontally scalable ECS solution. This is a great reminder that not all workloads make sense with a distributed serverless system. My takeaway here is that the Prime video team was smart and agile enough to back away from an architecture that exceeded budgets and service limits instead of trying to work around it.

Tip of the Week

If you haven’t been following along, Michael Walmsley has been on a roll with serverless observability. He reminded us last week that how you log matters just as much as what you log.

Last Words

Videos are starting to pop up from the many conferences going on around the world. I’ll do my best to link to them as they are available, but if you see one that I missed, please let me know!

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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