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Category: serverless

What are Durable Functions?

Oh no! Not more jargon! What exactly does the term Durable Functions mean? Durable functions have to do with Serverless architectures. It’s an extension of Azure Functions that allow you to write stateful executions in a serverless environment. Think of it this way. There are a few big benefits that people tend to focus on when they talk about Serverless Functions: They’re cheap They scale with your needs (not necessarily, but that’s the default for many services) They allow you to write event-driven code Let’s talk about that last one for a minute. When you can write event-driven code, you can break your operational needs down into smaller functions that essentially say: when this request comes in, run this code. You don’t mess around with infrastructure, that’s taken care of for you. It’s a pretty compelling concept. In this paradigm, you can break your workflow down into smaller, reusable pieces which, in turn, can make them easier to maintain. This also allows you to focus on your business logic because you’re boiling things down to the simplest code you need run on your server. So, here’s where Durable Functions come in. You can probably guess that you’re going to need more than one function to run as your application grows in size and has to maintain more states. And, in many cases, you’ll need to coordinate them and specify...

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PSA: Yes, Serverless Still Involves Servers.

You clever dog. You’ve rooted it out! It turns out when you build things with serverless technology you’re still using servers. Pardon the patronizing tone there, I’ve seen one-too-many hot takes at this point where someone points this fact out and trots away triumphantly. And yes, because serverless still involves servers, the term might be a bit disingenuous to some. You could be forgiven for thinking that serverless meant technologies like web workers, which use the client to do things you might have otherwise done on a server and is where the term serverless was headed. Alas, it is not. What serverless really means: Using other people’s servers instead of running your own. You’re probably already doing that, but serverless takes it to another level where you have no control over the server outside of telling it to run a bit of code. You don’t need to think about scaling — that’s the serverless provider’s problem. You are only paying per execution of your code and not some fixed cost per time. You only worry about your code being misused, but not the security of the server itself. We’re mostly talking about Cloud Functions above, but I’d argue the serverless movement involves anything that allows you to work from static hosting and leverage services to help you with functionality. For example, even putting a Google Form on a static...

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Versioning Interview

Adam Roberts (who you might recognize from our interview with him), interviewed me for the Versioning newsletter. I’m publishing my answers here for y’alls perusal as well! Which dev/tech idea or trend excites you the most at the moment, and why? I love that new JavaScript has arrived. I don’t know if “new JavaScript” is really the word for it, but that’s what it feels like. Major syntax improvements coupled with state and component-based thinking, coupled with powerful frameworks tying it all together: React, Angular, Vue, Ember, etc. Plus the ecosystem they live in, which often includes ES6+ processing, building/bundling, state management tools, and more. Particularly impressive are tools like Create React App that get you cooking on a whole fancy setup like that in seconds. Vue CLI is similarly amazing. Combined with serverless / JAMstack stuff, I love it all the more. This stuff is so thick in the air right now it’s definitely not going away, like it or not. It will evolve, but this whole thing that I call New JavaScript (for lack of a better overall term) is gonna be around for a hot while. Which dev/tech idea or trend is overrated, and why? I’d hate to crap on any particular idea. For one, I’m not sure it does anybody any good. But also, I’m so often wrong about stuff like this. It reminds me...

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Build Nodejs APIs Using Serverless

Simona Cotin did a great talk at Microsoft Build about Serverless technologies, called “Build Node APIs Using Serverless.” In this talk, she addresses pretty much every major gotcha that you might run into while creating Serverless infrastructure for JavaScript applications. Some of the topics included, but are not limited to: CORS Local Debugging with VS Code Installing npm packages Configuring REST-like URLs Saving environment variables All in all, it’s one of the best talks on Serverless I’ve seen, and if you’re interested in this topic, then I highly suggest giving it a watch. Direct Link to Article — Permalink The post Build Nodejs APIs Using Serverless appeared first on CSS-Tricks....

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Displaying the Weather With Serverless and Colors

I like to jog. Sometimes it’s cold out. Sometimes it’s cold out, but it looks like it isn’t. The sun is shining, the birds are chirping. Then you step outside in shorts and a t-shirt and realize you have roughly 2 minutes before exposure sets in. I decided to solve this first world problem using a lightbulb to display a certain color based on what the temperature outside is. It works better than I expected, and that’s saying something because usually nothing works out like I want it to. This was a fun project to build, and since it...

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