Three videos every AWS Developer needs to watch (from ServerlessConf)

I'm certainly not a fan of Google or Microsoft when it comes to Cloud Computing, in my opinion both are very far behind the curve from where Amazon is, and they both tried jumping in a little bit too late only after Amazon proved it as a viable business model. I'm an AWS Fanboy, and proud of it.

That being said, I know that sometimes my passion for AWS can blind me to other great opportunities. My Fanboy-ness blinded me into thinking CloudSearch was a good idea (hint, it's not, use Algolia instead). It also lead me down the rabbit hole thinking I should use Cognito, instead of the much better and easier integration that Auth0 has. I like AWS for many of my production workloads, but it's actually slightly behind in some neat developer features that other cloud providers are now offering in the Serverless space.

I'm not jumping ship, however it's important for anyone in the Serverless space to get an understanding of what else is out there. There are two videos from ServerlessConf Austin that illustrate just how much Google and Microsoft love developers (and we all remember how much Microsoft loves developers right?).

Microsoft Azure Functions Keynote

Microsoft's Azure Functions are interesting, essentially they bring something like an IFTTT (If This then That) functionality but for developers. Easy drag-and-drop support to build visual pipelines of your workflows.

Of course, this is very flashy, but in practice probably not that useful without a really simple way to model it in code.

Google Firebase

Very flashy, very slick, and very simple for any developer to get started with. Of course there's a lot of hand-wavy magic, and I know for a fact that they have issues figuring out billing (I'm still occasionally charged for a service I disabled 2 years ago). That being said, this type of developer experience is something AWS really needs to strive to produce.

If AWS offered this kind of solution on top of DynamoDB and Lambda, imagine how quickly you could get apps built... For now though it might just be prototyping.

FaaS Lang with StdLib

StdLib is probably the smartest of the "competitors" to AWS Lambda. They're intelligent in that they realized their platform isn't going to be better than AWS Lambda, more scalable, or even something that last long into the distant future. What they did instead was build something on top of existing FaaS providers. Building on the success of some of the alternatives like Azure Functions and Google Cloud Functions, FaaS Lang attempts to be a standards library that will run on any existing FaaS provider. It provides a unified way to build applications that will run anywhere.

Of course, it's still yet another standard, so we'll see if anyone adopts it, but it certainly has the potential to bring competition between providers up to another level, one that simply relies on price, and not functionality.