April 15, 2020 • ☕️ 2 min read
You’ve probably heard the term ‘serverless’ or ‘serverless computing’ or ‘serverless architecture’.
You might have wondered what they mean. Let’s find out!
To do that, we’ll build on our fancy restaurant illustration we used here.
Say you decide to throw a party. You have a couple of options.
Option 1: Throw the party at your house
But you’ll have to arrange everything! Food, drinks, music, you also need to arrange how the food and drinks would be served! Even if you tell your friends to help, you’ll still need to coordinate everything! And hey, what if more people come and the servers (your friends) can’t meet up with the traffic? Uh-oh! You’ll need to start running around and arranging for more servers. At the end of the day, you might not enjoy your party! Sad!
Now, the ‘party’ is the app you want to deploy to the public, including your friends. So you’ve built your app and you want the world to start using it. You need servers.
If you decide to personally manage the servers (throw the party in your house) you’ll have a lot to manage. What if the servers you setup become overwhelmed cos of a lot of traffic? You’ll have to start getting more servers or scaling your servers to meet up with demand and you need to monitor all of them to make sure they don’t get tired (overwhelmed) to the point where they can’t take any more requests.
This is a lot of work.
Option 2: Throw the party at the fancy restaurant (Serverless)
What if you didn’t have to worry about all of those? Well, that’s what serverless is all about.
So the fancy restaurant (serverless provider) takes care of everything, food, drinks, servers! Everything! All you need to do is get your friends to gather at the location and everything will be taken care of.
What if there are more friends than you anticipated?
The fancy restaurant (serverless provider) automatically scales the servers to meet the demand. So you ain’t gotta worry about all of that.
You just need to focus on your party! (building your app).
Did I also mention that with serverless, you only pay for what you use? Yup, cool, right?
So serverless architecture or serverless computing or serverless for short doesn’t mean there won’t be servers. We still need servers!😁
There are many serverless providers(fancy restaurants) out there, here are a few:
I think it’s also important to mention that between throwing the party in your house and going to the fancy restaurant, (using serverless) there’s no best option for all cases.
It depends on some factors including the kind of party(app) you’re throwing (deploying).
If you need some help deciding what’s best for your situation, let’s talk on Twitter!