What are our re:Invent predictions? And updates!

Nov 15, 2018 · 5 min read

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Hello everyone from the snowy world of Symphonia! Yes, winter's first storm has come to New York City. Whether this is an omen for the 25000 new Amazon employees due to arrive here over the next couple of years I (Mike) wouldn't like to say…

It's been a while since we sent one of these newsletters. Despite rumors, John and I haven't been on a round-the-world motorcycle tour. Instead we've been hard at work with our clients (we hope to share more specifics on this soon), and also started work on a new book! Yes folks, we're writing a book for O'Reilly, all about running self-hosted kubernetes on-prem.

We joke, it's about Lambda, of course.

But the book part is for real.

We're nearly halfway through the first draft, and plan for it to be released some time next year. When precisely that will be is partly down to us, and partly down to whatever gifts Ajay Nair and the rest of the Lambda team give to us over the coming months that completely derail our outline.

Talking of which, it's nearly re:Invent time! John and I will both be in Vegas and would love to chat / drink / eat / compare comfortable shoes with all of our lovely readers that will also be there. Just drop us a line at johnandmike@symphonia.io if you'd like to catch up.

Our soon-to-be-debunked re:Invent predictions!

Since there are less than two weeks to go it's time for your editor to embarrass himself utterly with some re:Invent announcement predictions! It's harder to do this year since we have one of those NDA things and there are Things We Cannot Talk About, so here are some ideas I have no insider knowledge on:

  • X-Ray 2.0 . I said this last year, and I'll say it again — X-Ray needs some love. Maybe it will get it. Observability is a Big Deal these days, and Amazon are behind on this.
  • Step Functions ++ . Yet another copy-and-paste from my list from last year. Would be great to get some kind of local execution support, for example.
  • Remote Lambda Debugging support . C'mon Lambda team! You can do it!
  • More “Service Mesh” style functionality across AWS Serverless services. One thing the container folks love is all the functionality they get from service meshes — things like Istio and Linkerd . While I personally think some of that goes too far beyond the “smart endpoints and dumb pipes” principal, it would be nice to get a little more built-in support for things like circuit breakers, retries and back-off for synchronous requests, etc. within the Lambda Platform and beyond.
  • Something bonkers about Lambda@Edge that I don't have the imagination to come up with ahead of time.
  • EKS Fargate GA. This was sorta / kinda announced last year, and while both EKS and Fargate have individually advanced, the promised land of Serverlessish Kubernetes on AWS hasn't yet materialized. We hope it will be one of the banner announcements at Andy's or Werner's keynotes, presented by Abby Fuller.
  • Adding new replicas on-the-fly to DynamoDB global tables. DynamoDB global tables are Jolly Clever … but once you've set up a replica configuration with data in it you can't (yet) add new regions and have all the old data automatically sync to them. Having this support would be useful.
  • A CodePipeline boost! We're fans of CodePipeline, but we know it could do with many more features, e.g. sub-directory filtering for source triggers, in-built branch / PR support for Github (and streamlining Github support in general), and enhanced workflow — e.g. supporting multiple trigger points into different parts of the pipeline, and defining workflow in something easier than CloudFormation cough in-built step functions support cough.
  • API support for disabling / deleting sub accounts within AWS Organizations. We're big fans of using lots of sub-accounts, and creating these can be automated using the AWS Organizations SDK. Deleting them on the other hand requires a manual process, and bribes to the AWS Support team.

News from the Symphonia World

Apart from The Aforementioned Book, we've been cooking up new talks and tutorials. We'd be thrilled to come and give these at your organizations too — just send us an email.

Oh, and we became AWS Standard Partners too! So if your company likes accredited AWS consulting businesses, we're the folks for you.

Closing out

We look forward to seeing some of you at re:Invent, and for those that don't make it to the AWS-fest-in-the-desert fear not — I'll be sending another newsletter soon after the conference with our highs, lows, and of course a report on how wildly off my predictions were.

We're also open for new client engagements in the new year, so if you're looking for some folks to review how you're architecting your applications and operations in the cloud then please contact us, and we'd be more than happy to chat.

Until next time,

Mike & John

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