Weekly update 40

You can become a serverless blackbelt. Enrol to my 4-week online workshop Production-Ready Serverless and gain hands-on experience building something from scratch using serverless technologies. At the end of the workshop, you should have a broader view of the challenges you will face as your serverless architecture matures and expands. You should also have a firm grasp on when serverless is a good fit for your system as well as common pitfalls you need to avoid. Sign up now and get 15% discount with the code yanprs15!

Hi, welcome to another weekly update.

Learn you some Lambda best practice for great good!

I have been working hard since the last update and have published 27 lessons so far (total of ~2 hours of content). The lessons cover all areas of performance & cost optimization, scalability, security and observability. The last batch of lessons will be made available when the course officially launch on the 13th Feb. Until then, you can still enjoy the special preorder price of just £9.99 (~$13).

Enroll here.

New posts

Amazon Builders’ Library in Focus #5: static stability using availability zones. I summarised this article by AWS senior principal engineer Becky Weiss and principal engineer Mike Furr on what they mean by static stability and why each AZ should be completely independent and how it affected the design of their systems. They also discussed the importance of isolating the data-plane operations from control-plane operations.

Amazon Builders’ Library in Focus #6: implementing health checks. I summarised this article by AWS principal engineer David Yanacek on the delicate tradeoffs one have to consider when implementing a system’s health checks. It also ties into some of the concepts in #5 wrt isolating data-plane operations from control-plane operations.


I met up with Jeremy Daly at ServerlessDays Belfast and we sat down and recorded another episode for his ServerlessChats podcast series. It’s about an hour long, and you can listen to it here.


I delivered a new talk at the AWS Community Day Nordics in Stockholm this week. I talked about the essential open source tools that you should use as a serverless developer.


It’s been just over 3 weeks since I announced my European workshop tour (yup, that’s what I’m calling it now…). The group tickets for the Amsterdam workshop (March 19th-20th) has sold out, but there are still a couple of early bird tickets left.

I’m also running the workshop in Helsinki and Stockholm in May. If you need help convincing your manager to let you go, I’ve also created an email template for you to use ;-) (thanks to Jeremy Daly for the idea!)

Dear [your manager’s name],

I’d like your permission to attend this 2-day serverless workshop by Yan Cui, who is an AWS Serverless Hero and has several years of experience of actually running serverless applications in production with AWS Lambda at scale.

[insert URL of the workshop you want to attend]

The workshop is happening on [insert workshop date] in [insert workshop city]. Attending this workshop will be beneficial to both my personal growth and our company’s cloud knowledge in the following areas:

  • Boost proficiency in AWS’s serverless offerings, like AWS Lambda, API Gateway, Cognito and EventBridge.
  • Learn about the latest features of AWS Lambda such as Provisioned Concurrency and Lambda Destinations and when to use them.
  • Get educated on architectural and operational best practices on topics such as CI/CD, security, testing, logging and monitoring.
  • Gain valuable hands-on experience which I can bring back to my team and apply right away.

Here’s an estimated breakdown of costs:

Domestic flight:  [insert estimated flight cost]

Hotel (2 nights):  [insert estimated hotel cost]

Admission:  [insert ticket price for the workshop you want to attend]

Total:  [insert total]

Hope to hear from you soon and many thanks in advance.

Kind regards,

To help the community grow, I’ve also reserved a couple of diversity tickets for attendees from minority groups and students. And there’s a referral fee of €100 for every student that you refer to the workshop! Details are available on the relevant event page.

Find the nearest workshop to you here.

Thank you to my patrons

Finally, I want to give a shout out to my patrons:

Alexis, Andre Silva, Boseok In, Dome Jantaphat, Ebru Cucen, Hrafnkell Palsson, Joe Kearney, Jon Barber, Jonathan Kosgei, Kevin Woods, Luis Gutierrez, Marko @ Serverless Life, Michael Wills, Sal DiStefano, Shawn MacIntyre, Tendies123, Will Saunders, Yinan Xue

Thank you guys so much for your continued support!

Liked this article? Support me on Patreon and get direct help from me via a private Slack channel or 1-2-1 mentoring.
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Hi, I’m Yan. I’m an AWS Serverless Hero and I help companies go faster for less by adopting serverless technologies successfully.

Are you struggling with serverless or need guidance on best practices? Do you want someone to review your architecture and help you avoid costly mistakes down the line? Whatever the case, I’m here to help.

Hire me.

Skill up your serverless game with this hands-on workshop.

My 4-week Production-Ready Serverless online workshop is back!

This course takes you through building a production-ready serverless web application from testing, deployment, security, all the way through to observability. The motivation for this course is to give you hands-on experience building something with serverless technologies while giving you a broader view of the challenges you will face as the architecture matures and expands.

We will start at the basics and give you a firm introduction to Lambda and all the relevant concepts and service features (including the latest announcements in 2020). And then gradually ramping up and cover a wide array of topics such as API security, testing strategies, CI/CD, secret management, and operational best practices for monitoring and troubleshooting.

If you enrol now you can also get 15% OFF with the promo code “yanprs15”.

Enrol now and SAVE 15%.

Check out my new podcast Real-World Serverless where I talk with engineers who are building amazing things with serverless technologies and discuss the real-world use cases and challenges they face. If you’re interested in what people are actually doing with serverless and what it’s really like to be working with serverless day-to-day, then this is the podcast for you.

Check out my new course, Learn you some Lambda best practice for great good! In this course, you will learn best practices for working with AWS Lambda in terms of performance, cost, security, scalability, resilience and observability. We will also cover latest features from re:Invent 2019 such as Provisioned Concurrency and Lambda Destinations. Enrol now and start learning!

Check out my video course, Complete Guide to AWS Step Functions. In this course, we’ll cover everything you need to know to use AWS Step Functions service effectively. There is something for everyone from beginners to more advanced users looking for design patterns and best practices. Enrol now and start learning!