Year in review, 2023

Yan Cui

I help clients go faster for less using serverless technologies.

This article is brought to you by

Is your CI build step taking too long? Try Depot for free today and experience up to 40x faster build speed!

Unlock faster CI for FREE

2023 has been a bittersweet year.

It started with unpleasant medical news and the subsequent surgeries. The silver lining is that I did enjoy the medical leave and perhaps didn’t realise how much I needed that break!

Despite several months of medical leave, I still had a productive 2023.

  • 13 public speaking engagements
  • 8 public workshops
  • 2459 new students enrolled in my courses
  • 39 blog posts
  • 417,900 blog visitors
  • 51 YouTube videos
  • 4,225 hours of YouTube watch time
  • 23 podcast episodes
  • 5,434,000 Twitter impressions
  • 4,818,287 LinkedIn impressions

Most read blog posts

Most watched YouTube videos

Hitting YouTube milestones

YouTube became a focus of my content pipeline in the 2nd half of 2023, as you can see from the chart below.

Admittedly, my content and thumbnail are still all over the place… but I’m learning and I’m starting to find my style.

If you happen to like my videos then subscribe to my channel and let’s grow together in 2024.

Most listened-to podcast episodes

My favourite podcast episode

I really enjoyed my conversation with Charity Majors. She was very candid and generous with sharing her time and her views on a whole range of different topics – from DevOps, to career development and AI. I always learn something when I listen to Charity, and it was an honour to finally speak with her on my podcast!

My favourite webinar

Overcoming the Challenges of Building High-Performance Systems. I had a blast speaking with Khawaja Shams (CTO of Momento) and Aviad Mor (CTO of Lumigo) in this session. Both Khawaja and Aviad are experienced engineers who have built large, scalable systems and it was great learning from them both.

My favourite workshop questions

I worked with over 200 workshop students in 2023 and received many great questions along the way. So I want to say thank you to everyone who took part in the workshops and thanks for all your questions!

Here are some of my favourites:

  • What are your thoughts on fat Lambda function vs single-purposed functions?
  • How would you approach data migration with DynamoDB? (which I answered in a recent blog post)
  • How do you do cascade deletes with DynamoDB? Would you use DynamoDB stream with Lambda?
  • What’s the best way to import a large amount of data into DynamoDB?
  • What’s the most serverless way to wait for a slow HTTP response? (which I answered in this blog post)
  • What are your thoughts on IaC tools – Serverless vs SAM vs CDK vs Terraform vs SST?
  • How to share information between Terraform (favoured by platform teams) and Serverless/CDK/SAM? (which I answered in this blog post)
  • How to calculate the max TPS that can be handled by Lambda if we have 1000 full account concurrency?
  • If Lambda fails to send a failed event to the failure destination, how can we prevent data loss?

My plans for 2024

As I leave my medical troubles behind me, I’m going to get back on the road in 2024. And I’m looking forward to meeting people in person again. So far, I’m confirmed to speak at QCon London in April and AWS Community Day Turkey in May. I will likely speak at a few other events in the year as well. I hope to catch you in one of these in-person events.

I will continue to run the Production-Ready Serverless workshop in 2024. I’m making some significant changes:

  • Adding support for CDK: you asked (repeatedly) and I listened. Starting from the January workshop, the workshop exercises will be available in both Serverless Framework and CDK. You can choose to do either or both. The key principles are the same, but how these principles are applied in practice will be slightly different and will be tailored to each framework.
  • New lessons: I have added many new lessons to take into account the questions that you have been asking and to incorporate the changes that were announced at re:Invent 2023.
  • No more instructor-led workshops: throughout 2023, more and more of you have opted for the 4-week, self-paced workshop format. So in 2024, all the public workshops will follow the 4-week, self-paced format (see how it works here).

Over 70 of you have signed up for the January workshop already, and I’m looking forward to working with you all in the coming weeks!

And I guess 2024 would be more of the same for me – more content on AWS and serverless. Maybe a new course?

Until then, wish you all a happy New Year. See you in 2024 :-)

Whenever you’re ready, here are 4 ways I can help you:

  1. Production-Ready Serverless: Join 20+ AWS Heroes & Community Builders and 1000+ other students in levelling up your serverless game. This is your one-stop shop for quickly levelling up your serverless skills.
  2. Do you want to know how to test serverless architectures with a fast dev & test loop? Check out my latest course, Testing Serverless Architectures and learn the smart way to test serverless.
  3. I help clients launch product ideas, improve their development processes and upskill their teams. If you’d like to work together, then let’s get in touch.
  4. Join my community on Discord, ask questions, and join the discussion on all things AWS and Serverless.