The Blog

Parler’s New Serverless Architecture

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(Full credit to Alice Goldfuss for the absolutely incredible title.) So, AWS booted Parler off of their service on the grounds that “calling for the assassination of elected officials was well outside the bounds of AWS’s acceptable use policy,” and half of the internet is suddenly an expert on reverse cloud migrations. I’m going to […]

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The AWS Managed NAT Gateway is Unpleasant and Not Recommended

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I’ve given so much grief to the AWS Managed NAT Gateway over the last few years that if I were to pass all of that grief through one of the gateways themselves it would bankrupt my company. It occurred to me that while I’ve talked about my problems with the service in bits and pieces […]

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My re:Quinnvent Justification Letter 2021

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AWS offers its usual re:Invent justification letter to get your boss to let you attend re:Invent. As per my annual re:Quinnvent tradition, I’ve modified it slightly and sent it to my business partner: Dearest Mike Julian, I’d like your blessing and permission to attend AWS re:Invent 2021, Nov. 29 – Dec. 3 in Las Vegas. […]

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The Unfulfilled Promise of Serverless

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I suggest that serverless computing, or “serverless” has hype that at this point has outpaced what the technology / philosophy / religion has been promising. Serverless computing arrived (debatably; please do not email me about this whatever you do, fans of Google App Engine / CGI scripts / managed SaaS offerings / pedants) with something […]

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The Sneaky Weakness Behind AWS’ Managed KMS Keys

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Lambda is growing rapidly in popularity as a compute platform. After delegating a whole range of operational decisions to AWS, we are free, we’re told, to focus on our application logic while AWS tries to make the supporting machinery as transparent as possible. Until that all goes away because the execution role was deleted and […]

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The Dumbest Dollars a Cloud Provider Can Make

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Let’s talk about the dumbest dollars a cloud provider can possibly make. No, I’m not talking about data egress or the Managed NAT Gateway data processing fee; those are rent-seeking behaviors that embody Day 2 thinking. I’m talking about the dumbest money — the kind where cloud providers step over dollars to pick up pennies. […]

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The TurboTax of AWS Billing

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Today, I want to talk about TurboTax. Yes, while Intuit is a longstanding AWS reference customer, I’m not here to talk about its cloud bills. Instead, I’m going to apply its consumer tax product to how I think about AWS bill savings. For readers who aren’t in the United States or familiar with the way […]

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Why I Turned Down an AWS Job Offer, Revisited

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It’s been three years since I turned down an attractive job offer at AWS because of the required noncompete agreement. Frankly, I still don’t have any regrets about the decision as Amazon piles on. Since this article was originally published in August 2019, a lot has happened: AWS sued Brian Hall in 2020 under the […]

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