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re Invent 2021 part 1


re:Invent 2021 key themes and talks

Posted by Ryan Coates
aws re:invent 2021
Well it’s that time of the year and I’ve had the incredible fortune of a 7 day trip to Vegas for AWS re:Invent. 6 of us went, 6! You know you’re working somewhere special where 6 employees get a trip to Vegas!

re:Invent is a conference at a scale that I couldn’t really comprehend, kinda like Las Vegas, with a huge amount of talks, workshops and events it was really hard work making the most of it, but we gave it a good go. I’ll take some time to summarise some of the key learnings and standouts of my wonderfully exhausting trip.


Key themes

I generally find every conference I go to there are themes and buzzwords that are very prevalent, this was no exception.

Like ourselves many companies start off with a big monolithic codebase with a big enterprise database like SQL, and now as their applications begin to decompose into smaller more manageable chunks so should the database. AWS are pushing the agenda of using the right database for the job, one size really doesn’t fit all. There are basically aws database types for all your data needs and a series of migration tools to help you get there. In the new world of smaller services, we have the flexibility to use the best database for the job, we need to use it wisely.

Making use of huge amounts of data is a growing problem/opportunity in most businesses, we are no exception.  There were a huge amount of tech companies and consultancies offering analytics as a service and AWS are enhancing there offering by essentially making redshift and kinesis “serverless”.

AI and ML have changed significantly in the past few years, there are a huge number of services that can hold your hand and basically train your models for you, it seems that generally use cases for ml are generic enough that you can pick a template off the shelf. It’s incredibly accessible

Cool tech

Migration hub

A big focus of the talk has been about app modernization (moving all your stuff onto cloud native technologies for the full cloud shackled experience). There are some interesting tools in preview that can help with this.

Migration hub refactor spaces lets you define applications and start rerouting traffic to microservices using the strangler pattern, you could do this with load balancers or api gateway manually, but this does hold your hand through the setup. I did find it very clunky that you needed to hank crank the proxy to get it to work but I imagine this would be streamlined on the release.

Below is a diagram that illustrates the pattern, it’s fairly straight forward, add a façade layer in front of your application so you can start carving off routes to microservices.


The migration hub has loads of features to build migration plan and action it.

Amplify studio

Amplify studio is a visual development environment to simplify front end development, you can pull in basic components and define backend APIs and models in a simple but limited way. You can define your own components and functionality within and without the framework, it does seem to provide a lot of the boiler plate and a nice framework to get started with. As a terrible front end developer, I would be interested to try create something and compare the experience.

Private 5g

Probably not the most relevant to web development but a very cool idea. 5g is extremely fast often faster than fibre in some areas. With private 5g you can create a private network without the need of routers and extension points all over the place. A very useful prospect for campuses and large offices.

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