Microservices solve problems of clumsy all-around applications. The isolated, functional modules with APIs are simple to develop but can be complex to deploy.
IT circles primarily talk about all-around applications. Meanwhile, microservices has become a new and mysterious term being passed around. Should you pick up this trend in 2022?
How Do Microservices Work?
Microservices are parts of an application—single-function modules that work independently. From a technical point of view, each of them runs its own process, occupying its own piece of memory storage. Although they remain integral components of one application, you can install them on separate computers or servers.
The majority of microservices speak to each other through REST API, mostly communicating in a decentralized way. Rarely, one microservice would play a hub role, collecting and forwarding messages from the others.
Advantages of Using Microservices
If you often hear about bugs bringing e-commerce or SaaS businesses to a halt for hours, microservices may offer a solution. Their isolated nature means you can precisely locate a failure in a workflow. After fixing it, it requires less effort to deploy only a microservice instead of an entire application.
Isolation also solves a lot of scaling issues, providing flexibility for intensively growing businesses. You don’t have to upgrade the whole application; however, you may only need to upgrade one or a few microservices. It helps to remove bottlenecks from the workflow swiftly.
Moreover, microservices can be built using different programming languages. You can hire people with better programming skills and not because they’re into a particular language.
As a result, you get a higher release speed and your IT architecture is resilient and always up to date at a lower cost.
With microservices, deployments happen so often that you have to coordinate them very carefully. Furthermore, since microservices are independent at performing their tasks, they must be tested as a whole before rolling out new ones.
You will definitely run into the necessity to use a deployment automation tool. One or more specialists in your team will get busy with orchestrating development life cycles. You may even need to hire a development operations engineer. That adds to the final invoice.
Yet, if you have frequent system failures and microservices could eliminate them, you should do a thorough calculation. You must compare the costs of a new architecture to the expected revenue loss from the breakdowns. You can use historical data to estimate a possible benefit or an absence of such. For instance, take the average number of orders per hour and multiple them by breakdown duration.
How to Build a Microservices Architecture?
Before you start, you need to analyze existing software and choose a decomposition pattern. We recommend looking at business functions that they perform: how parts of one application contribute to the revenue. For instance, order and delivery management are good candidates for disintegration and becoming microservices. They have different business functions and can be reincarnated as independent modules.
In this way, you should go through all of your applications and create a project roadmap.
You implement microservices architecture step by step. Whereas parent applications keep going, you replace their features one by one with more isolated modules. Indeed, you can always engage a partner company to make this journey safe and short, from planning to deployment.
Conclusion: Where Are Microservices Used?
Microservices architectures are a good fit for steadily growing companies that have in-house developers or plan to actively form a developer team. Microservices work especially fine for e-commerce and SaaS brands that constantly experience turbulent changes. Such businesses can react better if they have many “joints” instead of a single monolith platform.
And you don’t have to wait until 2023 to start the microservces development: Laminar will help you move toward the new architecture in a leap.
Learn why you need to incorporate a cryptocurrency payment gateway into your applications and the most important features a crypto wallet should have.
With every passing day, it seems cryptocurrencies are moving a little closer to the mainstream. More and more people own crypto, and countries, such as El Salvador, are starting to accept it as legal tender. Multiple Reserve Banks around the world are experimenting with their own digital currencies.
Although Bitcoin has proven itself as a very successful store of value, there still hasn’t been an absolute breakout use for Bitcoin or any other digital currency. Very few people are using crypto as a daily currency right now, but it feels like just a matter of time.
The fact that a company as large and influential as Facebook has devoted so much time and money to develop its own coin, called Diem (formerly Libra), tells you all you need to know about the future of currency and the direction online payments are going.
The Likelihood of Widespread Crypto Adoption
It’s starting to feel inevitable. Simply consider this opening paragraph from the influential politics website Politico in early June 2021. “The Federal Reserve is taking what may be the first significant step toward launching its own virtual currency, a move that could shake up banks, give millions of low-income Americans access to the financial system and fortify the dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency.”
Those types of stories are popping up almost every day. Ecuador is the first country to accept Bitcoin as legal tender. Brazil is not far behind, and the European Central Bank is developing a digital currency, too.
While it’s still unclear which of the many cryptocurrencies are going to emerge as the standard for the next wave of finance, it seems clear that quick, blockchain-based digital payments that don’t require an interface with the banking system as we know it today, are going to be a reality.
Vital Features of Any Crypto Wallet
As an app developer, it seems prudent for you to consider how you would incorporate a crypto wallet into your user interface. For example, there are certain features you should consider as non-negotiable at this point in the development of cryptocurrency.
Security is paramount. Your users need features like biometric authentication, 2FA, and double-layered passwords in order to access their wallets. If a wallet isn’t secure from cyber threats, then it’s a nonstarter.
Multiple Currency Compatibility
Avoid putting all your eggs in one basket. You may have a particular favorite coin but it makes more sense to remain agnostic and allow the users to pick what currency they use.
QR Code Scanner
Your wallet should be able to differentiate between multiple addresses and send and receive transactions between them. The best way to do this is through a QR code scanner.
It’s frustrating to not receive a notification when a transaction takes place. Build in push notifications across different platforms for every transaction through the crypto wallet.
There’s nothing more off-putting than a confusing payment gateway with too many features. This isn’t an area where users want to spend too much time—they just want it to work and be safe. Make sure your design is intuitive and transparent and it integrates well with the rest of your software.
The future of microtransactions is going to look very different from how it looks today. We are on the cusp of a profound shakeup to the financial system, and while it may be too early to say how, it’s not too early to start thinking about how a cryptocurrency payment gateway can be part of your site or application in the near future.
Learn how AWS continues to innovate by leveraging process automation, AI, ML, and IoT to build additional functionality to help your business.
“When you have a period of discontinuity like a pandemic, companies take a step back and they rethink what they’re doing,” said incoming AWS CEO Andy Jassy at the AWS re:Invent 2020 in December 2020.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) continues to innovate and reinvent itself by leveraging process automation, AI, ML, and IoT to build additional functionality. Here are just a few of the ways that businesses are using AWS robotic process automation for better data analysis and business insights.
- Amazon Connect Services
AI can transcribe a phone call in real time and perform sentiment analysis, then describe mitigation steps or automatically escalate calls.
- Amazon ComprehendUsing Natural Language Processing (NLP) and machine learning, Amazon Comprehend finds relationships in text. Its data sentiment analysis tool analyzes text for sentiment, language, syntax, and key phrases.
- Amazon Outposts Edge
Amazon Outposts is shifting workloads to the edge with an on-premises box. Amazon Outposts architecture extends the AWS infrastructure, services, APIs, and tools to virtually any data center, colocation space, or on-premises facility for a consistent hybrid experience.
- AWS CloudFormation Modules
With AWS CloudFormation, you can define your infrastructure and apps using modules. These modules are reusable building blocks that encapsulate resources and configurations that can be applied across an organization. Many of the modules are being built and available through the open-source developer community.
- AWS Lambda
AWS Lambda allows organizations to run code without provisioning or managing servers. You can run code on nearly any type of backend service or application without administration. You upload the code and AWS takes care of everything else to run (and scale) your code with high availability. Only pay for computer time. When the code isn’t running, there’s no charge.
- AWS Batch
AWS Batch allows fully managed batch processing at any scale. You can easily run hundreds of thousands of batch computing jobs simultaneously. AWS process automation dynamically provisions the resources needed based on volume and requirements of the batch jobs without human intervention.
- AWS Elastic Load Balancing
AWS Elastic Load Balancing automatically distributes incoming traffic across multiple Amazon instances. This improves your fault tolerance in applications and automatically reroutes traffic to healthy instances while restoring unhealthy instances. You can balance loads across single or multiple availability zones to improve app performance.
- Amazon IoT Events
As a fully managed service, Amazon IoT Events can connect a nearly unlimited number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices. AWS process automation can detect and respond to sensor and app events in real time. It avoids having to build expensive custom apps to trigger additional events.
These are just a sampling of the ways businesses can automate using AWS to improve efficiency and productivity.
If we’ve learned anything during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that we have to be agile in our approach. Who would have imagined the need to increase employees working remotely by 44% during 2020? It took an innovative approach to leverage cloud-based technology to make it happen.
“It is the cultural mindset,” Jassy said. “The shift of being in the digital world where you have to iterate every single day to survive.”
Create the Optimal Cloud Environment for Your Business
Designing a cloud environment to fit your data needs takes focus and attention to detail. At Laminar, we do the heavy lifting so you can concentrate on taking your business to the next level. We create the environment for your IT infrastructure to excel with advancing technology to fuel your business growth.
Contact Laminar today to get a quote or learn more about AWS process automation.
Cutover, Staged, or Hybrid: Understanding Migration Types
Learn how to decide on the right type of cloud or data migration and choose between cutover, stages, and hybrid.
Cloud or data migration may become a breakthrough for your company. Each business needs a unique migration scenario to make this innovation work for a profit.
Before Drafting a Migration Project Plan
Your employees enjoined using the same CRM or ERP for years, even despite its quirks. But one day, the clumsiness of it grew unbearable for the business.
That’s how companies typically come to data or cloud migration. In a few lucky cases, moving the storage or database is enough. Why lucky? Because your employees won’t get involved, except for the developers and system administrators. When you have to replace the interface, too, it means a long adoption and a lot of learning for the end users.
To avoid pushing your people too hard and ensure technical success, you should first choose the right migration type. Doing so ultimately influences everything in your project plan: the schedule, the cost, people involved, vendors to contract, and of course, the final result.
Data Migration Scenarios
Different classifications are possible, but we are currently interested in one based on the project timing.
Cutover, Known as the Big Bang
How does cutover migration work? Company staff keeps working with the existing system, while a team or external partner develops a whole new one. Once the new platform is ready, you set a day when you cut off access to the old system and replace it completely with the new one.
Such a plan for cloud migration suggests switching your cloud technology with a single move. Thus, it has been proven to be a bit risky and deserves its second name: the Big Bang.
This is definitely a more relaxed data migration strategy. With the staged migration method, you divide all users into groups and migrate their accounts in bunches. The first bunch—usually, the power users—will help developers catch the last imperfections and fix them before adopting the technology in the entire company.
This strategy has no strict timing and no “point of no return,” and should be a strong consideration by migration beginners. It works well for migrating email accounts since it rarely matters if everybody in the company uses the same email settings or not.
With this migration method, you isolate independent features or workflows and migrate them separately. For instance, you move your calendar to a new cloud and keep using the old provider for email. Sometimes, companies run two systems in parallel, synchronizing the databases to ensure that all employees have access to the same data.
The hybrid approach may lead to confusion among end users. Not everyone can keep in mind which system does what and where one should enter new information.
Factors to Consider Before Migration
An efficient migration plan should evolve out of the considerations concerning timing, resources at your disposal, and specifics of the workflows that you’re migrating. A few basic questions that you should discuss with your stakeholders in advance:
- Do we have any pressing deadlines for finishing the migration?
- Can we actually survive a failed cutover?
- Do we have interdependencies between existing workflows?
- Do we have any independent groups among users?
- Do we have an IT team that can work on the migration for several months?
Most of the answers depend on the company size. A large enterprise is more likely to have an experienced developer team. But it also bears more risks in case of a failed migration. These can be negated by adopting a new cloud gradually.
Smaller companies may lack development expertise, but they’re easier to move at once. Most likely, they don’t need a highly customized solution and can obtain a ready one to roll it out quickly.
Indeed, we propose a few basic questions to clarify before migration. Technical issues are specific to each company. For a secure cloud migration, we kindly recommend getting advice from Laminar, an established consultant with a proven track of trouble-free data and cloud migrations.
Doing business in the cloud creates competitive advantages and cost-savings opportunities. Learn five success factors to deploy a cost-efficient cloud strategy.
If you’re not doing the majority of your business in the cloud, you’re likely missing competitive advantages and cost-savings opportunities. More than 93% of enterprises are using a multi-cloud strategy, while 87% have a hybrid approach combination on premises.
Spending on cloud services and infrastructure increased 34% last year and it’s not stopping. Digital migration and transformation continue to be at the top of most business agendas worldwide in 2021.
Five Success Factors for a Cost-Efficient Cloud Strategy
A well-designed cloud application framework is the key to deploying successful cloud solutions. When you have the right infrastructure, your business runs smoothly, whether you have employees working on premises, remotely, or in a hybrid situation.
We employ these five core principles as part of designing a cloud cost optimization framework.
- Define Operational Objectives
- Reliable and Redundant Systems
- Secure Cloud Storage
- Efficient Resource Management
- Cost Optimization Cloud Services
Define Operational Objectives
The first step in creating a robust, reliable infrastructure to manage your data, apps, and business needs is to define your operational objectives. The better you understand your needs, the better you can optimize your investment. For example, keeping nonsensitive data in a public cloud while reserving sensitive data and mission-critical applications for the private cloud can help keep costs down.
It takes a careful analysis of your business use-case to determine best practices for your organization.
Besides determining your needs, your cloud strategy should also include:
- System monitoring for performance and health
- Event handling
- Automating routine tasks
- Policies and procedures
Reliable and Redundant Systems
Downtime is not only a productivity killer, but there’s a financial cost as well. Gartner estimates that unplanned downtime costs an average of $5,600 per minute. That can range from $140,000 to more than half a million dollars per hour, depending on organizational size.
System monitoring, redundant systems, cloud connectivity, and automated backups are just the starting point for building a resilient IT architecture.
- Automated failover
- Business continuity
- Disaster recovery
- Redundant infrastructure
Secure Cloud Storage
When moving data to a cloud infrastructure, two-thirds of IT professionals say their most significant concern is security. A well-designed cloud application framework deploys best practices for security with a separate security layer.
- Military-grade encryption
- Identity and Access Management (IAM)
- Secure end-user devices
- Philosophy of least access
- Threat identification and mitigation
Your deployment should include a focus on employee education. 99% of cloud security failures happen on the customer end and not with the cloud provider, according to Gartner.
Efficient Resource Management
Just making the move to the cloud won’t solve your business problems. It takes a holistic approach to develop your infrastructure, applications, IT, and resources to create an optimal environment.
- Workload management
- Performance monitoring
- Scalable and flexible architecture
- Load balancing
Cost Optimization Cloud Services
Nobody wants to spend more than they need to get the results they’re after. One benefit of the cloud is that you pay for what you’re using now with the flexibility to add more capacity when necessary. Other cost optimization strategies include:
- Avoid overspending on unused capacity
- Private vs. public cloud
- Tracking usage, adoption, and cost anomalies
- Active management of software licenses
Rightsizing your computing services and optimizing them can be tricky. For example, there are more than 1.7 million possible combinations for cloud administrators when it comes to sizing instances.
Get Expert Help to Optimize Your Cloud Costs
If you don’t have the internal skills you need, the personnel to design your IT architecture, or the capacity to manage it, you’ll benefit from an expert set of eyes to help guide you.
When it’s time to figure out how to optimize cloud costs, experience can make a significant difference. Contact the technology enablement experts at Laminar for a free consultation to see how you can optimize your cloud costs while futureproofing your business systems.
Learn how to modernize your business applications and achieve high flexibility with the hybrid cloud approach
When you start to hear about delays, broken schedules, and unresponsive servers in your company, it’s time for a digital transformation.
And even if everybody talks about clouds, you may be cautious about moving your entire IT system into a cloud. We want to suggest a reliable compromise: a hybrid cloud approach.
What Is the Hybrid Cloud Approach?
The hybrid cloud approach allows you to use the synergy of on-premise and public cloud solutions. With a hybrid cloud, some workflows run on your private server or on-demand private cloud, whereas others run in a public cloud.
You can shift workloads between your private computing resources and cloud environments, distributing them efficiently.
The workflows, or rather the applications that incorporate them, talk to each other using different methods—mostly the APIs. The collaboration between applications located in separate environments is enabled through virtualization and containerization technologies. They wrap up each software and make it feel native on any platform.
Role of DevOps in This Approach
Although a hybrid cloud infrastructure comes with management software to steer the workflows, you should have a development operations (DevOps) engineer on your side. Cloud DevOps keeps track of all existing private cloud solutions and public cloud services, maintains them, and prevents conflicts and counterproductive resource utilization. This person or team) monitors the integrity of single applications and their performance.
In addition, DevOps coordinates deployments to ensure the completion of development life cycles: costly and risky projects with a lot of dependencies.
Why Move Toward the Hybrid Cloud Approach?
Public cloud services outscore their stationary private counterparts by many factors. Once your company begins growing, you suddenly need to speed up your workflows on short notice and without any cost explosion.
But you may still prefer to keep the most sensitive data on a server physically located in your office building. At the same time, you may implement applications that require quick response and scalability through cloud deployment.
If all above is the case, then the hybrid cloud approach may be the best option.
Modernizing Your Business Applications
Migration to cloud technology is a perfect chance to upgrade your existing applications. You can replace legacy ones running in your data center with native cloud applications. Many providers offer out-of-the-box solutions for enterprise resource planning, logistics, customer relationship management, and much more.
Apart from this, you can stick to custom-developed applications and let them breathe freely with the power of edge computing.
Three basic options are available for modernizing your applications:
- Lift and shift: move your application into the cloud without any interventions into it
- Partition: inside the same application, you move some of its workflows into the cloud
- Refactor: let your developers rewrite the source code completely to make the application cloud-native
The right way is always unique for your business.
How to Achieve Flexibility With the Hybrid Approach
As mentioned before, with a hybrid cloud approach, your workloads aren’t rigidly bound to either cloud or private servers. You can move them between environments, sparing resources and preventing system overloads and database crashes.
Flexibility means reliability. If you can orchestrate your capacities and deliver your customers what they need and when they need it, you’ll become a reliable business partner.
Hybrid cloud architecture won’t restrict you from performing secure, authorized deduplication: a procedure for tidying up your data storage. And it works with confidential data that can’t directly match with other methods.
You will find a lot of advice saying you should move to a cloud model. But what you really need is a precise understanding of cloud computing, your business needs, and the intersection between them.
Laminar has a proven track of successful cloud migrations and can demarcate for you a reasonable migration scope and support you by its implementation.