The term microservices was first coined by Dr. Peter Rodgers in 2005 and was initially known as “micro web services”. The main driver behind “micro web services” at the time was to break up single large “monolithic” designs into multiple independent components/processes, thereby making the codebase more granular and manageable.
Modular, distributed applications date for back several decades. And in this regard, microservices are not a new concept. However, what popularised microservices was the principles governing how they were designed and the way they were consumed. While conventional distributed systems of that era relied on proprietary communications protocols, microservices took advantage of open standards such as HTTP, REST, XML and JSON.
A microservice is a small, loosely coupled, distributed service. It is part of a broader microservices architecture, comprising a set of loosely coupled microservices that operate together to solve a common goal. A collection of microservices can be regarded as a system.