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Simon Green
Simon Green

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Into the Cloud...

Welcome to this series of blog posts where I will be documenting my journey into the cloud.

Starting with 1) a plan, 2) achieving certification (AWS Certified Developer – Associate) to 3) gaining hands-on experience and 4) actually working with this incredible technology, I hope to put it down here.

My background

Coming from a Trust and Safety and Product Analytics background at letgo/OLX I decided I wanted to learn more about and begin working with cloud computing. The more I read about the endless possibilities and what can be achieved with it when used well was intriguing to me.

I have +6 years of technical IT experience, +2 years of developing with Python (monitoring/reporting and automation) and inside knowledge of how cloud computing works in a company that develops its own applications.

I have loved building and fixing things since I was a child and more recently over the last few years I can recall numerous long SQL and Python sessions, building and debugging etc.

The way forward

Both Letgo and OLX both use AWS as their cloud computing platform, as well as AWS having >40% market share globally it was the logical platform to begin focussing on.

After some months of studying I achieved the second-level-up AWS Certified Developer – Associate certification in September 2023. With this in hand I immediately started working on actually using these services to build personal projects, this is where the fun begins.


The Cloud Resume Challenge

To do this I decided to take on The Cloud Resume Challenge, developed by Forrest Brazeal who amongst other things is a cloud architect, an ‘AWS Serverless Hero' and currently working as Head of ‘Developer Media’ at Google Cloud. The challenge he devised essentially ‘tells you what to do’ but not necessarily how to do it, that is the beauty of it, that the challenger needs to figure this out themselves and not follow step-by-step tutorials on how to complete the project.

book cover

So here it is, the Cloud Resume Challenge, in a nutshell:

  • Building the frontend:

    • Create a simple html page and host it on S3
    • Purchase a domain name
    • Use AWS CloudFront to only allow https connections
    • Configure all certificates etc
  • Configure the backend (visitor counter):

    • Build the website visitor counter API using DynamoDB, Lambda (Python) and API Gateway
    • All config and logic will be achieved using these services, nothing templated.
  • Frontend / backend integration:

    • Connecting everything together
  • Automation / CI

    • Introducing testing and automation to round out the project

(As an overview, this is the end result of what I have built)

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This series of blog posts will document my progress to achieving this challenge. Partly for my benefit (so I can recall the steps at a later date!) and partly to share with anyone who is interested.

Thanks for reading!

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