Cloud Native Applications: Implementing Stateful Messaging

Cloud Native Applications: Implementing Stateful Messaging

In this post, we’ll look at why messages are so important, and we’ll reveal how messaging types, Event Sourcing, and Command Query Responsibility Segregation (CQRS) can be applied to cloud native applications.

The definition of “cloud native” we’re using here means a friendly and optimized distributed computing environment. Key features of this type of environment are elasticity and resilience, as well as synchronous (point-to-point), asynchronous, and parallel communication. A Reactive messaging infrastructure provides loosely-coupled design, which is paramount to distributed computing. In this post, we’ll look at why messages are so important, and we’ll reveal how messaging types, Event Sourcing, and Command Query Responsibility Segregation (CQRS) can be applied to cloud native applications.

What Are Messages?

First, let’s define what a message is. Wikipedia has a great definition: “A message is a discrete unit of communication intended by the source for consumption by some recipient or group of recipients.” We will also add an additional key piece of information to this definition: messages in a distributed system must be immutable.

Now that we have a working definition, let’s look at the different types of messages we will explore:

  • Command
  • Event (declarative/historical)
  • Query (question)

The type of message or message pattern you choose will have a direct effect on how your application behaves.

Looking at Commands (Imperative)

Commands are imperative in nature and represent a request from “somewhere” to do “something.” That “something” often results in a request to change state on “somewhere.” As a result, a command can be denied. In addition, a command, if valid, is often translated into one or more events. For example:

Commands In Scala

Commands In Java

Typically, a command follows the VerbNoun format, such as PickupGroceriesas we see above.

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