Why a Serverless Data API Might be Your Next Database

Why a Serverless Data API Might be Your Next Database

Why a Serverless Data API Might be Your Next Database. In this article, author Pieter Humphrey discussed database as a service (DBaaS) and serverless data API for cloud based data management. As you might expect, a serverless DBaaS scales to meet the immediate needs of the application it is servicing.

Key Takeaways

  • Serverless DBaaS is maturing, but a high barrier to entry remains
  • DBaaS ease of use has to be about both developers and operators
  • DBaaS delivered as Data APIs deliver that ease of use
  • True serverless DBaaS autoscaling (out and in) changes the economic and operational game
  • The Data API gateway pattern is transformative for data on Kubernetes

App development stacks have been improving so rapidly and effectively that today there are a number of easy, straightforward paths to push code to production, on the cloud platform of your choice. But what use are applications without the data that users interact with? Persistent data is such an indispensable piece of the IT puzzle that it’s perhaps the reason the other pieces even exist. 

Enter cloud and internet scale requirements, essentially mandating that back-end services must be independently scalable / modular subsystems to succeed. Traditionally, this requirement has been difficult in the extreme for stateful systems. No doubt, database as-a-service (DBaaS) has made provisioning, operations, and security easier. But as anyone who has tried to run databases on Kubernetes will tell you: auto scaling databases, especially ones that are easy for developers to use, remain out of reach for mere mortals.

Serverless data offers enticing benefits, but market offerings are limited. What serverless data can, should, or could do for us isn’t always well understood. And yet, database simplicity for application developers today is increasingly taking a new form: autoscaling database services that are delivered as fluent, industry standard APIs -- APIs that are secure, well documented, easy to use, and always on. While it’s true that schemaless document databases and web APIs like REST and GraphQL are not new concepts, data API gateways have emerged as a helpful pattern when providing autoscaling services for these APIs at global scale.

Okay, so there is a lot of unpack there. Let’s take it easy and greet these concepts one at a time, giving these new guests the time and space they deserve. Besides, it’s been a while since they all got together. 

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