What is Serverless? The “2020” edition

Serverless (in some people’s minds) currently encompasses:

  • Anything that looks like “Function as a Service” like AWS Lambda, Google Cloud Functions, and Azure Functions
  • Anything that can run a Function as a Service system, like OpenFaaS and similar
  • Ok… lots of people think it’s a synonym for Function as a Service (spoiler: it’s not)
  • Any solution that runs “on demand compute” such as Google App Engine (spoiler: it’s not)
  • Anything that runs a container on demand like Google Cloud Run or Fargate (note: I like Cloud Run)
  • Basically “on demand compute” of some description, some of which “scales to zero”


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