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Build Cloud Apps that Deliver Superior Business Value

March 16, 2014

There is a big difference between building “apps in the cloud” and building scalable, failsafe “cloud-native apps”.  This difference is easy to miss.  It’s often not apparent until one has put in some time dealing with cloud apps of both kinds.

The following list of references greatly aided me in changing my point of view from “an app in the cloud”, to a useful understanding of what it takes to develop “cloud-native apps” that deliver great business value — functionality, performance, scalability, resiliency, and cost effective operation.

Cloud Architecture Patterns by Bill Wilder, Copyright 2012 by Bill Wilder, O’Reilly Media, Sebastopol, CA

This is a wonderful little book, and an easy read as well.  It provides you with all the basic knowledge to understand what “cloud-native apps” are; why they demand different architectures; and the basic patterns of putting them together in a scalable, robust manner.  In addition to 11 patterns, it presents 4 primers that educate you on the key Cloud concepts of Scalability, Eventual Consistency, Multi-tenancy and Commodity Hardware, and Network Latency.  Your architectures will have to effectively deal with all of these.  If I had to choose one book to launch a successful stint developing cloud apps, I’d choose this one.  It applies to both Windows Azure and Amazon Web Services, although the example code is implemented via Azure.

Disaster Recovery and High Availability for Azure Applications” by Microsoft focus on availability and scalability, with disaster recovery a part of that.  This is a an excellent document.  Added on 10/21/2015.

“Failsafe:  Guidance for Resilient Cloud Architectures” by Microsoft provides an extremely useful approach (a method) to identify all the things you have to do to design well performing and failsafe “cloud-native apps”.  See the article at this link:

“Best Practices for the Design of Large-Scale services on Windows Azure Cloud Services” by Microsoft, supplies more of the implementation details than the “Failsafe” document’s methodology.  They go together hand-in-hand to guide you.  See it at this link:

Cloud Design Patterns: Prescriptive Architecture Guidance for Cloud Applications by Homer, Sharp, Brader, et al.  Copyright 2014, Microsoft Patterns and Practices.   This came out in Feb 2014 and is available in paperback (for a fee), or as a PDF (free download), or as a set of web pages.  It contains 24 patterns, plus 10 guidance topics.  There are also code snippets and samples provided as separate down loads.  I really like this book/web site.  See it at this  link:

I hope these references are as valuable to you as they have been to me!

George Stevens
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