When I moved house I rented a van to move my possessions. I own a car but it would not have been practical to own a removal van. I don’t need a van all the time (technically I don’t need a car all the time, but do use it enough to make owning it worthwhile).
This is the model that makes sense for Serverless. For most users it would be cheaper to just rent the service when it is needed. A key point of Serverless is that you pay when you need it and don’t pay when you don’t. This can make the staging and development environment significantly cheaper without extra effort. I have worked on cloud hosted systems that were switched off overnight (and at weekends). This gave a cost saving, but if the start process failed we could be half a day without a working test environment.
Now there are cases where if you need to use a service all the time then other options become viable. You can run a server for $1 per day on Heroku.
Would Rent Infrastructure be a better name than Serverless? This could avoid the “you still have servers” debate.
Recently I have found how quickly you can stand up useful services. My team was asked to set up an sftp server. Using AWS and S3 we now have a working system 2 days after first being asked for it.
Whilst preparing my book Development I constructed a small toolchain to assemble the ePub, mobi and pdf files.
I have chosen the “Bring Your Own Book” option on leanpub to give me the maximum flexibility.
From the project files from Development I have extracted a github project that can act as a starting point for writing another book: Writers Toolkit.
Currently the scripts to setup and build are mac centric but I would welcome pull requests for other platforms.
The build tools are based upon the wonderful Pandoc. I use this to turn markdown files into ePub and pdf files. The ePub is then converted into a mobi file for Kindle.
The only issue that I have had with Pandoc is trying to convince it to correctly form P2 paragraphs. I had been using the inline ## form for this. The other option adding —- to the following line seems to be more reliable.