Students: Invitation to Serverless and Cloud-native Application Development

Bachelor students of computer science at Zurich University of Applied Sciences focus a lot on software development. Software is never developed in the blue; rather, software needs a concrete environment to function and to deliver value. In ‘Programming’ (1st/2nd semester) and ‘Software Development’ (3rd/4th semester), you learn some basic skills. In ‘Systems-oriented Programming’ (2nd semester), you apply these skills to predefined systems with some constraints. In ‘Web Development’ (3rd semester), you apply these skills to another environment in which there is a lot of pace through new technologies. In ‘Game Development’ (5th semester), you develop for specific interactive scenarios, and in ‘Mobile Applications’ (5th semester, you develop user-facing apps for common mobile platforms.

One of the most fascinating and economically important areas is the development of applications which run in the cloud. You may access them with web or mobile devices, but you still cannot see them! Still, they are very powerful, scalable to millions of users, and interconnected across cloud providers and with various backend systems such as databases, message queues and key-value stores. This is why we offer SCAD, a new elective module on Serverless and Cloud-native Application Development.

Many cloud providers exist in Switzerland and beyond, traditionally offering only basic infrastructure services and hosting, but increasingly turning into fully programmable platforms. To fully exploit the possibilities of clouds, you will need cloud-native applications whose design incorporates the highly elastic scaling, high resilience, fine-grained microbilling and dynamic adaptation to new service offerings. The largest cloud providers offer new or updated services almost weekly – do you want to miss these opportunities by having a too inflexible software design?

You cannot become a lot more cloud-native than with serverless applications. These are automatically provisioned according to the load, and run for just a short amount of time so that no decay happens over time due to slow leaks or accidentally forgotten data. Combine this technology with some multi-cloud frameworks, and you can fully exploit the best and cheapest clouds for your applications.

As lecturers and lab instructors, we hope that you are interested in SCAD. Vote for it, attend the course and labs, build cool cloud apps and produce something valuable for your CV and future projects!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *