Cloud-native technologies have become an important part of modern software development. The cloud-native architecture allows us to handle sudden surges in demand in an organized and efficient way through the use of containers, microservices, DevOps, and APIs. With cloud jobs in such high demand, you can help set yourself apart from the competition by developing strong cloud skills.
In this article, we’ll explore the term cloud-native and discuss the benefits of cloud-native architecture, how to build a cloud-native application, and what to know for your cloud interviews.
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Cloud-native is an approach to application development that uses the cloud computing delivery model. Cloud-native development was designed to enhance modern application development by employing the scalability, resiliency, and flexibility that the cloud provides.
As defined by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), “cloud-native technologies empower organizations to build and run scalable applications in modern, dynamic environments such as public, private, and hybrid clouds.”
Note: The CNCF was created by the Linux Foundation in 2015. It’s an open-source software foundation that promotes cloud-native technologies. Companies like Microsoft, Oracle, and Intel are members of the foundation. They support open-source projects such as Kubernetes, Envoy, and many more.
Cloud-native app development leverages things like containerization, service meshes, declarative APIs, and microservices to allow you to build, deploy, and manage high-impact cloud-native applications. Cloud-native services use technologies such as Docker, Kafka, Kubernetes, and serverless functions to help you efficiently build and run scalable applications in private and public cloud environments.
Cloud-native architecture focuses on designing apps or services that were made to exist in the cloud rather than on-premises infrastructure. The cloud-native architecture enables us to create and deploy applications that are easy to maintain and have flexibility without relying on physical servers.
Microservices and serverless functions are very important in cloud-native architectures. Microservices are one of the main parts of cloud-native app architecture. Many companies use them because they support DevOps, improve scalability, reduce costs, and enable flexibility.
Microservices and containerization support cloud-native apps by enabling us to switch between cloud providers, deploy services independently, and deploy services in different languages or frameworks without issues. There are many benefits to implementing a cloud-native architecture into your application development process. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits and challenges:
Traditional apps are basic apps that run on a mainframe environment or that have a client/server environment. Cloud-native apps implement the cloud computing delivery model to improve the app development process.
Let’s take a look at some of the main differences between cloud-native apps and traditional apps:
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There are many different tools and practices we can use when building and operating cloud-native applications. Let’s take a look at some of the fundamentals:
DevOps is a combination of philosophies, practices, and tools that increases an organization’s ability to deliver apps and services quickly and efficiently. DevOps allows us to fully use the native cloud capabilities and ensures that dev and operations teams work together with regular communication and common goals. With DevOps, our software development processes and more consistent and efficient.
Microservices architecture involves developing applications as collections of smaller services. Each microservice can be manipulated independently of other services within the same application. This enables a more streamlined application development lifecycle without negatively impacting users.
Continuous delivery is made possible by Agile development practices. It means that we constantly make phased software changes through automation. It’s a very reliable way to release and deliver software more frequently and safely.
Since cloud-native applications rely heavily on microservices, we need a well-defined way for these separate services to communicate with each other. This is where APIs come in. Application programming interfaces (APIs) connect products and services and allow them to easily communicate so we can maximize the development process.
Using containers gives us more efficiency and speed compared to traditional virtual machines. With containerization, a single operating system instance is divided across one or more containers, which allows us to create and deploy individual microservices.
If you want to work in the cloud space, it’s important to know about cloud-native application development. Let’s discuss some fundamental information you should know and useful things you can do before your cloud-related interview:
Your expected skills and knowledge will depend a lot on the position you’re interviewing for. Overall, you still need to have a solid understanding of the fundamentals of cloud computing. Make sure you have the knowledge to answer basic questions about the cloud.
Your preparation and study topics will depend on the position you’re applying for. Make sure to brush up on the relevant ideas and technologies that pertain to the job you want. It’s also important that you demonstrate that you have some hands-on experience with cloud computing. If you don’t have experience, you should have a solid understanding of the concepts and be able to explain them at a higher level.
A cloud certification shows potential employers that you have a solid understanding of the fundamentals of cloud computing. Over 80% of hiring managers say that cloud certifications make applicants more desirable. The most popular certifications on the market now are for AWS, Azure, and GCP. Regardless of the certification you choose, multi-cloud skills are in high demand, so you’ll have room to move around.
DevOps is a strategy to help speed up application development by allowing operation feedback to come right to the developers. This means that cloud engineers follow their app throughout its entire lifecycle. For interviews, prepare to answer questions about things like disaster control, feedback, and automated data management.
Don’t forget the soft skills! Now more than ever, tech companies are looking for well-rounded candidates with technical skills and soft skills. Make sure to highlight experiences that demonstrate your flexibility, adaptability, communication skills, and your customer service mentality.
Congrats on taking your first step with cloud-native applications! Cloud-native development is growing in popularity, so it’s an important thing to know for a career in software development. There’s still so much more to learn about cloud-native app development, such as:
Getting hands-on experience with cloud-native applications is a great way to demonstrate to potential employers that you have the relevant skills and experience with the cloud. To start learning about the listed concepts and a lot more, check out Educative’s course CloudNative Development with Tailwind, Google Cloud, and Firebase. In this curated course, you’ll get hands-on experience in developing, testing, and managing a complete cloud-native application.
By the end of the course, you’ll have the foundational knowledge you need to develop cloud-native applications on your own or with your team. You’ll also have great experience to talk about in your next interview!
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