Continuing my long [one time] tradition of writing an annual review, here is my 2019 review. The format is simple:

  1. What went well this year?
  2. What didn’t go well this year?
  3. What I learned this year

What Went Well

As we waited to ring in the new year with New York so that we could go to bed at 10pm PT, Sarah asked me to describe 2019 in three words. Without hesitation out came three words that have likely changed my life more than almost anything ever will again: Astrid Marie Arimura. For one, I was going to bed at 10pm on New…


This is a post about developing jtrack, an image processing application in Java using OpenCV that utilizes some new and upcoming Java language features.

The application grabs animated images from GIPHY, runs them through an OpenCV frame processor using JavaCV (a Java wrapper to OpenCV/JNI) to detect a face and recompose the animated image, then posts the results to Slack.

The deploy artifact is a Docker image with custom JRE built using jlink and included with source.

click for animated result

Note: There are always easier, better, faster ways of doing things. Please comment if something bothers you. …

This post was originally written by Carlos Sanchez on his blog. Thanks Carlos!

The Jenkinsfile-Runner-Fn project is an Fn Project (a container-native, cloud-agnostic serverless platform) function to run Jenkins pipelines. It will process a GitHub webhook, git clone the repository and execute the Jenkinsfile in that git repository. It allows scalability and pay per use with zero cost if not used.

This function allows Jenkinsfile execution without needing a persistent Jenkins master running in the same way as Jenkins X Serverless, but using the Fn Project platform (and supported providers like Oracle Functions) instead of Kubernetes.

Fn Project vs AWS Lambda

The function is very…

Demo Architecture

This post is a guide to getting the Fn Project working with a Google Home device.

Home devices are becoming increasingly pervasive, so for a talk I gave at NIC conference in Oslo last week, I combined a Google Home device with Fn and used Fn Flow to orchestrate a series of functions based on voice commands. All of the function processing happens locally to spite our evil data-hoarding overlords.

The demo is simple. I instruct my usually-loyal robot servant to:

search Giphy for _____” (eg. dogs)

…and it’ll post the Internet’s best memes to a Slack room of your…

Summary: Our industry is going through a shift where more business solutions are built using serverless models and higher-abstraction services causing a change in developer skill sets. This will lead to low/no-code platforms further accelerating this shift.

Whenever I ponder the future of serverless I end up in an existential rabbit hole about the future of programming. I can likely attribute this to my Twitter/conference echo chamber, but I feel like our industry is in this constant vortex of technical debate — whether it’s the Kubernetes sub-project du jour, or arguing about the definition of serverless, or hearing every vendor…

From shipping a feature to winning a new customer to finding out you’re having a girl, the boom 💥 emoji has become lingua franca to concisely express one’s emotions. A few weeks ago I received an email from a former investor:

"Did I make the BOOM icon in Slack? (Indirectly through you?)Would you blog that shit so I can tell the story over pints and not be called a lying a-hole."

The answer to his question is yes. At least I think. So. Here’s his blog post.

We created the original boom 💥 emoji in 2012

The investor who sent the email above happened to be our first…

Why the first Annual Review?

Writing is hard. I never really know who I’m writing to, and thus, never start unless I’m complaining about people complaining about serverless. I’ve also learned over the years that I need separation between work and everything else, and this makes it difficult to find inspiration since one can only talk about serverless so much.

But as you, astute unidentified reader, might have guessed, a new year comes filled with both reflection AND optimism and so optimistic Chad says if I write and share more publicly, then I’ll settle into a rhythm that interests me and maybe if I’m lucky…

Our protagonist is skeptical of serverless

In the spirit of the holidays, for keynotes at Serverless Computing London and CodeMotion Madrid, I decided to reenact Charles Dickens’ Christmas Carol, set upon a brief history of technology with visits (and bad acting) from Jacob Marley and the “Ghosts of Serverless Past, Present, and Yet-to-come”. Each visit tells a story of the shift in computing from physical connections with stuff we can see, touch, feel (think pets), to digital connections with infinite hidden stuff (think cattle), and the yet-to-come ends with a “dramatic” near-death scene where Ebenezer is warned his organization is not ready for this sea-change and…

DevOpsCon in Berlin was a pretty well attended European conference. The crowd was developer heavy (about 80% devs) with the rest being either pure ops or self-identified management. I was given the opportunity to give a keynote talk on day 2, so I made the trip to unusually hot Berlin in May.

For my talk, I spent a fair amount of time researching serverless devops strategies and came to the conclusion that the industry has produced very little in the way of best practices outside of AWS-specific content for Lambda and their stack (codestar, codedeploy, cloud formation, serverless application model…

On this second monthiversary since the open sourcing of the Fn Project live on stage at JavaOne in San Francisco, I thought I’d reflect on its momentum a bit. And coming off Thanksgiving and into the holidays, it’s always nice to remember what we’re thankful for and not forget to admire the beauty of the journey. A journey that we embarked on because of our belief in a few simple truths: first, that serverless is the next frontier for modern app development, and two, that serverless apps should be build on open source stacks and natively multi-cloud.

Bringing new open…

Chad Arimura

Former founder & CEO,, now VP Serverless Advocacy at Oracle. Programmer, cover band keyboardist.

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