• Recently I attended a Girl Geek event at the Amazon Web Service (AWS) office in Sydney. It was a workshop aimed at teaching people how to create a web server with the AWS infrastructure.

    For anyone unfamiliar with AWS, they provide a huge range of powerful cloud computing services which are used by a lot of large companies. Their services have become more well known over the last couple of years and are behind a lot of well known products. This increase in users is likely because they offer such powerful services at low cost. They also cater to smart services by providing easy to use machine learning models. As more people are using AI in their products, AWS is an attractive option.

    One thing I have found with AWS is it is not super friendly for those just starting out in web development. As a front end engineer, I have only touched on some of AWS's services but straight away I noticed that their documentation was very complex. This can be great in many ways (when you are stuck and need that extra info) but sometimes it’s easier when the documentation is more concise. With AWS, every step is described in great depth and browsing the docs can feel a bit like wading through a swamp. Now, not that I don't like swamps, swamps are filled with cool things. But sometimes too many cool things at once can be a bit overwhelming.

    Ahem, ANYWAY, the workshop! The workshop was awesome because it broke down the steps into easy bite size chunks and made the process of setting up a web server quite straightforward. We had a booklet to follow so this made it easier, and before long I had set-up my server and deployed my site! Woo. The workshop was useful in the way of giving me more confidence with the AWS tools. I also began to see why their documentation is so in depth. The swamp, I mean the docs are outlining all the control you have over the AWS tools, and there are a lot of them! They also allow a great deal of flexibility and functionality which is again another attractive feature of AWS services. For large products, AWS is really just very cost effective and can provide a lot more in a shorter time frame than if you were to try source all the resources and do it alone.

    So I would encourage people to check AWS out. It’s more and more popular and getting a head start on these things is always useful :)