Overdoing Microservices: how small is too small?

Accepted Session
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Scheduled: Tuesday, June 21, 2016 from 2:30 – 3:15pm in B201


All the cool kids are doing it, but is it possible to have too much of a good thing? I'll present some thoughts about things you can actually measure to decide if you've gone off the deep end with microservices.


When people start building micro-service architectures, one of the most common questions asked is “how big should a microservice be?” Unfortunately, the answers given are rarely satisfying, generally relying on a vague idea of what “feels right”. But as engineers, we can do better. We can actually measure characteristics of our codebases, our architectures, and our development processes to gain greater understanding of our systems. Based on these data, we can make informed decisions about the tradeoffs of size versus development velocity, architectural understandability, and operational maintainability. I’ll present a number of such metrics, and examples of them applied to real systems.


microservices, architecture, data, operations, Process

Speaking experience

I have spoken at OSCON, Open Source Bridge, Lambda Jam, CUFP, YAPC, several user groups, and given internal tech talks on a variety of topics such as "How to Serve a Billion Requests a Day with Perl", "Beautiful Concurrency with Erlang", “Enabling Microservice Architectures with Scala”, SBT, Continuous Deployment strategies, and more. Where available, slides and videos are linked from http://kevin.scaldeferri.com/dist/

This talk builds on a company internal presentation I have given previously.


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