360° IT Check #44 — Node.js 18, Serverless Functions Running On Deno, And More!
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360° IT Check #44 — Node.js 18, Serverless Functions Running On Deno, And More!

Node 18

Last week, we have seen a new update to the JavaScript runtime. Version 18 did not introduce too many new features. In fact, we have seen only two of them. Few or not, they were anticipated by the Node.js community. We have also seen some breaking changes, including removal of support for 32-bit Windows machines (!). While we rarely see machines running that version of the OS, there are still some that do. Even though external factors prevailed, we witnessed a sea of computers losing support.

For more details, go to our detailed overview of Node.js 18.

The Younger JavaScript Sibling Scores A Win

Deno is the younger sibling of Node.js (they both have the same father, Ryan Dahl). After creating Node.js, Dahl had many regrets. Even worse, some decisions he had taken initially could not be changed without a complete rewrite. He addressed them in his second famous tool for JavaScript and TypeScript:

While the ecosystem of packages dedicated specifically to Deno is much more modest, there is a way to run code meant for Node.js on its sibling.

Last week, Netlify announced something big: the availability of their serverless compute functions running on the newer of the two JavaScript tools. The company went so far as to explicitly highlight what powers their service.

The Bottom Line

Explicitly showcasing Deno as the powerhouse is interesting: after all, it is much less popular than Node.js. It definitely is a deliberate action; perhaps the aim was to differentiate the product. One cannot deny, that the market of serverless functions is already pretty crowded, with AWS, Azure, and GCP dominating the space. The aforementioned three platforms do not offer what Netlify is offering, however. The tactic of being a big fish in a small pond is a proved strategy.

Looking at the announcement from another angle, it is a win for the Deno community. The support for the alternative tool is a bit underwhelming, and perhaps we could see the enthusiasm going towards the levels from around the time of the initial release.

Kotlin and Ktor handling 70 billion events every day

Ktor is the framework for building back-ends in Kotlin. It turns out this combination is quite scalable. In fact, it scales so well, that according to Adobe, it can handle 70 billion events every day. That’s nearly 3 billion events per hour, close to 49 million every minute, and just above 800,000 events per second (EPS). That’s quite an impressive score.

If you want to know more, see the video below:

The Bottom Line

It’s one thing to build a service and have it run well. At one point, however, your app will hit a wall when it comes to how many connections, events, etc., it will be able to handle. Of course, anybody can throw more money at servers. The key is to be able to write an app that will be able to handle the highest number of users at a given time without spending too much. As this case has shown, Ktor is among frameworks that scale quite well, and so is, e.g., Node.js.

New Ubuntu 22.04 LTS Version

Ubuntu is the entry-level system of choice for many, however, more importantly, it is often the operating system of choice for application deployment. Last week, Canonical, the company behind this popular Linux distribution, released the new version of Ubuntu, and a Long-Term Support version at that. 

The Bottom Line

It is frequently the case that companies will migrate between LTS versions. For once, that will decrease the frequency of updates while maintaining security of the apps. While this approach will not allow for using the newest features, it will provide a sense of stability, and will allow the teams to focus on daily work rather than worrying about transitioning to another version of an OS.

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