8base Product Update | Year End 2022
It's been a year of major evolution for 8base: from bootstrapped to Series A; from BaaS to launching our frontend App Builder in beta; and expanding our global footprint
The easiest way to launch a serverless GraphQL is through a low-code platform. Because all you need to do is define your data model, and you're done. GraphQL APIs are automatically created, and your backend is live.
In addition, serverless apps are automatically scalable. And, they are also elastic, which means you pay only for what you use.
In this article, we cover the differences between regular server, cloud server, and serverless. Comparing its pros and cons, as well as the role of emerging low-code technology and advantages of GraphQL.
Even though the name says serverless, the actual computing happens (and will always happen) on a server. The only difference is you don't have to manage your server in any way. You just need to define its behavior.
The resources your users consume are charged in extremely short time intervals–sometimes on a second-by-second basis. This allows you to only pay for the peaks instead of paying for the whole infrastructure that enables that peak consumption period.
And serverless backend resolves this issue by giving you all the resources you need when you need them.
When launching your app out in the world, there are only three architectural choices you can make:
physical in-house server
There is no benefit to using your own physical servers for your average app that is intended for wide market use. Even if they are powerful enough, they might be very far from your end users, causing high latency.
Plus, the capital used to buy the machines could probably be better spent on developing and marketing your app.
Cloud is much better in this regard as it's (largely) location-independent. This means you can choose the location of your server anywhere in the world. If the server's location is closer to your target market, your customers will have a better user experience.
The downside of this approach is you have a fixed-size server. If your user base grows relatively slowly, you have the option to migrate and upgrade to a more powerful server. But if you have a sudden surge of new users, you can experience performance issues or outages.
Also, you have to hire a DevOps team to manage your servers which is an additional cost for your project.
Serverless completely removes the headache of managing your infrastructure. This means no need to plan your infrastructure size in advance.
All you need to do is focus on building your service/app, and the infrastructure part is handled for you. This means additional resources will be provided for you if and when you need them. And your users will never notice you had a sudden surge in signups.
By default, you should never have server outages, high latency, or a slow/congested application.
Also, you don't need as many people managing your application because much of the DevOps work is completely abstracted away. And this makes your project much more cost-effective.
App Builder allows you to create web apps quickly and easily using nothing but your web browser. With an intuitive drag-and-drop interface, your development effectiveness can go up by 3-5X.
But you are never limited by the low-code platform. Because you can completely customize your app by adding your own code. So the parts and components that are most frequently used in every app can significantly speed up your development. And you are free to add any kind of unique component you like.
8base Backend also uses a simple graphical interface you can access through your browser. No installations are required.
When you define your data tables, your backend is done. It takes you only 1 to 30 minutes, depending on the number of tables you have. But after that, your backend is live.
Your backend resources are immediately available through GraphQL API, which is automatically created for you. You can do CRUD (create, read, update, delete) operations. As well as filtering, grouping, and aggregations.
Not to mention your backend is entirely scalable in terms of the number of requests and size of your data. All you need is users to make your project a success.
On top of serverless being the most productive and cost-effective option for your project, GraphQL adds yet another optimization in the context of a serverless architecture.
When using standard REST API, your front-end development is often slowed down by the backend.
Because the backend needs to implement every specific resource and combination of resources the front-end is going to use. Otherwise, the front-end would make too many calls to the backend and cause unnecessary resource drain.
But GraphQL makes all those resources automatically available with a single API call. And this dramatically increases the speed, reduces the costs, and increases the rate of innovation with which the front-end (and the entire project) can be developed.
Here is a resource where you can learn more about the difference between GraphQL vs. RESTful API.
This is because the low-code didn't invent anything new. It's built atop standard, widespread technologies like TypeScript, MySQL, GraphQL, and AWS. This makes it not only easy to learn but also portable.
Low-code is just helping you do the same things you're already doing in a 3-5X faster and more efficient way.
All the knowledge, concepts, and approaches you're already using when working with frameworks like React, Vue, or Angular are already part of the 8base low-code platform.
So why not give it a try?
Serverless is the best way to outsource architecture management and focus on developing your product. And GraphQL is the easiest way to speed up your development by making front-end developers less dependent on backend.