Microservices have become the buzzword in the world of software architecture. With the rise of cloud-native technologies, microservices have emerged as the go-to solution for building scalable, distributed applications. However, while microservices offer many benefits, the implementation of microservices can be tricky, and many implementations show signs of cargo cult behavior.
The Microservices cargo cult
Cargo cult behavior refers to the practice of blindly following a process without understanding why it works. In the case of microservices, this means implementing microservices without a proper understanding of what they are and how they work. Many teams jump on the microservices bandwagon because they believe it is the right thing to do, without considering whether it makes sense for their specific use case.
This approach is problematic because microservices are not a silver bullet solution. They are expensive and challenging to get right, and the benefits they offer come at a cost. For example, with microservices, you trade the simplicity of a monolithic architecture for a more complex distributed architecture. Microservices require additional infrastructure and tooling, and they can be challenging to debug and monitor.
Another issue with many microservices implementations is that they don't follow any good microservices reference architecture. A reference architecture is a set of guidelines and best practices that have been proven to work in the real world. While there are many different reference architectures for microservices, they all share common principles such as loose coupling, autonomy, and scalability.
When implementing microservices, it is essential to consider the tradeoffs involved and choose the architecture style that makes sense for your specific use case. This means understanding your requirements, your team's skills, and your organization's goals. For example, if you are building a simple application with a small team, a monolithic architecture might be the right choice. On the other hand, if you are building a large, complex system with a large team, microservices might be the way to go, but only if you can afford it.
In conclusion, while microservices offer many benefits, they are not a one-size-fits-all solution. Many microservices implementations show signs of cargo cult behavior, and they don't follow any good microservices reference architecture. When considering microservices, it is essential to understand the tradeoffs involved and choose the architecture style that makes sense for your specific use case. Microservices are expensive and challenging to get right, but if done correctly, they can offer significant benefits in terms of scalability, resilience, and agility.