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Programming Amazon Web Services: S3, EC2, SQS, FPS, and SimpleDB Paperback – 4 Apr 2008
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Building on the success of its storefront and fulfillment services, Amazon now allows businesses to 'rent' computing power, data storage and bandwidth on its vast network platform. This book demonstrates how developers working with small- to mid-sized companies can take advantage of Amazon Web Services (AWS) such as the Simple Storage Service (S3), Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), Simple Queue Service (SQS), Flexible Payments Service (FPS), and SimpleDB to build web-scale business applications. With AWS, Amazon offers a new paradigm for IT infrastructure: use what you need, as you need it, and pay as you go. "Programming Web Services" explains how you can access Amazon's open APIs to store and run applications, rather than spend precious time and resources building your own.With this book, you'll learn all the technical details you need to: store and retrieve any amount of data using application servers, unlimited data storage, and bandwidth with the Amazon S3 service; buy computing time using Amazon EC2's interface to requisition machines, load them with an application environment, manage access permissions, and run your image using as many or few systems as needed; use Amazon's web-scale messaging infrastructure to store messages as they travel between computers with Amazon SQS; leverage the Amazon FPS service to structure payment instructions and allow the movement of money between any two entities, humans or computers; and, create and store multiple data sets, query your data easily, and return the results using Amazon SimpleDB.Scale up or down at a moment's notice, using these services to employ as much time and space as you need. Whether you're starting a new online business, need to ramp up existing services, or require an offsite backup for your home, "Programming Web Services" gives you the background and the practical knowledge you need to start using AWS. Other books explain how to build web services. This book teaches businesses how to take make use of existing services from an established technology leader.
About the Author
James Murty is a software developer with extensive experience creating web-based applications and architectures using Java. With a working background spanning a research institute, a small software house and various corporations he has a broad perspective on both the promise and the difficulties inherent in networked applications.
Most recently James has been excited to see the rise of webapplications and services that provide compelling new tools and new ways of approaching old problems. While experimenting in this area he created JetS3t, an open source library and application suite that is the leading Java implementation available for Amazon's S3 data storageservice.
Top customer reviews
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Programming Amazon Web Services is the ideal primer to Amazon outsourcing services. It provides a general view of everything Amazon currently offers, including some services in the beta testing phase, as well as the necessary amount of in-depth coverage of each service.
A programmer who never outsourced any part of its infrastructure might not be much confident using APIs which abstract tasks such as database access and data storage (even though it would be a good practice to use some sort of API also for locally-provided services). To help in this situations, this book kicks off with an explanation on how to think an application, with an appreciated overview of REST-based APIs, remote requests and XML documents and their handling; at the same time, the author tells you how Amazon thinks you should build your application to effectively take advantage of what they provide.
After this introductory part, the whole book is dedicated to the exploration of each service: Simple Stoage Service (S3), Elastic Compute Cloud, Simple Queue Service, Flexible Payments Service and SimpleDB. Every section provides an explanation on what the service is and how it works, including not only its advantages but also the possible problems which may arise by using it. There's also some API references and, best of all, a lot of interesting code examples. Amazon Web Services can be used in any programming language so, even though the examples in this book are written in Ruby, it's easy to understand them and "port" them to your favourite language. Moreover, there are libraries around which allow a more abstracted usage of ABS: for instance, CPAN hosts several Amazon-related modules for the Perl language.
All in all, Programming Amazon Web Services this is a fine book for anyone who is seriously interested in using Amazon to outsource application infrastructure. Highly recommended.
It covers the basics of how to use most of the services, and is extremely good for getting an understanding of the various offerings Amazon have, but for the most up to date information you'll need to pay a visit to the AWS website.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
This is an excellent book covering a very new subject matter. My only major complaint is that it seems a little rushed - I've found several typos, and even one section where a couple of lines of (important for that section) code are missing. (I figured out what was missing as I'm sure most people will.)
Also, the book is out of date. However, that is not the fault of the author or the publisher! It is that Amazon's service changes so quickly. The author and the publisher have made every attempt to mention the most recent changes to the service as of the time of writing, including pointing to places on the web to find out more information.
The material it covers is spot on. It goes through the different services that Amazon offers - including their storage, elastic computing, payment systems, and database systems. It clearly explains the disadvantages and advantages of each system, and provides -useful- code examples (in ruby) of how one can take advantage of the services Amazon provides. (There are examples in other languages, like Python, that the author makes available on the book's website.) Each section is devoted to a service for the most part, and the book is very readable.
As I said, I'd have rated this book a 4.5 if I could have. Outside of the errors due to rushing, it's quite useful and quite informative. The code is easy to follow, and I've found it very handy for working with the Amazon Web Services.