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Asked my Groomsmen Using a Small App on GCP

So my fiancee Jordana spent a few weeks building these really nice boxes for her bridesmaids and I was wondering to myself.. how should I ask my groomsmen? A few things crossed my mind then I thought that it would be fun to have them go through a series of technical challenges in order to achieve this honor. 🙂 Only problem was I couldn’t make it too hard or I would be guiding them through the whole thing. So I decided they would need to do something with the cloud and I would build a small application called ‘helpmike’ to ask them.

To setup the app I followed the compute engine javascript client library example and put together a small app with oauth and the ability to insert a disk, insert an instance, and list instances. I decided not to take them through the whole vm build process to minimize delays. So they would just auth to the app and run the list instance function, locate the external IP, visit the IP in a browser and they would be presented with a form asking them if they would be my groomsman. It turns out more than half of them got through this without a problem.

So to setup the env, first launched a LAMP instance from Cloud Launcher. I then created a small form on Google Forms. I wanted to keep this pretty basic so I took the embed code from the form send screen and modified the default apache page on my Bitnami LAMP instance. I added each of my groomsmen gmail addresses to IAM so they could access the app. Wrote a bit of instructions in the notification email and on the app and that was it.

Here’s how it turned out:

Platform Testing on Google Cloud Platform and AWS

Whenever I decide to start exploring a new cloud platform I have a testing pattern that I follow. It looks somewhat like this:
1. Move all or most of my personal sites and services over to the new platform, spreading across as many platform services as possible.
This makes me aware of platform service capabilities, configuration, scale, and gives me the closest real life experience with different services beyond doing labs
2. After I have moved as much of my own personal ‘stuff’ as possible over, I usually spend a few weeks or months analyzing performance on the architecture and configurations I have created.
This allows me to improve my architecture, understand how the service bills and how I can optimize my spend, test and improve performance, identify any software or code changes to accommodate the platform, and experience platform services knobs and switches
3. Daily platform blog update reading, weekly podcasts
4. Be active or involved on platform communities
5. Take any available on demand training courses
6. Work towards certification paths or other personal set challenges
There is a more exhaustive routine that I have but for sake of this posts brevity ill keep it to these 6. This level of personal testing lets me acclimate myself with my own use cases then I have a good foundation to easily understand and being building more complex architecture on the platform.

I thought it was a good time to share a few architecture examples and iterations of what ive done with AWS and now with GCP for this site.
AWS part 1 and 2:


GCP part 1:

Admittedly I had a lot of credits for AWS so the first iteration lasted awhile! There are a couple more of these that I am working on for other sites and services I run that I will share later.

I’m also testing Google App Engine and Google Cloud Storage with a multipart large file upload portal and testing Google Genomics and BigQuery with my 23andme genome data.
Planning on updating here during my testing. Fun stuff 🙂