Think of Lego blocks. Very simple in appearance and functionality on their own. However, put them together in the right way, with the right pieces, and you can create something highly complex and amazing.
The basic Lego unit is the 1×1. It’s the smallest block, connects to any other piece and hurts a lot when you step on it with bare feet.
The building blocks of AWS are Storage, Compute, Networking, Security, Monitoring, Media Processing, Analytics, and AI.
Once you’ve mastered creating simple buildings and boxes on top of your baseplate using your starter Lego set, you can graduate to a full-blown Lego kit with triangles, curved pieces and half moons to create more sophisticated things like castles, cars and bridges. In a similar fashion, after you get the hang of the AWS basics, you can add more specialized AWS services like DynamoDB, ElastiCache, Systems Manager, EFS, and Lambda.
No matter how sophisticated you get, everything is still rooted in those basic 1×1 building blocks.
But legos aren’t just about size or shape, they’re also about color. You can have the same Lego in a variety of different colors just like AWS services are variations of others. For example, Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS), Amazon Elastic Container Service for Kubernetes (EKS), and Fargate serve the same purpose but just do it in a slightly different way whereas Elastic Beanstalk, OpsWorks, and CloudFormation all allow you to manage your infrastructure in an automated way but with different levels of control.
What you build with legos or AWS, and how you build it, is limited only by your imagination. But beware, just like creating a tower of legos, unless you build a sound structure, your building will fall over. A tall skinny tower without an intelligently-designed structure will eventually collapse, and the same holds true in AWS with experience, expertise and continued education, you can create a structure that is built strong enough to support your application and users.
AWS is a compilation of many different Lego pieces that all have their own simple functions. Although on their own they may lack much functionality; combined together with other services, they can construct a highly complex and practical applications.
And you? What are you building on?