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Tags: code azure azure-functions azure-storage

I’ve written previously about how Amazon’s AWS Lambda feels like the future. I had a little time today to play with Azure Functions, Microsoft’s new competing service.

As a preview, Azure Functions isn’t quite polished yet, but the basic building blocks are in place. You create a Function App in the Azure Portal, much like you would create a Web or Mobile App, then add a few Functions in the Portal blade.

Since the service is built on the mature WebJobs product, there is already strong language support. Azure Functions can be created with specialised C#, NodeJS, PHP, Python, Powershell, Windows Batch scripts (I know), or any standard Windows executable. The Portal UI leaves a lot to be desired for now. I did’t find any obvious way of using different languages or packaging up apps and dependencies, but did manage to get it working. The documentation implies that there are many more features ...

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Tags: aws aws-lambda aws-sns aws-cloudformation

Amazon Web Services (AWS) provides many building blocks you can use to create just about anything in the world of web-connected services. A lot of the skill in using this toolkit is in figuring out how to make the various services work together. CloudFormation is critical to this effort, as it let’s you write a config file that can be used to automate the creation of all the infrastructure you need to deliver your product. Th...

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Tags: code aws aws-lambda event-driven

Every now and then we find a technology that feels like the future, letting you achieve what you want to without getting in the way. Automatic and dual-clutch (semi-automatic) transmissions fall into this category, and some programmers occasionally get the bug from the latest experimental programming language or when rediscovering functional programming.

I’m getting that next-big-thing feeling from Amazon’s AWS Lambda service. I’ve been building enterprise data munging applications in Java and C++ for years and have done the usual little glue scripts in Python, Ruby, Bash, CMD just like most other software developers. As we all know, the code is the fun part that takes very little time compared to the brain-numbing effort of messing around with operating system...

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Tags: game-dev unity3d

This weekend I found time to continue learning about the Unity game engine and development environment. The second tutorial is a simple vertical scrolling space shooter game. My implementation of the project is on Github.

Space Shooter is a lot more complex than the Rollerball game so it’s a good introduction into game making. Rollerball...

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Tags: game-dev unity3d

Update (2012-12-11): I’ve put the project on Github. I don’t know the correct license to use, but it is safe to say it is a derivative work of this project by Unity Technologies.

I’ve had an interest in computer games for many years. Since I’m in the software trade, I’ve often thought about building a simple game as a way to learn how the technology works. I finally decided to have a go a couple of weeks ago and started looking into the technology.

The first engine that came to mind was Unity, a large cross-platform toolkit for building games. I considered a couple of other options but Unity seemed to be the easiest and most beginner-friendly tool to get something really simple off the ground....