In addition to keeping expenses in mind, you should also pay close attention to optimization.
AWS CTO Werner Vogels gave very interesting presentations at last year’s re:Invent event, which show a very important trend for 2024. He devoted the first part of his opening speech to discussing the laws of economical architecture. He talked about cloud-native architectures that aim to provide cost-conscious, sustainable and maintainable solutions. Vogels formulated seven simple laws based on his and AWS’s experience building and developing cloud platform services, with cost implications as one of the main drivers. The CTO also gave the closing presentation of the conference, during which he announced many new capabilities and functions. Using Matrix-inspired video clips, Vogels humorously introduced the topic of cost-consciousness in cloud architectures as a substitute for sustainability. More specifically, he described seven laws that a explained in more detail on a dedicated website.
According to him, costs should be included in the non-functional requirements, companies or products can fail if expenses are not taken into account at an early stage. He also believes that they need to be aligned with the business model, which requires defining the key dimension of revenue and profit generation. The CTO of AWS also pointed out that the architecture is a series of trade-offs, and companies must find the right balance between technical and business needs and strive to maximize value instead of focusing too much on minimizing costs.
The fourth law states that unobserved systems lead to unknown costs, tracking these from the outset is key as it encourages more cost-effective and sustainable solutions. To help manage expenses, Vogels suggested classifying system components by criticality and tuning the cost of availability and resiliency according to how business critical those levels are. Law No. 6 states that cost optimization is a gradual process, and companies must continuously strive to reduce system operating costs by optimizing applications, profiling, and monitoring systems and finding waste. Finally, the CTO urged everyone to question assumptions to avoid the trap of adopting the same approach or technology choice because of past experience or the status quo.
Tracy Woo, senior analyst at Forrester, summed it up as a quiet nod to the FinOps community, with AWS joining the FinOps Foundation and recently joining the FOCUS project as a steering committee member. The project aims to create a standardized technical specification for cost, usage and billing data for all major cloud providers.