In nature, bigger isn’t always better. And while a great white shark may be the scourge of the oceans, there are many instances where a school of fish is more capable of surviving and thriving as a group than any single organism. In fact, success by collaboration is a common theme throughout the animal kingdom; ant colonies, beehives, wolf packs, etc. all benefit from working within loosely coupled systems to distribute control and achieve common goals. And should one member of the colony, hive, or pack perish, the rest of the group can continue to function and make up for the loss.
Microservices take this approach and apply it to software development and system architecture. The idea is that it is often faster, easier, safer, and more efficient to build a number of component functions or services separately, than it is to install the same functionality into a self-contained and fully interconnected system. Here, we take a closer look at microservices, along with their attributes, benefits, and challenges.