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I recently restarted fiddling with GAE after stopping in 2012 and moving everything to heroku/aws. To say I'm blown away by how far it has come is an understatement.

Within less than a day I had a prototype up and running that handled inbound requests, did some processing, offloaded the rest to background workers and returned the request. The workers asynchronously stream data to BigQuery for real-time reporting.

The only thing I found baffling is that I could not load Googles' own cloud sdk from within the GAE environment and had to "vendor" it in, doing a bunch of workarounds/patching to get it to run. That probably consumed 3 of 4 hours it took to get this running.

Load testing this thing, GAE automatically managed everything and I never saw any error responses throughout the load test with. It's amazing how little ops work is needed.

AWS lambda and kinesis firehose/s3/Athena could provide part of this, but it's far from turnkey/conclusive. GAE/GC are just so much more complete.




> [...] doing a bunch of workarounds/patching to get it to run. That probably consumed 3 of 4 hours it took to get this running.

This always happens when I try to use one of Google's APIs/SDKs. I dread using them, I feel like they're overengineered most of the time.


Unfortunately, that's not one of those over-engineering times. GAE standard environment simply does not include the needed SDK. I'm guessing they just haven't gotten to it.

The SDK works as expected once imported as the outside library and various outbound requests things are configured and patched.

I think I overstated the complexity. All I needed to do was enable SSL for outbound connections (one-liner in the yaml file) and add the requests library patch to use URLFetch service (python/GAE specific step). Searching SO and Google documentation is what took up 95% of the 3 hours I spent on this.


Yeah, poor choice of word on my part, but I feel you. This happens to me a lot with their stuff: the solution is trivial yet not obvious and it's not documented properly so you end losing a lot of time.


The main problem with the SDKs have been that they've been changing extremely fast, and breaking backwards compatibility in every single release. The Go SDK has been particularly extreme in this regard. Not simple things like new arguments being added to functions; but actually changing everything around to the point of being unrecognizable. (The Go SDK also suffers from some unfortunate googleisms such as WithFoo() functions to chain options, which don't fit well into Go's somewhat impoverished type system.)




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