Designing for the Futureby David Rinck

Cloud Observability in Action

December 30, 2023

I was gifted a copy of “Cloud Observability in Action” by Manning Publishing Company for review. I’ve had a fondness for Manning as a company ever since I read “C# in Depth” by Jon Skeet over a decade ago. Now in its 4th edition, it remains one of the best in-depth books on C# I have read. Writing a tech book in 2024 is challenging, and attracting tech readers is even more difficult now that we are in the age of Large Language Models (LLMs) and ‘instant knowledge’. I hope the need for deep knowledge persists, and companies like Manning continue to produce books that are meaningful to the next generation of developers.

“Cloud Observability in Action” definitely belongs in this category. I’ve been thoroughly unimpressed with Azure Application Insights. Developers should be able to develop their own metrics and alerts. These alerts should be capable of integrating into infrastructure like Azure’s, but they need not be tied to a specific cloud provider. The open-source community for Cloud Observability is quite mature, with tools like OpenTelemetry, Prometheus, Grafana, Jaeger, and some commercial add-ons available for more advanced needs. Once created, these observability systems can be adapted to whatever cloud you need.

I’ll review the book in the coming weeks, and maybe add some examples of how to use these tools to monitor your own applications.