Sequoia’s Guide to Microservices

What are microservices, and why are they important?

ByMatt Miller

PublishedJanuary 26, 2016

What are microservices?

Microservices is an approach to building software that shifts away from large monolithic applications toward small, loosely coupled and composable autonomous pieces. The benefit of this abstraction is specialization, which drives down costs to develop and drives up agility and quality — while operating much more resilient systems.

Our point of view

Today’s digital innovators can trace a path that starts with mainframe computers and monolithic applications and then, step-by-step, reveals software’s interchangeable parts until we arrive at today’s cloud-based era of microservices and continuous integration. Each new layer of abstraction and standardization creates tremendous value out of the resulting increases in scale and efficiency.

More on our point of view Innovate or Die: The Rise of Microservices

Ecosystem map

The microservices ecosystem is complex and evolving. Here is our rough attempt to show how some of the pieces fit together. If you have suggestions for improvements, tweet to @mcmiller00.

Microservices summit

Sequoia held a Microservices Summit for engineering leaders to share stories about what it took to implement microservices at companies like Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Twitter, Netflix, Disney, Wells Fargo, Dropbox, Amgen, Citi, Nasdaq, Medallia, HP, Okta, Gilt, Instacart and many others. Read Aaref Hilaly’s take on the summit here.

Here are the top insights from the summit.