Google App Engine (GAE) is at the forefront of next-generation development. Because Google provides and manages the infrastructure your application is hosted on, and automatically scales your application, it’s more efficient and cost effective than traditional application development. Garth Schulte and Ben Finkel just completed a 29 video course that covers the exam objectives for the Google Qualified App Engine Developer certification, and gets you up to speed on all of the core features and beyond of Google’s Platform-as-a-Service offering in the Google Cloud Platform.
We recently talked to Garth and Ben to get the inside scoop on this course, and their tips for how to get the most out of App Engine training.
Q: What was your favorite Nugget to create?
Garth: All of the Datastore (NoSQL, Google style) Nuggets! Showing how easy it is to model, persist, and query data from an App Engine app is incredibly powerful and awesome.
Ben: I think the Memcache Nuggets were my favorite. It’s such a simple to use feature but it has such a profound impact on the performance and cost of a GAE app. I really like the payoff from those few minutes of learning.
Q: What roadblocks did you come across when creating this training and how did you overcome them?
Garth: Designing a sample application that encapsulated all of the core features of App Engine while keeping it simple to understand and learn from. Ben and I overcame this challenge with lots of coffee and teamwork!
Ben: Dialing down the sheer volume of information available in GAE to a reasonably-sized course. There is a LOT you can learn about GAE and how to make best use of it. Finding the sweet spot between what’s needed to pass the exam and all of the available features was tricky.
Q: From a student-perspective, what did you keep in mind when creating this course?
Garth: We wanted to give learners real-world examples through a fully functional application rather than just show small demonstrations of how to use each feature. So we built the sample application that brings all of these features together throughout the course, in both Java and Python.
Ben: We knew that all of our “Demonstrations” needed to be a cohesive unit from start to finish. Rather than demo each feature in a separate isolated space, we wanted to make sure the course walked through the whole development cycle.
Q: Any outside-of-the-box tips for students to get the most out of your course?
Garth: One of the best ways to learn development is to get down and dirty with it. Utilize the sample application to get some hands-on experience with App Engine, dig into the code examples, experiment, and even make it your own by adding in new features.
Ben: Use the Nuggetlab files! Seriously, they are perfect for a starting point and mirror the demonstration Nuggets perfectly. You can also compare and contrast the Python and Java versions in order to learn one language from the other.
Q: What’s the ONE thing you hope learners take away from this training?
Garth: I hope they see the potential of building applications on Google’s cloud, it’s truly mind boggling how much more efficient it is, cost and productivity wise, over building applications the traditional way. That, and I hope they take away a Google App Engine Qualified Developer certification. 🙂
Ben: How super simple getting up and running on GAE really is. For all of the power and scalability Google brings to the table, it’s really quite a short walk from knowing nothing to building a world-class enterprise app on the Google Cloud Platform.
What’s one real-world application someone can expect to use, thanks to this course?
Garth: How to build a fully-featured GAE PaaS application on Google’s Cloud Platform!
Ben: How a simple, quick, and secure web app can be brought up online with a minimal amount of effort and almost zero configuration. Any app you’ve ever dreamed of making you can start right away!
Why should you learn Google App Engine? Here are Garth’s top reasons.
What are you waiting for? Start watching this course today!