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What Are Serverless Functions and How Do I Use Them?

Serverless functions are an approach to writing back-end code that doesn’t require writing a back-end.

In the simplest terms: we write a function using our preferred language, like JavaScript; we send that function to a serverless provider; and then we can call that function just like any API using HTTP methods.

This is huge for front-end developers. We’re now able to add powerful “back-end” logic to our apps just by writing JavaScript — no devops, no server code, no fuss.

This also means that our JAMstack apps gain all the benefits that come along with server-hosted apps, but with significantly lower setup and maintenance costs. We can deploy in seconds using Netlify Functions and use our serverless functions immediately.

Put another way: serverless functions turn front-end developers into full-stack developers without requiring us to learn or manage the full stack.

Serverless function examples and tutorials

To explore what serverless functions can do, I created a bunch of small examples — I’ve collected them in this post, and I’ll add additional posts as they’re published.

What to do next

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