AWS Computing Badge

After a lot of learning, I finally got my first AWS learning badge! Doesn’t it look great on my Credly profile? :D While studying for this badge, I got a lot of thoughts and findings that I’d like to share with you in this article.

The Learning Path Itself and How I Used It

Let’s start at the beginning. AWS offers a ton of learning material and certifications. When searching for “badge” on AWS’s main learning website, the Skill Builder, you get a list of all the “Badge Readiness Paths” that will get you a badge:

AWS Skill Builder

There are new badges and paths added regularly, so keep an eye on this page.

Another nice feature of the Skill Builder is an estimation of the time you’ll need for a given course and how long it actually took you. I don’t know how they measure the time invested in the course, but I’m apparently a really slow learner. :D

AWS Skill Builder

My guess is that they assume a certain amount of minutes after a click event on the page. Because I learned in batches, whenever my other projects allowed it, I often only learned one or two lessons in a row, adding up all the assumed default time slots to a much higher number than the actual time I needed.

Besides just reading the texts and following the “story” around a new employee who wants to learn AWS, I took my time on the quizzes and read at least some of the many referenced websites, whitepapers and YouTube videos. Integrating all those different materials is really great, however sometimes slightly overwhelming.

Besides learning, I took care of my Anki learning cards and added each new information to my card deck. Especially the facts you have to learn by heart are a great fit for Anki.

Interesting Findings

The Compute learning path goes into great detail about EC2, Lambda and some additional services relevant to those two, including budgeting and right-sizing. I especially liked the stories about how to analyze a problem with one of the imaginary EC2 instances, explaining different approaches, tools and methods. The learning content is not just theoretical, but straight from the field.

Another interesting topic is the Nitro system, which is supported by newer EC2 instances. Not being a hardware guy, I found it interesting to learn about the different approaches of virtualization and hypervisors. However, I don’t really want to learn exactly how much less cost the newer instances have compared to the older ones or how much improvement in performance they have. That’s the typical downside of learning for a badge: You have to learn a lot of stuff that you don’t really need to know for your daily work.

Other interesting topics were, for example, how Lambda handles bursts of requests, the different concurrency models for Lambda and how Lambda functions should be written so that they profit from warm starts.


I’m happy having invested the time to learn for this badge and proud to add it to my Credly profile. Gamification already nudges me towards beginning to learn for the next badge! :D Maybe I’ll refresh my existing Cloud Practitioner certification or even go for one of the higher certs, I don’t know yet.