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How Kalix Abstracts Away Headaches

The Kalix Team at Lightbend
  • 27 October 2022,
  • 6 minute read


In general, abstraction involves removing or hiding the unnecessary attributes of something to focus on the essentials. To that end, abstraction is one of the fundamental concepts in programming that aims to reduce programming complexity by hiding the low-level (unnecessary) details of the underlying logic or implementation from users. In doing so, abstractions allow developers to design and implement complex software systems more quickly.

As programming languages continue to evolve, so do the layers of abstraction, which allow for greater reusability of code and greater code efficiency. Kalix is one of such technologies that aim to make the life of developers more manageable by using abstraction.

This post provides an overview of Kalix, what it does, and how it makes life easier for developers.

Abstraction Done Right with Kalix

Software developers today have a lot of wonderful technologies at our disposal that we can use to build robust applications. However, each of these technologies comes with unique complexity—we must understand the underlying system, how it works, and how to integrate it with our applications. This can be time-consuming and require considerable thought and effort.

Kalix is a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) microservice and API development platform that dramatically simplifies the complexities of building highly scalable, real-time applications. Kalix does this by combining an API-first, database-less, and serverless development approach to provide developers with an additional “application layer” that manages the underlying app’s properties and infrastructural needs on behalf of its users.

Kalix provides business-critical features we can use to build back-end or full-stack cloud-native applications in any programming language. It combines the necessary software components and abstracting implementation details to provide a unified and simplified application layer.

With Kalix, developers don’t have to worry about the underlying application infrastructure, such as databases, service meshes, message brokers, caches, and API gateways. These are all abstracted so developers can focus on implementing features and services. In doing so, Kalix unlocks innovation by making it easy for any full-stack or back-end developer to build high-performance, data-centric applications rapidly and at a low cost.

According to Lightbend, the company behind Kalix, the Kalix developer platform is the industry’s first and only platform enabling anyone to create large-scale, high-performance microservices and APIs without having to perform everyday operations.

Kalix Abstractions

Kalix lets us focus on what’s most important in our development processes, abstracting away several of the tedious details.


In a typical serverless setting, we require a database to establish an explicit connection between the platform and an application to perform create, read, update, and delete (CRUD) operations. With Kalix, developers no longer need to worry about setting up database schemas, database management, or scaling the database as Kalix provides everything out of the box.

Kalix automatically manages the data stored in its distributed database without developers or operations personnel intervention. Kalix provides in-memory state data as needed, abstracting the complexities of database management to free developers from database maintenance.

Therefore, we do not need to be familiar with any database schemas, data caching software, or distributed data management techniques to use Kalix, which makes Kalix uniquely suited for data-centric applications.


Kalix understands the importance of APIs in developing serverless applications and microservices. As such, it uses an API-first approach that treats APIs as “first-class citizens'' so we can focus on API services and create data objects and structures that our services require—without worrying about how these data objects will persist.

Kalix abstracts these data objects from persistent storage to allow developers to concentrate on the API structures of their services. Using this API-first strategy, we can define how to expose the API and let the platform handle connectivity for our services.


With Kalix, we no longer need to worry about fine-tuning caching layers for our applications. The platform automatically takes care of data caching, allowing developers to focus on what we do best: developing services. This makes developing fast and performant applications a breeze.


It is challenging to scale an application in a typical traditional hosting environment, let alone have it scale automatically. The performance of any application declines when server resources do not rise according to service demand. This may crash the application, resulting in data loss and potential business loss for any organization.

Kalix understands that it can be challenging for any organization to scale its service quickly and securely. Kalix takes care of it for us by optimizing cloud resources to automatically make data available to be processed in memory when needed. Kalix makes it easy to build microservices that scale automatically based on demand.

In addition to its highly scalable and reliable distributed computing platform, many major brands worldwide use Kalix to develop high-performance, massively scalable systems.

Benefits of Abstraction

The benefits provided by Kalix abstraction include the following.

Save Time

Developers no longer must spend time dealing with unnecessary complexities of the underlying infrastructure required by their application that have nothing to do with the problem we’re trying to solve.

Using Kalix, we can focus on business logic rather than infrastructure details such as managing databases, servers, caching, scaling, and the network. Kalix frees developers to spend more time on actual business problems, accelerating the business delivery time.

Reduce Bugs

The presence of unwanted bugs in our applications can easily break them, impact the user experience, and ultimately disrupt business operations. This could be damaging to any organization’s reputation.

As each line of code has the potential to introduce bugs into an application, writing non-vital code only increases the chances of introducing these bugs and causing issues in our applications. Fortunately, the abstraction provided by Kalix ensures fewer non-vital pieces of code, leading to fewer bugs.

Increase Deployment Efficiency

Kalix makes it possible for developers to focus more on business logic and application deployment, making it easy for development teams to rapidly move from ideation to implementation and deploy products quickly.

Additionally, a lower number of bugs and a shorter development process results in fewer issues, shorter release cycles, and quicker time to market.

Less Infrastructure

Kalix handles most of the heavy lifting, such as managing servers and databases, scaling, caching, and the underlying infrastructure—all while hiding their complexities. The platform’s model eliminates the need to predict growth and purchase equipment. As a result, we pay only for what we use.


Abstract specifications describe what a program does without necessarily saying how it does it. Kalix, from Lightbend, removes this nonessential information, eliminating restrictions and the need to deal with complex implementation details.

Through abstraction, Kalix allows developers to build high-performance, low-latency applications without worrying about architectural complexity, database management, or developer operations.

Moreover, its flexibility means that its microservices solution is compatible with any back end, enabling you to work in your desired language without concerns for compatibility. This also makes it cost-efficient and seamless to adopt.

If easing development, speeding time to market, and saving costs sound appealing, visit Kalix today to learn more about how their advanced microservices technology can help you transform your product offerings.