Selçuk Cihan

About Me

I'm a freelance software engineer

Building (and deprecating) software is my passion. As a former Amazonian devoted to helping customers and solving problems, I bring a strong sense of ownership and a track record of delivering results. With over four years of experience developing serverless apps on AWS, I have a proven ability to take on technical duties from operations to development and architecture. I’m a certified AWS solutions architect, who has worked as part of globally distributed teams of engineers in the past few years.

Keywords: AWS Serverless TypeScript Python NodeJS


Daniel Vliegenthart - Tech Lead at

“Through this letter, I wish to outline Selcuk Cihan’s responsibilities during his time working on and certify his excellence as senior software development engineer.

I had the pleasure of working closely with Selcuk for almost 3 years, starting in January 2020, during which he has proven his capabilities in every single aspect of his role at our company.

During his time at, he has worked on various mission-critical software systems, from customer-facing graphQL APIs, to complex serverless execution orchestration on AWS, data monitoring, priority queue implementation and microservice design and implementation in general.

I’ve been most impressed by his exceptional ability to tackle every phase of software development with in-depth knowledge, confidence and clear communication. This starts with his incredible analytical thinking and how he structures this thought process into concrete requirements, expectations, considerations and specifications. I cannot emphasize enough how good Selcuk is at communicating in a clear and structured manner. Github issues, pull-request descriptions and code documentation were always clearly outlined, with the right level of detail to convey all critical information to his peers. He has also been pivotal in tackling new features and projects where the requirements were not yet clearly defined, to guide the team from brainstorming, to feature delivery, to maintenance and monitoring.

Beyond the requirements stage, Selcuk has shown again and again that he thrives in all areas of the software implementation phase. His coding style is stellar, his expertise in various programming languages, including Python, JavaScript and TypeScript, is extensive and his knowledge of testing is top-tier. Furthermore, the entire team relied on Selcuk’s deep knowledge of AWS services, integrations and new feature releases.

I can highly recommend Selcuk for any future ventures in his field of expertise and have no doubt that he will thrive in any company and team that values building exceptional software.”

Original reference letter is available at

Decebal Dobrica - Software Architect at

“I had the pleasure to manage and to work with Selcuk Cihan for the past 2 years while at Tellimer. He rose brilliantly to all challenges thrown at him both technically and communication wise. I would say his superpower is his communications skills, both writing and talking. As a manager I had very little to ask of him as he is independent and knows how to exercise his ownership of a technical product by documenting the developments, the current state, technical debt and possible improvements to a system he works on. I relied heavily on his ever improving know-how around aws technologies in particular, but not exclusively, using typescript/javascript sdks.”

Ian Watt - Co Founder,

“We brought Selçuk on as a contractor almost three years ago at Tellimer. The fact that he was with us until very recently is a testament to the quality of his work product and his commitment as an engineer. He was the perfect remote contractor in many ways. His communication skills are top, he is very much a self-starter who can get stuck in on work with minimal guidance or oversight, and his code quality (and documentation!) is exceptional. After a few weeks of working with us, everyone on the team considered him an honorary core team member.

Selçuk was the most experienced/knowledgeable AWS engineer on our team. Whenever we encountered a thorny issue or had a service that needed to be built where time-to-market and stability were paramount, Selçuk was the first engineer selected to implement it.

As a company, we have been moving away from remote contractors toward full-time, local hires, but if we weren’t, Selçuk would still be on the team!”



Serverless Inc. (2023 - )

  • Created the Python AWS Lambda SDK for Serverless Console, which is an observability platform for applications running on AWS Lambda.
  • Implemented CI/CD flows on github actions.
  • Automated tests that validate end to end business logic and performance.
  • Tech stack: Python, Serverless, Lambda, AWS

Scriber (2021 - 2022)

  • Created the serverless GraphQL backend for, which is a platform for financial writers.
  • Implemented payments with Stripe Connect.
  • Built analytics application to provide the financial writers with KPIs.
  • Tech stack: TypeScript, Serverless, Lambda, AppSync, DynamoDB, RDS, Stripe, EventBridge

Tellimer (2019 - 2021)

  • Created the API and step functions orchestrator that forms the machine learning pipeline for, which is a machine learning SAAS offering.
  • Implemented serverless workflows for ingesting 3rd party financial articles for
  • Architected an article recommender and an article summarizer for
  • Integrated with Stripe for SAAS subscriptions.
  • Built a serverless app that periodically maintains the sitemap for various web apps.
  • Created GraphQL APIs with AppSync, connecting various data sources like DynamoDB & RDS.
  • Created serverless workflows using AWS Step Functions to integrate with external services.
  • Tech stack: TypeScript, Python, Serverless, Lambda, API Gateway, DynamoDB, Stripe, EventBridge, AppSync, Cognito, Datadog

Toptal (2018 - 2019)

  • Worked as the lead backend developer for a non-profit client.
  • Developed a REST API, fully serverless on AWS.
  • Optimized cost resulting in more than 50% saving on AWS bill.
  • Improved performance by reengineering caching on CloudFront/S3.
  • Mentored developers and reviewed pull requests.
  • Tech stack: Python, Serverless, Lambda, API Gateway, DynamoDB, VPC, SQS, CloudWatch, S3, CloudFront


Software Development Engineer

2017 - 2018

  • Developed and maintained the orchestration platform that processes Amazon’s catalog updates. The platform is able to handle tens of thousands of TPS, enabling the finest and largest catalog on earth. Uses Kinesis as the backbone and routes updates to the catalog to relevant downstream services.
  • Added further functionality to a Node.js service which is a high TPS REST service for diff analysis.
  • Refactored an orchestration engine which consumes Kinesis and calls downstream services such that the application can be started without any dependencies, thus enabling performance testing of the core.
  • Supported the reconciliation engine (Java 8) that generates the retail catalog.
  • Carried out live migrations of several web services without downtime. Successfully deprecated multiple legacy services in an effort to simplify the overall architecture and enable catalog growth.

Tech stack: Java, Perl, AWS, Node.js, Linux, Spring, Agile, DevOps, PostgreSQL, ElasticSearch, JavaScript, Docker


Senior Software Engineer

2013 - 2017

  • Supported the workflow engine (C#, Windows service) serving banking applications such as loans, customer complaints etc.
  • Set up elastic to index workflow engine documents, enabling powerful search mechanisms for the end user.
  • Designed and implemented a workforce management system that empowers the bank’s operation center. The application uses Microsoft’s solver foundation to solve the task assignment problem. This project got BAI global innovation award.

Tech stack: Microsoft .Net, C#, MSSQL, ElasticSearch, REST, Agile, Unit testing, JavaScript, DevOps

Ziraat Teknoloji

Senior Software Engineer

2011 - 2013

  • Designed and implemented workflow engine running on top of Oracle, serving over 100,000 workflow instances daily.
  • Served as scrum master and mentored junior developers.

Tech stack: Microsoft .NET, C#, WinForms, WPF, Oracle


Bogazici University

BS. Computer Engineering (3.57/4)


Amongst the top universities in Turkey, BU has a lovely campus with spectacular views over the Bosphorus.

Studied wireless networks and computer vision in addition to the foundations of computer science. Graduated Cum Laude.

Bogazici University

MS. Computer Engineering (3.80/4)


Research interests:

  • Distributed systems
  • Graph theory

Thesis titled “Parallel maximum flow solver for multi-core machines”.


AWS Certified Solutions Architect Professional

AWS Certified Solutions Architect Professional

AWS Certified Developer Associate

AWS Certified Developer Associate

A Little More About Me

Hofstadter's Law: It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law.

I’m comfortable taking on work in any tech stack, though Serverless, TypeScript and Python have been recurring themes in the past few years for me. For details, have a look at my Curriculum Vitae (which may refer you to this page, in that case be conscious about the infinite loop you are in or you might never reach out to me!). You can also watch me introduce myself on youtube.


NodeJS Serverless Next.js React Angular NestJS Django Flask Spring


TypeScript Python JavaScript Java C# Perl C C++


Lambda AppSync API Gateway EventBridge CloudWatch SNS Kinesis SQS Step Functions Cognito IAM CloudFormation CloudFront EC2 Athena Route53


CI/CD Operational excellence Agile

Storage Solutions

AWS DynamoDB AWS S3 AWS RDS PostgreSQL Oracle SQL Microsoft SQL Server


Linux Docker Elasticsearch Redis Algolia DataDog Stripe