When middle-management is screwing it all up – Pivotal Conversations

Whether it’s “DevOps,” “digital transformation,” or even “cloud” and “agile,” middle-management is all too common an issue. They simply won’t budge and help out. This isn’t always the case for sure, but “the frozen middle” is a common problem.

With a big ol’ panel of people (including two folks from RedMonk), we talk about tactics for thawing the frozen middle.

The WTF on Cloud-Native from Kenny Bastani and James Governor – Pivotal Conversations

Check out this talk on “cloud-native”:

We’ve got all your answers to “what exactly is ‘cloud-native’?” in this episode with special guests Pivotal’s Kenny Bastani and RedMonk’s James Governor. Kenny gives us a good overview of what cloud-native is, as Coté summarizes it: handling the configuration and automation for your applications along with all the supporting frameworks and platforms to do that. We then discuss the process (“culture”) angle, the origin of Spring Boot, the concept of “lock-in,” and if public cloud is needed or not. Bonus: serverless talk!

Automation at Goldman, The Computer takes out four people

Today, nearly 45 percent of trading is done electronically, according to Coalition, a U.K. firm that tracks the industry.

Pay:

Average compensation for staff in sales, trading, and research at the 12 largest global investment banks, of which Goldman is one, is $500,000 in salary and bonus, according to Coalition. Seventy-five percent of Wall Street compensation goes to these highly paid “front end” employees, says Amrit Shahani, head of research at Coalition… Investment bankers working on corporate mergers and acquisitions at large banks like Goldman make on average $700,000 a year, according to Coalition, and in a good year they can earn far more.

Automating those $700,000+ meat-sacks:

Goldman Sachs has already begun to automate currency trading, and has found consistently that four traders can be replaced by one computer engineer, Chavez said at the Harvard conference. Some 9,000 people, about one-third of Goldman’s staff, are computer engineers.

Finding the things to automate:

Though those “rainmakers” won’t be replaced entirely, Goldman has already mapped 146 distinct steps taken in any initial public offering of stock, and many are “begging to be automated,” he said.

To be all double-turns-out about the grim automation stuff, in theory, this could mean hiring more programmers and people who support those robots, bringing down those big chunks of cash from “rainmakers” and spreading it down to “lower” grade staff. Of, you know, the bank can just keep that money and trickle it up to execs and share-holders.

Source: As Goldman Embraces Automation, Even the Masters of the Universe Are Threatened

Global IT spend at $2.4 trillion in 2017, 3.5% growth, IDC

Worldwide revenues for information technology (IT) products and services are forecast to reach nearly $2.4 trillion in 2017, an increase of 3.5% over 2016. In a newly published update to the Worldwide Semiannual IT Spending Guide: Industry and Company Size , International Data Corporation (IDC) estimates that global IT spending will grow to nearly $2.65 trillion in 2020. This represents a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.3% for the 2015-2020 forecast period.

Link

Growing eyeballs at Facebook, some product management tips

Some intersting history of how Facebook grew users. Of course, this the case study is for a free service, that focuses on a high volume of users. I.e.: not an enterprise sales business that charges $3m+ per user-cum-customers.

Contextualizing aside, there’s some good product thinking:

Better know what your product is good for:

Knowing true core product value allows you to design the experiments necessary so that you can really isolate cause and effect.

Getting people to realize your product is useful, understanding and the wanting the value-prop:

Once you understand core product value you can create loops that expose that over and over again. You have to work backwards from ‘what is the thing that people are here to do?’ ‘What is the A-ha moment that they want?’ and giving that to them as fast as possible.”

The clock is ticking, the cash is burning:

“Startups only have so many opportunities to run an experiment in the product, and they’re also time bound by the cash they have in the bank. With that said you need to run experiments that matter.” “Experiments that count when you are using smaller samples have to be incredibly thoughtful.”

You’d think that would favor large organizations who have the scale of people, time, and money…if only they can switch over to this way of thinking.

Your best customer is one you already have:

Retention is the single most important thing for growth.” “Retention is the number one thing we focus on at Facebook. You can’t trick users into doing that.”

Link

Coté Show: Biz Dev, Defining an application, the atheist eagle scout, with JJ Asghar

Another interview, mostly on cloud and other dorky topics:

Having worked in cloud since before cloud, JJ and I talk about what companies are using various cloud things for. We also discuss the conceptual history of cloud, and what exactly he does as a “business development” person at Chef.

Subscribe, tell your friends, or just download the episode directly.

Software Defined Talk: Snap’s cloud billions, Google’s social, Monitoring Startups considered hard, DHS wants your passwords

This week’s episode is out:

Snap is looking to spend billions on AWS and Google Cloud over the next five years. We talk about what exactly that could be for, then check in with Google’s social strategy and thermostat strategies; meanwhile, the America Fuck Yeah crew wants to start gathering passwords at the boarder. Also, Brandon lays out the case that an open-core monitoring startup is a hard row to hoe.Also, Baltimore is not in Maine. (But Coté is pretty sure it actually is.)

Subscribe, tell your friends, or just download directly. Don’t miss the extensive show notes with plenty of bonus links.