Catching up on the HOT links

Do you like words like: security - governance - PCI - regulation - SBOMs?! Then you should attend our talk series on cloud native app development in banks, insurance companies, and financial services. It’s online and, of course, free.

Relevant to your interests

  • The Quest for Better, Faster Deals - The highest quality deals are driven by strategy and vision needs at the buyer, the lowest by regulation needs and projects done by external consultants. I don’t know what “high quality deal” means, but it must be good. The conclusion: you want to sell to the business.

  • Reports Of OpenStack’s Death Greatly Exaggerated - Hmmm….I mean, I think it’s fairly exaggerated. the only market estimates (from the Flexera reports) show small share and y/y decline. But, there’s still a very active community/market in that slide of the cloud pie.

  • AI And B2B Marketing — Three Opportunities And Challenges To Ponder - “Half my advertising spend is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half; the trouble is I don’t know which half” is still the case after all these years: “most B2B organizations struggle to deliver basic content measurement and intelligence today — 47% of B2B organizations consider themselves beginners at tracking content impact metrics.”

  • Go Faster, Break Less: DevOps Transformation at HSBC - “An interactive account of HSBC Technology’s DevSecOps transformation programme featuring David Keane, Global Head of DevSecOps Transformation. This talk will provide rich insight into transformation from concept through to operational delivery, revealing the real and ‘in the field’ impact for employees and HSBC customers.”

  • 31 AI Prompts better than “Rewrite” - Prompts!

  • GPT best practices - OpenAI API - more prompt writing tips.

  • Mercedes-Benz’s Cloud Foundry (Tanzu Application Service) usage, from “Improving developer productivity with Platform as a Product,” June 9th, 2023 - “So what are we doing on a daily basis? We have multiple platforms running. We have platforms in our own Mercedes Data Center on-premise, and also on AWS. We have integration and production platforms on either environment. And to give you some numbers, we have around 300 application projects, 3,000 application instances, and around 1,500 platforms services, which we are providing at the moment and constantly growing. So what do we need to make all this happen? We need a great platform team. And of course, the ton of automation. So we are around eight people that’s not too much to operate all these applications and service instances.” –Roland Fetscher, Platform Architect, Mercedes-Benz AG

  • What is platform engineering? - “Here are the key pillars of platform engineering, as I see it: Self-service; Platform operations; Platform as product.” And: “at CWT we created a series of DevOps services like a CI/CD pipeline, self-service performance testing, an image service for pre-approved, hardened images (consumable via source templates or the built images in a variety of formats), as well as a container service built on Kubernetes. Every time we got more than one product to adopt a service, that was proof we’d avoided duplication and created efficiency. The structure of the services also optimized for self-service, which accelerated developer velocity. With one of our DevOps services, we reduced the round-trip cycle for performance testing from 24 hours to a few minutes, as teams were based on opposite ends of the world. We also cut 30+ days off the release timeline for new applications and major releases.”

  • What Is Platform Engineering, and What Does It Do? - Lori Perri at Gartner defines platform engineering (Oct 2022): “In short: Platform engineering implements reusable tools and self-service capabilities with automated infrastructure operations, improving the developer experience and productivity. This technology approach utilizes reusable configurable application components and services. The benefit to users is in standardized tools, components and automated processes.”

  • Citi to cut 5K jobs citing tech initiatives - Not good for the pro-AI crowd. // ‘Citi’s technology transformation plans, which Mason said are in the execution stage, are driving efforts to reduce headcount…. Over time, “we will no longer need the same level of people that we have at this particular phase,” Mason said. “We’re reducing people even further … as we use that technology to automate a bunch of activities that we have to do manually today…. The bank is in the process of retiring legacy tech platforms. It’s also moving its wholesale credit risk platforms to a common underwriting process, and will no longer need thousands of people over time because of a standardized approach, Mason said.’

  • Change Fatigue In Digital Transformation: Where Has All The Value Gone? - Ways to keep the digital transformation alive: Contextualize business outcomes; Share the effort; Share the value; Conduct holistic load management; Target smaller, more frequent wins; Have a playbook; If you can, adjust incentives.

  • Change Management In Digital Transformation: There’s No Tunnel, There’s No Light - “21% of global services decision-makers supporting their organization’s digital transformation cited implementation of new processes and capabilities as one of their greatest challenges.” // …79% have more important problems, maybe even culture change totes chill.

  • Singapore Bank DBS: A Blueprint For Digital Transformation In Finance - Nothing on how these changes were done, but a brief “what” of the strategy.

  • Celebrity photographer Chris Floyd shares six pieces of career advice everyone can learn from - “I think that anything generic is fucked now. Anything where a client thinks: ‘We need a picture of a woman who is eating a salad’, say, or ‘laughing with a laptop’. If it’s not a specific person, it’s just a representation of an idea; they can just do that now in AI.”

  • Billionaire’s Secret Buyout Formula: 110 Instructions and an Intelligence Test - Older piece, but a look at the general patern of PE firms buying tech companies to optimize and then draw out more revenue. The thing sort of glossed over is that you get a portfolo of these little companies to get cash to buy larger ones, pay off debt, and pay yourself. It’s like buying a bunch of dentists offices and bundling them together into one business.


With some selections from the day notes.

  • Standard American expat requests for visitors from the States: Large bag of CostCo chocolate chips; Kraft brand mac and cheese (like 6 boxes?), just the regular macaroni one; CostCo bag of pecans.

  • Booked my VMware Explore travel, to Las Vegas. I haven’t been there in a long time - four, five years? So many happy RedMonk memories from there. One of the best: that time James Governor lost his shit about the PDF standard at dinner with Mark Cathcart as a rando hanger-on.

  • When I refer to analysts reports (Forrester, Gartner, IDC, 451 Reseach, etc., etc.) I reference the analyst shop as the author, e.g., “Gartner seems to be saying…” I feel bad each time I write this: there are actual people writing these reports. Sometimes I reference the people, especially in presentation footnotes. But, it’s a universal, industry style to just list the analyst shop name. In fact, when you get official permission from those shops to use their content (something you need to do when you’re a vendor, even if you’re quoting public material - I don’t know: it’s just the norms), they strip out the authors and just put the shop name. That tells you a lot about their business mode, style, and overall vibe.

  • There’s always thing I should do, but few that I need to do.

Logoff,, @cote,,