The missing context from that new Woodward book

In their self-hagiographys, people involved in the Trump presidency suddenly become astonished by the incompetency of the adminstration.

And then, Woodward’s conclusion:

But now, I’ve come to the conclusion that the ‘dynamite behind the door’ was in plain sight. It was Trump himself. The oversized personality. The failure to organize. The lack of discipline. The lack of trust in others he had picked, in experts. The undermining or attempted undermining of so many American institutions. The failure to be a calming, healing voice. The unwillingness to acknowledge error. The failure to do his homework. To extend the olive branch. To listen carefully to others. To craft a plan.

Also, the review writer:

Most of this Administration’s greatest disasters have been policy-related—but policy of this sort was inevitable with a person like Trump. What his racism did not infect, his corruption most certainly did; we are left with nothing except Trump himself and the political party that was broken enough to nominate such a man.

Such a weird time in American civics.

Original source: Bob Woodward’s Bad Characters

New VMware kubernetes distro packages

The new kubernetes distro packages/products from @VmwareTanzu. There’s four bundles of the distro, associated management tools, and integrated developer stuff.

Also:

the vSphere-Tanzu combo does not need to run the complete stack. “They can bring their own networking, they can bring their own storage,” D’Paiva explained, adding that it should also accelerate modern workload transformations because it ties directly into the vSphere platform that many enterprises are already running today.

“With this drop-in infrastructure it takes about an hour for an existing IT administrator to simply get started with Kubernetes and go,” D’Paiva said.

Original source: Simplify Your Approach to Application Modernization with 4 Simple Editions for the Tanzu Portfolio

Multi-cloud as dragging workloads across clouds hampered by data gravity

Organisations should not make portability a primary driver for adopting Kubernetes, Meinardi explains, as the likelihood that an application, once deployed, will move to a new infrastructure provider is actually very low.

This is simply because databases and data lakes are expensive to move, weighing down applications. The truth is that most organisations don’t think moving this data is worth the hassle so end up sticking with the same provider.

Gartner analysts question Kubernetes portability credentials

Relearning to change, improve

This is the process of relearning, which comes with its own challenges: (1) you must be willing to adapt and be open to information that goes against your inherent beliefs (2) you may need to to learn how to learn again and (3) you must create an environment for relearning to happen in a meaningful, yet often challenging, space outside your existing comfort zone. The point of relearning is that you’re trying to get better information and learn to see, sense, and listen differently, to respond and act differently.

Original source: Book Review: Unlearn by Barry O’Reilly

Move from the Bay Area, get paid less

But employees who worked at VMware’s Palo Alto, California, headquarters and go to Denver, for example, must accept an 18% salary reduction, people familiar with the matter said. Leaving Silicon Valley for Los Angeles or San Diego means relinquishing 8% of their annual pay, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing internal policies.

Original source: VMware Cuts Pay for Remote Workers Fleeing Silicon Valley

Little boxes

McLuckie has explained that with containerised applications running on an Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) model, code could be written in a hermetically-sealed unit, from which it could be deployed, whole, into disparate environments — a test cloud and a production cloud, for instance.

So far, this standardization of packaging and app architecture looks like one of the most useful effects of kubernetes. Using kubernetes comes with an implicit architecture model, a way of instrumenting applications (making them observable and manageable in production), and a defined life-cycle. It’s not perfectly clear-cut, but there are enough constraints in how you package up, deploy, and run apps in kubernetes that you don’t have many options.

This gives you an architecture you can just accept and start using: you don’t need to spend months – years, often – debating an enterprise architecture in your organization, coming up with many competing stacks, and then 3 or 4 years later sort of deciding on one but having to live with all that variation (e.g., the state we’re currently in).

Less grandiose, it means less architectural position papers you have to write, less meetings to go to, less arguments with rival ideas, and less time spent building and enforcing the policy of your enterprise architecture. Instead, you can spend all that time making the application better, and, thus, the business better. No CEO ever cared which kubernetes distro you ran, how much you paid to build or licenses it, or if it’s multi-cloud. They care if it helped them make money.

The same applies to ops: there’s now one way (sort of) to understand and manage it all. In contrast, we current have many different ways and tools, often customized within large organizations. That much variety ends up costing too much, and slowing things down more than you’d think.

Original source: VMware VP: Kubernetes as the ‘new IaaS normal’

Sharp edges

“We’re seeing Kubernetes emerging not just as an infrastructure service abstraction, but as a dominant control plane for driving workloads, whether those workloads are running in Linux application containers or pretty much anywhere. And that’s an absolute delight.”

The downside is that “it’s a fancy system and it has some really sharp edges.” This brings us back to the goal of simplifying the developer experience. “Creating a comfortable environment that uses the power of the system, that doesn’t force them to deal with all these sharp tools that can cut them all the time, is very important,” said McLuckie.

Original source: VMware supremo Pat Gelsinger makes peace with Microsoft, and Virtzilla pitches Tanzu to the Spring crowd

Portability isn’t a thing with kubernetes

Kubernetes facilitates portability because it helps standardize our software development life cycle and, most importantly, our operating model. However, it also adds management overhead to our organization, it forces us to engage with commercial vendors and to completely rearchitect our applications. Implementing portability with Kubernetes also requires avoiding any dependency that ties the application to the infrastructure provider, such as the use of cloud provider’s native services. Often, these services provide the capabilities that drove us to the cloud in the first place.

In conclusion, the portability tax is high. Make sure to pay it only for applications that truly need it and that are likely to switch infrastructure provider at some point. For all the others, don’t choose Kubernetes on the basis of a universal portability principle, just because it “sounds right”. On the contrary, adopt Kubernetes for agility, scalability and for modernizing your application architectures.

Original source: Why Adopting Kubernetes for Application Portability Is Not a Good Idea, Marco Meinardi, Gartner

Getting ready for change sure pays off when things change

Strong digital foundations are already helping leading companies adapt to the crisis quickly. One global retailer that invested for years in true omni-channel sales and delivery had already offered curbside pickup at 100 of its stores. When forced to close its physical stores owing to COVID-19, in just 48 hours it was able to expand its curbside service to 1,400 stores while maintaining a majority of its revenue. Meanwhile, many of its competitors struggled to shore up their online channels.

Black Swan thinking seems to be the principal that surviving long-term is all about avoiding the rare, but reliable occur disaster. When times are good, things are easy. You have the prepare for the worst, because eventually the worst will happen.

Original source: Accenture’s CEO: 5 rules for rethinking digital transformation during COVID-19

Gartner on Google Cloud

How about Google? Gartner said it is also strong for “every use case,” apart from edge, which is a rather strong caveat. It has won developer “mind share” via open source Kubernetes and TensorFlow, and according to Gartner, “closed a number of critical capability gaps between GCP and Azure.”

The analysts were not happy with GCP’s availability record, however. “Google’s much-vaunted network capabilities have been the source of a number of GCP outages during the last year, with devastating impact on customers,” they wrote.

The fact that GCP is “a small fraction of overall Google revenue” is also a concern, presumably on the basis that if parent company Alphabet were to decide to change track, the cloud product set might no longer keep pace with its competition.

Based in Tim Anderson’s summary, it seems like the MQ matches everyone’s general sentiment and folklore about the public cloud providers.

Public cloud is just becoming normal IT, with the usual benefits and faults. Ongoing, as negatives are found, the framing will likely be: it’s better than the alternative. That is, whatever faults public cloud has, the overall benefit will likely be better than sticking with majority on-premises.

Original source: Gartner on cloud contenders: AWS fails to lower its prices, Microsoft ‘cannot guarantee capacity’, Google has ‘devastating’ network outages

Giving developers the tools to do security checks

Synk and other cloud security vendors have focuses on container image registries as a weak link in the cloud-native application development workflow. Aqua Security, the Boston-based infrastructure security specialist, released a similar scanner earlier this year targeting Docker container images and Harbor, an open source container image registry project backed by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation.

In the never ending quest to bundle up all the steps in software development into the developer phase. It started by pulling in QA and product management with XP, project management with Scrum; operations, configuration management, release management, and monitoring with DevOps and then cloud native; security here. Sometime it’ll need to be compliance.

Original source: DevSecOps Emerges as a Cash Magnet