Cloud-Native Cookbook – beyond “survival is not mandatory”

I started a new booklet project, the Cloud Native Cookbook.

The premise is this:

The premise of this book is to collect specific, tactical advice transitioning to a cloud-native organization. The reader is someone who “gets it” when it comes to agile, DevOps, cloud native, and All the Great Things. Their struggle is actually putting it all in place. Any given organization has all of it’s own, unique advantages and disadvantages, so any “fix” will be situational, of course.

This cookbook draws from actual experiences of what worked and didn’t work to try to help organizations hack out a path to doing software better. While we’ll allow ourselves some “soft,” cultural things here and there, each of the “recipes” should be actionable, tangible items. At the very least, the rainbows and unicorns stuff should have concrete examples, e.g., how do you get people to actually pair program when they think it’s a threat to their self-worth?

As with my previous cloud-native booklet, I have this one open for comments as I’m working on it. It’d be great to get your input.

Here’s some slides I’ve been using around all this.

Webinar Recording: Understand the What, Why & How of Digital Transformation Featuring 451 Research

Earlier this month I did a webinar with Nick at 451. He does a great job summarizing all the digital hoopla going around and I finish up with, predictably, why and how Pivotal can help out there, along with a few customer examples. Check it out!

Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.9 out

The new version of Pivotal Cloud Foundry (“PCF” as folks like to say) is out. It has a whole slew of updates across the board.

My selective highlights:

  • Google Cloud & Azure support, so you’re all multi-cloud ready (still with OpenStack, VMware, and AWS support).
  • Will run 250,000 containers concurrently; in addition to scaling based on  CPU usage, you can now auto-scale on HTTP Latency and HTTP Throughput.
  • Updates to Spring Cloud, Zipkin, and Spring Boot Actuators for diagnostic stuff.
  • MySQL updates, esp. for multi-zone support in AWS.
  • “Tasks” one time processes that are an initial cut at “serverless”
  • A slew of security updates.

See more – much more – features and details in Jared’s blog post wrapping the release up.

Singapore’s DBS Bank selects Pivotal Cloud Foundry

According to the bank, the built-in automation of Pivotal’s cloud platform allows it to focus on delivering differentiated value, instead of being caught up with systems management and IT resource procurement. This means that DBS will be able to quickly deliver services, as well as build and update next-generation applications in order to deliver a better banking experience to users.

Another Pivotal Cloud Foundry customers. Banks seem to like it.

Source: CIO-Asia – DBS Bank leverages Pivotal to innovate at start-up speed

What I’m looking forward to at SpringOne Platform

The biggest cloud native conference is coming up at the first week of August, SpringOne Platform. To plan out my time I took at look at the sessions. Here’s what I’m looking forward to and what I think you, dear readers, will find interesting as well. Doing a list like this, of course, ends up excluding some awesome sessions, so be sure to check out the talk list yourself as well.

Also, if you’re interested and haven’t registered yet, be sure to use the code pivotal-cote-300 to get $300 off.

Dealing with legacy

Almost every conversation I have with large organizations involves a discussion about dealing with legacy software. While you may not be running JFK era IT, you probably have to deal with legacy. Here’s some sessions on that topic:

Cloud Native Coding

Moving to The New, New Thing requires different ways of architecting and coding your software. Here’s some sessions that go over those new ways:

Case Studies

While cooked up demos of Pet Stores and Breweries are education, I’m most interested in hearing tales of what’s actually happened out in the world. Here are some of the case studies that look interesting:

The Usual Chuckle-heads

And, to highlight talks from my team:

(And, remember: if you want to come, you can get $300 if use the code pivotal-cote-300 when you register.)

Better ways of developing software or, coding like a unicorn, government edition

I’m often asked to come speak on, well, the topic of “tell us about the new, interesting stuff out there that makes software development better…but don’t be pitching me anything.” This is my most recent cut at that kind of talk.

You can check out the slides as well.

See these slides and the government edition of them too. This presentation changes slightly each time I give it. Here’s the first, rehearsal run of it as well.

Cloud Native, the why and what

We launched the Austin Cloud Native Meetup this week, on March 2nd. Marcello and I gave talks, first defining what cloud native is and then doing a demo of what a cloud native setup looks like.

Here’s recordings of the three parts, an intro, defining “cloud native,” and the demo:

Intro

Cloud Native, the why and what

Check out the slides as well.

Demo

Up Next

We don’t have the next meetings scheduled, but we do have people committed to giving talks. Diego Lapiduz said he’d come talk about the work 18F is doing with cloud.gov (you may remember him from a Lords Of Computing podcast episode and the frequently cited ATO reduction of 9 months to 2 days). And we’ll also have Amit Likhyani come down a reprise his talk from the Dallas Cloud Native Meetup, “Tibco’s Journey on Cloud Foundry”.

So, keep your peepers peeled – and sign up with the MeetUp group – and we’ll see you next time.

The platform for keeping promises – a logical architecture for Pivotal Cloud Foundry

Check out my brief (~15 minutes) discussion with Alex Williams at The New Stack about how we’re thinking about the architecture of Pivotal Cloud Foundry. In addition to giving an overview of what Pivotal Cloud Foundry is and the cloud management and PaaS capabilities it has, I go over a way of thinking about the layered architecture (and why you’d care) that Andrew has been talking about recently.

There’s a longer version of this in my recent talk from Gartner ADDI as well.

Cloud Native Promises in the Land of Continuously Delivered Microservices – Gartner AADI 2015 Talk

I gave a talk at Gartner AADI, US going over the need for organizations to become good at software (you know, our usual thing at Pivotal) and some thinking we have about the three pillars of becoming a software defined business (software defined delivery, DevOps, and microservices) as well as the “contracts and promises” way of looking at what Pivotal Cloud Foundry does. I manage to jam it all into 30 minutes. Here’s the abstract:

If software is eating the world, software capability is the disruptor’s advantage and the disrupted’s vulnerability. Continuous Delivery, Microservices and DevOps are three labels that describe aspects of the same phenomena; the principles and practices of high performing organizations that deliver highly available software, rapidly, at scale. This presentation catalogs the capabilities that allow organizations to move quickly, reliably and economically in an end-to-end infrastructure-to-application platform; these Cloud Native advantages outlined as promises and contracts.

In addition to the slides, check out the video recording from Gartner, they’ve got them a fancy interface with the video and slides they gots!

Greenfield cloud projects, webinar recording

The recording of my webinar on greenfield cloud projects is up. It’s based on the first part of my series on getting a good cloud strategy in place and executing it. There’s two more webinars coming up, on working with legacy applications and IT department transformation.

Here’s the slides if you want those.

Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.6, getting beyond the blinking cursor into the application layer

There’s a new release of Pivotal Cloud Foundry out this week. We’ve been seeing great pick-up from customers, and the nature of conversations I’ve been seeing while visiting them has been changing from operations, IaaS-driven topics to discussions about improving application development and delivery. This release also reflects that shift “up the stack.” Here’s my brief take on how things are going for Pivotal Cloud Foundry.

The most typical path to using Pivotal Cloud Foundry

First, this is how I see most customers arriving at Pivotal Cloud Foundry:

Who does Pivotal see as their toughest competition? According to Watters, that distinction belongs to AWS. Cloud customers often believe that AWS itself is enough. [James] Watters says that there wouldn’t even be the concept of cloud-native apps without Amazon, but “people need more than just Amazon to be successful.” Watters believes that some of Pivotal’s best customers are those who first tried to creates platforms themselves, but then asked “what’s the right thing to do for my organization?”

The rest of the piece is a good, brief overview of the new feature in Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.6.

What I see in this release is a movement “up the stack” to address application architecture and development concerns. You can see this in the incorporation of Spring Cloud (which supports, among many other things, a microservices approach), support for .Net (almost every large organization wants and needs this for the way they develop applications), and the numerous integrations with ALM tools (like Cloudbees, GitLabs, etc.).

For many years – and still! – the focus of “cloud” has been on the infrastructure layer: setting up the “operating system” for the cloud, your big datacenter, and everything that results in that magical blinking cursor:

I think of this as the “blinking cursor” problem. You know that softly pulsing cursor: it’s the result of millions ­—if not billions! — of dollars spent on cloud projects. These “private cloud” projects see companies redoing how their IT department provides infrastructure. They move from physical to virtual management; move from manual ticket processing to self­-service, automated provisioning; and after efforts that must have seemed like building all of the furniture for a new IKEA store with just a pocket knife, they might end up with their own cloud. And then, after all of this, they’ve gotten the blinking cursor up! The servers are ready to use! Now the hard work of designing, developing, deploying, and managing the applications that run the business starts. There is little wonder that 95% of folks in [a poll asking “what went wrong with your private cloud project?”] were not completely satisfied with their private cloud projects.

I still see much of the conversation centering around getting the blinking curser up, and too little on how to create and manage good applications. So, obviously I like our new positioning “up the stack,” not only providing application-centric services, cloud-ified middleware, and the operations capabilities needed keep those application up and running.

In addition to the actual product, you can see this reflected on the team (the evangelist/advocate/community team) I’m on where we’ve added people who focus on explaining how to do better software development, in addition to the more operations-centric people we started with.

Momentum: customer and ecosystem growth and character

Momentum wise, I measure Pivotal Cloud Foundry based on customers and the overall Cloud Foundry ecosystem.

Customer wise, we’ve gone from about $40m in bookings in 2014 to a $100m annual bookings run-rate this year. Those are two, slightly different type numbers, but you can get a feel for the amount of business we’ve been doing, and more important, the high growth and fast traction we’re getting. What I like about out customer base is that they’re everyday, big brands and companies. This not only means I can better explain what I do to my non-tech friends and relatives, but also means we have a sustainable customer base: these Global 2,000 customers aren’t going away anytime soon, esp. if they keep up the strategy that brought them to Pivotal Cloud Foundry: transforming to a software defined business.

There’s a Cloud Foundry Summit this week in Berlin and it evidenced the ecosystem momentum around Cloud Foundry, the open source project that Pivotal Cloud Foundry is based on. There’s now just north of 50 members. When you look at those logos notice how many non-tech companies are on there: it’s still mostly tech companies who want to use or extend Cloud Foundry, but there’s a delightful number of non-tech companies who want to support the platform that’s supporting their business. And, of course, the work with Microsoft to support .Net brings that whole ecosystem very close as well. As I mentioned above, many of the every organization I talk with really wants .Net support. Another interesting thing to watch is growth in use of Azure; that’s an option that I hear companies exploring a lot now-a-days, and, indeed, as Microsoft said in the press around this release, “[t]he demand for Azure was so high that we already have Fortune 100 customers building their next-generation applications with Pivotal Cloud Foundry on Azure.”

Obviously, working at Pivotal I’m highly biased on all this. Still, I think there’s good evidence that things are panning out. My main hope, as always, is that we can help improve the state of software, globally, and, thus, improve how organizations are operating.

More on Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.6:

Avoiding screwing up your cloud strategy: the greenfield journey

I’m doing a series of webinars based on my cloud native journey blog series, see the slides above (once the recording posts, I’ll embed it here as well!).

The gist of this series is my collection of advice on getting your cloud strategy right, mostly for large organizations. It starts with defining why you’d care (custom written software can now be used as a core competitive advantage, like never before), what the goals are (getting good at custom software development and delivery), and then gives advice across three different phases (greenfield, legacy, and organization transformation), or parts of the “maturity cycle” (a phrase I didn’t really use in the series).

Check out the first webinar on Nov. 5th at noon central, with two more coming in December, on the 1st and then the 15th.

Cloud Native Journey Series

I’ve been working on a series of blog posts on “the cloud native journey.” I put that in quotes because it’s admittedly a cheesy marketing phrase. The point of it is: if you’re looking to start using all these new cloud-based ideas for improving how your company does custom software development, what’s that look like. You know, what’s the “journey.”

Cutter Survey

All four parts are now up:

  1. The introduction to the series
  2. The Purity & Tyranny Of A Blank Screen: The Greenfield Journey – see also a recording of my webinar on this section, also the slides.
  3. Dealing With The Stuff That Makes All The Money: The Legacy Journeycheck the recording of the webinar on this section, too. Also, the slides.
  4. The Cloud Native Journey: Enterprise Transformation – check out the recording of the webinar on this part. Also, the slides.

There’s also a PDF of the whole thing if you prefer that format.

Tell me what you think of it!

What are normal people doing with continuous delivery?

//player.vimeo.com/video/120746550?wmode=opaque&api=1

My latest Pivotal blog post is up, it re-caps a presentation I did recently covering what “the market” is doing with continuous delivery.

There’s a lot of opportunity, the glass is half full. See the slides over in my previous post on this talk.

Also, check out the recording of the full talk (it has some bonus material on containers recent role in CD) from HeavyBit, embedded above.