Day #1 => Cloud Expo & Cloud Bootcamp

Thanks to Larry Carvalho and Krishnan Subramanian for lining me up to speak at the kick off bootcamp keynote and for a PaaS Session at the Cloud Expo Boot Camp. I had a great time and was able to cover some great material with the audience. It was great to hear a number of companies and people diving into PaaS Technology and learning about what this technology can do.

The audience, above all was very open to the idea of openness with technologies that are open. See the theme there? 😉 There were a few resounding themes to things people would like to see added to the Open Source PaaS Solutions such as Cloud Foundry, Iron Foundry and Open Shift. Here are a couple of these;

  • People want to have continuous deployment or continuous integration features added to the PaaS Capabilities so that the PaaS doesn’t just deploy code blindly. The two companies that came up that have some capabilities around continuous deployment and integration are AppHarbor and CloudBees. But the stronger ask from the audience was for there to be some type of integration with one of the open offerings like Cloud Foundry or Open Shift. Some discussion also followed around these capabilities being a default “service” within a PaaS or even IaaS offering.
  • The other thing that brought up a lot of questions was the architecture behind the various PaaS Solutions. I walked the audience through a description based on what I wrote up in “Cloud Foundry Architecture – Removing the Operating System Barriers with PaaS Part 4“. It generally tends to fit similar architectures in the PaaS realm and most of the audience liked the idea of how PaaS operations are working.
If you attended either of my talks and want to check out the PaaS Providers that came up during questions and discussions, here’s the one’s I can remember:
  • Tier 3 – Enterprise grade IaaS and PaaS w/ the Web Fabric Product. This company I currently work for, they’re doing a rock solid job with the offering.
  • AppFog – Very application focused and IaaS autonomous, i.e. you can pick AWS, HP Cloud, or Azure with more options to come in the future. I’ve worked with these guys also and they too kick ass!
  • AppHarbor – .NET focused PaaS running atop AWS, provides a free tier and continuous integration and rollback features. I haven’t worked for these guys, but I’ve met everyone on the team and they’re all top notch. Props guys! 🙂
  • CloudBees – Java focused PaaS with Enterprise focused CI/CD capabilities with Jenkins.
  • Heroku – These are the guys who kicked off the whole PaaS thing a few years ago. They started Ruby on Rails focused but also cover Java and Node.js too.
  • EngineYard – A solid PaaS offering running primarily atop AWS with some IaaS style features available too.
  • Windows Azure – Microsoft’s cloud offering, with a lot of updates around Node.js lately. They’ve traditionally focused on .NET, but lately have put as much or more focus on Node.js. Looks like things are improving in the Azure Camp.

More to come tomorrow with DeployCon at the Cloud Expo.  Until then, cheers.

Re: Cloudcamp Seattle

Summary Statement:  CloudCamp rocked!  I got to meet a lot of smart people and have a lot of smart conversations!

Ok, so I probably shouldn’t write the summary statement first, but I’m not one for standard operating procedure.  But I digress, I’ll dive straight into the cloud topics and the event itself.

The event kicked off with an introduction and lighting talks by Tony Cowan, Mithun Dhar, Steve Riley, John Janakiraman, Margaret Dawson, and Patrick Escarcega.  Margaret and Steve really stood out to me in their talks, I’ll be keeping an eye on any future speaking engagements they may have.

One of the quotes that led off CloudCamp during the lightning talks was, “If you’re still talking about if the cloud is secure…” you’re already behind, out of touch, missing the reality of it, or simply not understanding the technology.  After further conversation though, it really boils down to the most common excuse.  The statement “the cloud isn’t secure enough” translates to “I’ve got my fingers in my ears and am not listening to your cloud talk”.

Margaret Dawson from Hubspan really took a great stance with her lightning talk.  The talk was titled “To Cloud or Not To Cloud” with “Don’t buy the cloud, buy a solution” as the summarized idea.  The other thing that she mentioned during her talk was she likes adding “AASes” to cloud computing, such as “BPaaS”.  I’ll admit I laughed guiltily along with a few dozen others and forgot to note what BPaaS stands for.  Whoops!  🙂

An attempt at creating a generalized definition of cloud computing was also made.  It was stated that we can, as a community, agree on the following definitions of cloud computing.  The definition involved three parts:

  • Cloud computing is on demand.
  • Cloud computing can be turned off or on as needed.
  • Cloud computing can autoscale without issue to handle peaks and lulls in demand.

Another funny statement came from Dave Neilsen (@daveneilsen), CloudCamp Organizer, “I agree, the cloud isn’t right for everyone” to which someone in the crowd jokingly hollered back “You’re Fired!”  The energy in the audience and each of the sessions was great!

After the lightning talks Dave Neilsen led the conference with a cloud panel to field some questions.  A few topics related to this wikileaks thing 😛 came up along with some others.  I tired diligently to take good notes during this time, but it was a bit fast paced and I left the note taking to be more involved in listening.

These activities kicked off the overall event, which then led into everyone breaking out to different sessions depending on topics created by the attendees.  The sessions included (and I may have missed one or two);

  • Open Source Software in the Cloud
  • Best Practices for Low Latency
  • Intro to Cloud Computing + Windows Azure
  • How does a traditional Microsoft Stack fit in Amazon Web Services (AWS)
  • Google Cloud Services
  • What are your personal projects?

As another aspect of this review I wanted to pull in a few tweets that mentioned or had something useful in relation to the #cloudcamp + #seattle hashtags from last night.

…with that, my cloudcamp review is fini.  Hope to see everyone at the next Seattle Cloud Event!