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Track: Kubernetes and Cloud Architectures

Location: Churchill, G flr.

Day of week: Wednesday

What are the cloud native trends to watch for in 2020? What might the Kubernetes landscape look like over the next 3 years?  

The cloud native movement, underpinned by technologies such as containers and Kubernetes, has enabled our ability to build and deploy far greater complex distributed systems that can dynamically scale to meet our business demands. As Kubernetes matures we are seeing the rapid rise of other architectural patterns in FaaS platforms and service mesh technologies. There’s also been a growing microservices movement to push beyond server side domains to leverage these same patterns on front-ends. What implications might this have for the fundamental design of Kubernetes and Faas?  

Come join us for real world examples of the challenges and successes of deploying into Kubernetes and leveraging FaaS platforms, and explore exciting advances in the containerisation and virtualisation sphere. This track will leave you with practical knowledge that can be applied within your organisation, and also thought provoking ruminations about where DevOps is headed over the next couple of years.

Track Host: Crystal Hirschorn

VP Engineering, Global Strategy & Operations @CondeNast
Crystal Hirschorn is currently VP Engineering, Global Strategy & Operations at Condé Nast which is best known for its portfolio of global brands Vogue, Wired, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker and many more. She oversees a globally distributed engineering organisation and leading the technical strategy for building unified technology platforms deployed across the globe to meet the demands of more than 450 million monthly users. She led the teams at Condé Nast which built and deployed a Kubernetes platform that now operates globally.
 
She has nearly two decades in the Technology industry spending the majority of her career in the Media, Technology and Publishing sectors.  The majority of her career has been as a hands-on software engineer with more than 15 years experience tackling the challenges of building complex system architectures, scaling software and infrastructures. She’s a resilience engineering advocate and long-time practitioner and advocate of Lean, XP and DevOps practices to create a successful engineering culture.  

10:35am - 11:25am

Lessons Learned from Reviewing 150 Infrastructures

Since April 2018 we've had the opportunity to perform a structured review of the architectural and operational choices of 150 platform teams. In this talk I'll explore some themes, talk about common mistakes, and give some advice on how to avoid these yourselves. The review tool we use is part of the AWS Well-Architected program, but this session is relevant whether or not you're an AWS user.

Jon Topper, CTO / CEO @scalefactory

11:50am - 12:40pm

The Evolution of Distributed Systems on Kubernetes

Cloud native applications of the future will consist of hybrid workloads: stateful applications, batch jobs, stateless microservices, functions, (and maybe something else too) wrapped as Linux containers and deployed via Kubernetes on any cloud. Functions and the so-called serverless computing model is the latest evolution of what started as SOA years ago. But is it the last step of the application architecture evolution and is it here to stay? During this talk, we will take you on a journey exploring distributed application needs and how they evolved with Kubernetes, Istio, Knative, Dapr, and other projects. By the end of the session, you will know what is coming after microservices.

Bilgin Ibryam, Product Manager and former Architect @RedHat

1:40pm - 2:30pm

A Kubernetes Operator for etcd

Etcd is a distributed key-value store, best known for being the data store used by Kubernetes itself. But what if you use etcd directly in your application, and you need it inside a Kubernetes cluster? Stateful applications, databases in particular, have traditionally posed a challenge for deployment and management in Kubernetes. We solved this problem with an Operator — A software package that extends the Kubernetes API and encodes operational knowledge specific to etcd.

In this talk we overview etcd and why running it in Kubernetes is difficult. After outlining what an Operator is and how it addresses our problem, we discuss ways of writing Operators, why we wrote our Operator the way we did, and talk though how it works for etcd. By the end of the session you'll know about Operators, the class of problems they can solve, and how to get started making one for yourself.

James Laverack, Solutions Engineer @JetstackHQ

2:55pm - 3:45pm

Kubernetes is Not Your Platform, It's Just the Foundation

Kubernetes helps us tame sprawling microservices architectures and address increased operational complexity. Kubernetes gives developers abstractions and APIs to deploy and run their services. 

But there is a price to pay in terms of both the in-house operational expertise required and the learning curve for application teams. The elephant in the room is that to run, maintain and evolve Kubernetes, we likely need a dedicated Kubernetes team.

Is the tradeoff between better operational tools and introducing a new dependency layer on the path to production for application teams worthwhile? Are we making life easier for application teams or instead reducing their end-to-end ownership? 

Regardless of all the technical benefits that Kubernetes undoubtedly brings, team interactions are still key for successfully delivering and running services. We will look at a couple of organizations that have succeeded by focusing on reducing the cognitive load for application teams. 

Unfortunately, many organizations see Kubernetes as “the” platform, rather than just a technical foundation for a true internal platform. In the worst case, they mandate all teams to adopt Kubernetes, regardless of both the application teams’ and the platform’s maturity levels. 

Successful Kubernetes adoption requires thinking about what a platform really means and learning which team structures and interactions work well. And evolve them over time.
 

Manuel Pais, IT Organizational Consultant and co-author of Team Topologies

4:10pm - 5:00pm

Cloud Native is About Culture, not Containers

As a developer in the IBM Garage, Holly Cummins works with customers who are trying to shift their businesses to the cloud and become more cloud native. Their dream is more effort higher up the value chain, more innovation, and greater adaptability. What’s getting in their way isn’t the technology—wrapping something in a docker container (usually) isn’t that hard. Instead, it’s figuring out what the real problem is, the structures that have been put in place to manage risk and the relationships between teams that trip companies up. It turns out there's quite a few anti-patterns on the journey to cloud. Holly shares stories of customers struggling to get cloud native and all the ways things can go wrong.

Holly Cummins, Senior Technical Staff Member @IBM Garage

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