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Coté Memo #075: Dealing with legacy code in a cloud native world
Get your lurn on - this weekend!
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As I mentioned last time, we stayed at the W in downtown Austin last week. It was nice! The “wet” (W-speak for “pool”) was nice with in-pool bar service.
Tech & Work World
Dealing with legacy code
— Coté (@cote) July 24, 2015
I’ve been working on a series of blog posts (which we’ll then slap into a PDF - hey, presto! Whitepaper!) on “the cloud journey.” Here’s an excerpt from the first part summarizing the challenges of “the legacy journey”:
These groups have a full portfolio of existing IT and applications that they must maintain and grow. There are many “obligations” owed to the past and they often operate under many more constraints than the other two types of teams. Their challenge with Pivotal Cloud Foundry is planning out how to methodically “slice off” parts of their existing applications and re-platform them as cloud native applications. These teams are metaphorically tasked with rebuilding the jet engine mid-flight.
Legacy teams are often looking for fixes to lingering, systematic problems they have (the relational database can no longer scale) and the effects of too much technical debt (“our system is so burdened and fragile that it takes weeks to do a release”). The challenge these teams have is that all of their time is taken up simply keeping their applications up and running, leaving them little time to work on new functionality in their application. Worse, when there is time to add in new functionality, the legacy system is so ponderous (and often poorly understood) that changing it takes much longer than it should.
To me, the challenges here are about balancing risk perfectly, knowing when to keep doing “the wrong thing” despite the allure of “the new thing.” Eventually, these teams have to choose either to “give up” or “go for it”: If the risks of making changes are too high, they must quarantine the applications in questions. Or, if the risks seem acceptable, the teams have to start systematically re-platforming and re-writing the backing services and applications themselves.
DevOps at Solarwinds
IBM Cloud: it’s the infrastructure, stupid - Little check-in on IBM cloud strategy with OpenStack, Cloud Foundry, and misc.: “Perhaps more importantly IBM was explicitly positioning to the effect that not all workloads are Cloud Native, 12-Factor etc. Enterprise developers are not used to building or running stateless apps.”
Office, messaging and verbs - “You don’t actually send email or make a spreadsheet - you analyze, delegate, report, confer, decide, track and so on. ”
35 Startups Providing Infrastructure For The On-Demand Boom - I’m getting the feeling that “on-demand” is the new synonym for “out-sourced,” but, like, highly automated with no middlemen and a mobile app.
Reborn in the cloud | McKinsey & Company - Reborn in the cloud
Dell is closely studying the EMC playbook - speculation about them spinning out SecureWorks and Boomi.
The Practice and Future of Release Engineering - Some metrics and practices used for releasing, and QA’ing.
Behind the scenes of 18F’s agile contract - Doing an RFP via a project in github instead of a Word doc.
The mobile web sucks - “Just looking at the stats for The Verge, our mobile traffic is up 70 percent from last year, while desktop traffic is up only 11 percent.”
Increasing your Agility: An interview with Dave Thomas - “I like to express it like this. Every team that develops with agility follows these steps: 1. Know where you are; 2. Take a small step towards where you want to be; 3. Evaluate what happened; 4. Repeat.”
Apprenda Raises $24 Million, Makes Added Container Support a Priority - “One of our biggest assets … is that we’re highly compatible with what you already have, so we focus solely on .NET and Java. They’re the two most important stacks within the enterprise.”
Kubernetes container tech hits v1.0. Is that a Tectonic shift I feel? - Much talk of this in SDT 38 as well.
Container Competitors Google, CoreOS, Joyent And Docker Join New Linux Club As Kubernetes Turns One - Forbes - “Is that all?” - a good primer on how to read a press release.
Capital One Out to Display its Geekdom with Open Source DevOps Dashboard - It’s fun seeing non-tech companies do this stuff. Also: “what’s in your dashboard?!”
Cisco CEO: ‘Brutal’ Times For IT Coming - Business Insider - Older piece, but shows declining revenue for tech giants.
IBM open sources apps in the cloud to boost software development - “By making Bluemix available this way, IBM will equip the developers of tomorrow with the capabilities and skills to join the workforce and create enterprise-class cloud applications at consumer scale, the firm said.”
Shamefaced Amazon admits to actually MAKING MONEY as cloud biz blooms - “For Q2, AWS brought in $1.82bn in revenue, which was 81.5 per cent higher than in the second quarter of 2014. The division’s operating income, on the other hand, was $391m, a 407.8 per cent annual gain.” That public cloud thing, who knows if it’ll make money. One wonder, though, how many costs are shared with the rest of Amazon: would things look so good if it was just AWS? I’m not saying they’d be bad - maybe they’d be better! - but it’s be interesting to see it stand-alone.
IDC: Industry-specific solutions to drive public cloud computing - “IDC predicts the cloud computing market to reach about $70 billion this year and the number of new cloud-based solutions to triple within the next four to five years….the biggest cloud computing verticals worldwide will be discrete manufacturing, banking, professional services, process manufacturing, and retail. IDC expects the five verticals to represent 45 percent of the market’s total spend.”
New Dell Cloud Manager Release Simplifies Management and Consumption of Cloud Services Across Organizations - “Dell Cloud Manager v11 features new state-of-the-art distributed blueprint support based on the TOSCA standard, simplifying portability and management of cloud applications and services throughout their lifecycle. New support for Windows Azure Pack and enhanced support for Microsoft Azure give Microsoft customers the first independent unified solution to centrally manage their combined private and public cloud environments. New automated scaling and recovery capabilities also provide added efficiency, helping to better satisfy service level requirements.”
HP slaps dress code on R&D geeks: Bin that T-shirt and put on this tie - someone (in the comments?) noted that this was for the EDS folks. But, still: really?
Fun & IRL
I say Amy last week. I wasn’t expecting to like it much (we just wanted to see a movie, and Kim wanted to), but it was actually good. You know, tragic and such, but good.
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