SXSW: Talking with AllDigital

March 11, 2014

Im currently downtown at SXSW after having had lunch with a customer, AllDigital.  AllDigital delivers digital content from the cloud to multiple endpoints for corporations and entertainment properties.   They are here at SXSW to support some of their customers and prospect for new ones.

Before Tim Napoleon, AllDigital’s Chief of strategy, took off for his next meeting I grabbed a couple of minutes of his time.  He explained what they do and why they made the trek from LA to Austin.  My take away, both mobile and video are big deals and we are only going to see more.

The two projects that Tim mentions

Pau for now…


OSCON: Talking OpenShift, RedHat’s Platform as a Service

August 22, 2013

Last but not least in my series of video from last month’s OSCON is an interview I did with Steve Citron-Pousty, Developer Evangelist for Red Hat’s OpenShift PaaS.

Take a listen to what the ever-entertaining Steve CP has to say:

Note: As with my interview with Neil of Inktank, I used Youtube’s feature that is supposed to fix an unsteady camera and the result gives the video a hallucinogenic feel (witness the slightly undulating stairs).

Some of the ground Steve covers:

  • What is OpenShift and Platform as a Service?  How is OpenShift different from other PaaSs?
  • OpenShift is “polyglottal:” it supports PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby, Node js and Java (with Java you get JBoss and Tomcat).  It also supports MySQL, Postgres and MongoDB right out of the box.
  • How they work with APIs and how APIs allow devs to create “situational apps.”
  • Steve’s Crystal Ball time:  in 3-5 years all developers will be using a PaaS (witness their wins with Ebay/PayPal, Accenture and DoD) + Git + a NoSQL data store.

Reference —  The rest of my OSCON interviews:

 Extra-credit reading

  • Blog:  Krishnan Subramanian: Making the Move to OpenShift
  • ZDnet: Red Hat opens OpenShift PaaS cloud for business

Pau for now…


Dell Acquires Enstratius — So what do they do?

May 6, 2013

Last week at DevOps Days Austin, I did a couple of interviews with John Willis (aka @botchagalupe), VP Client Services and Enablement at Enstratius.  The first video dealt with devops and the idea of culture as a secret weapon in the war of hiring.  The second one was about Enstratius the company, which coincidentally today Dell announced it was acquiring.

I’m very excited about the move because, besides the great technology, with Enstratius we are getting some top talent like John, James Urquhart, George Reese, Bernard Golden, David Bagley and many more.

Take a listen as John explains what exactly it is that Enstratius does:

Some of the topics John covers:

  • Enstratius’ common open API structure
  • Governance: e.g. Role based access, a federated view of resources, encrypted key management storage yadda, yadda
  • Direct integration with Chef and Puppet
  • Integration points with APM companies like AppDynamics and New Relic

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Chattin ’bout Chatter, The new new thing from salesforce.com

August 30, 2010

A couple of weeks ago a group from salesforce.com paid a visit to Dell.  Among other things, they came to discuss their new product “Chatter” that Dell has recently launched internally and who’s virtues Michael Dell has tweeted.  Among the salesforce crew was Sean Whiteley, VP of product marketing.  I was able to get some time between meetings with Sean and learn more about Chatter.

Some of the topics Sean tackles:

  • How Chatter has done since its launch on June 22.  What type of traction they’ve seen with customers.
  • How Chatter differs from other internal social media platforms (hint: not only can you follow people; records, objects and information within your business applications have feeds as well, e.g. your notified when a presentation changes or a sales deal you’re following moves to a different stage.)
  • How the idea of Chatter came up. What role chairman Marc Benioff and his use of Facebook played.
  • Currently Chatter is tied closely to CRM but it will be tied to other apps going forward.
  • They believe that many more folks will use Chatter than usesalesforce.com.

Extra Credit reading:

Pau for now…


PowerEdge C410x — Whiteboard topology

August 5, 2010

In the last of my GPGPU/PowerEdge C410x trilogy I offer up a whiteboard session with the system’s architect, Joe Sekel.

Some of the topics Joe walks through:

  • How does having remote GPGPUs connected via cable back to a server compare in performance to having the GPGPUs embedded in the server?
  • The topology of the PCI express  x16 (16 lanes per link) plumbing: from the chipset in the host sever through to the GPGPU.
  • The data transfer bandwidth that x16 Gen 2 gives you. 

Extra-credit reading:

Pau for now…


Ubuntu, the Cloud and the Future — Neil Levine

July 27, 2010

After the cloud summit last week at OSCON, I sat down with Neil Levine of Canonical to see what was in store for Ubuntu cloud-wise (Canonical is a partner of ours in our cloud ISV program).  Neil is the VP of Canonical’s corporate services division which handles their cloud and server products.

Here’s what Neil had to say:

Some of the topics Neil tackles:

  • The next Ubuntu release “Maverick Meerkat” and its geek-a-licious launch date: 10.10.10.
  • Look for Maverick to make Eucalyptus even easier to deploy and use.
  • Data processing and data analytics is one of the key use cases in the cloud and Canonical is looking to move up the stack and provide deep integration for other apps like Hadoop and NoSQL.
  • What are some of the areas of focus for next year’s two releases i.e. 11.04 and 11.10.
  • Project ensemble: what it is and what its goals are.

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


My quick spiel on the cloud

July 25, 2010

At OSCON last week I ran into a compadre from a previous life, Fred Kohout.  Fred is now the CMO at UC4, a pure play software automation company, and he, like I, was in Portland to attend OSCON and the Cloud Summit.

At the summit Fred did to me what I’ve done to so many others, he got me on the receiving end of a video camera to talk about where Dell plays in the cloud and how we see the cloud evolving.

You can check out Fred’s blog from the Summit where he posted my video as well as the interview he did with another former compadre, Peder Ulander, CMO at cloud.com.

Don’t touch that dial

If you’re interested in OSCON be sure to stay tuned.  I’ve got four more interviews from the event that I will be posting soon.

Pau for now…


The OpenStack design summit in review

July 22, 2010

Tuesday after the OSCON cloud summit I sat down with Rick Clark over a well deserved beer.  Rick is the chief architect and project lead for the OpenStack compute project that was announced on Monday.

Last week I interviewed Rick on the first day of the inaugural OpenStack design summit and I wanted to catch up with him and get his thoughts on how it had gone.  This is what he had to say:

Some of the topics Rick tackles:

  • How it went engaging a very large technical group (100+) in an open design discussion patterned after an Ubuntu Developer Summit.
  • Some of the decisions he thought would be no brainers, turned out differently e.g. OVF (open virtualization format) and keeping the storage and compute groups separated.
  • Since the summit involved representatives from over 20 companies, some of them competitors, how good were people at putting away their business biases/agendas?
  • How far they got (hint they got requirements from everyone for the first release).
  • They’ve already gotten their first code contributions.
  • How they plan to build a community: actively looking to hire a community manager.   In the meantime its actively growing and in a week they’ve gone from 10 people in the IRC channel to 150 on Tuesday.

Extra-credit reading:

But wait there’s more…

I got back from OSCON last night with a fist full of videos.  In addition to the above, coming soon to a browser near you are the following interviews:

  • Brett Piatt with more OpenStack goodness
  • J.P. Rangaswami, Chief Scientist at BT — Nature doesn’t require SLAs
  • Simon Phipps about his new company ForgeRock
  • Neil Levine, VP at Canonical about what’s in store for Ubuntu.

Pau for now…


OpenStack Compute – talking to the chief architect

July 18, 2010

Rick Clark used to be the engineering manager at Canonical for Ubuntu server and security as well as lead on their virtualization for their cloud efforts.  He’s now at Rackspace and is applying much of what he learned while at Canonical to his new gig as project lead and chief architect of the just announced OpenStack Compute.

Rick talked to me about what he brought with him from Canonical as well as the details behind OpenStack Compute.

Some of the topics Rick tackles:

  • What is the OpenStack Compute project (hint its a fully open sourced IaaS project)
  • Leveraging what Rick learned from the Ubuntu community, including a regular six month cadence.
  • Rick’s goals for design summit: develop a roadmap for the first release, spec out the software and spend the last two days prototyping and hacking.
  • Why they went with the Apache 2 license and why not AGPL?
  • The Rackspace API (NASA had already started to switch from the Amazon API before combing
  • The project’s core principles: open, open, open

Extra-credit reading:

Pau for now…


Talkin’ to the project lead of OpenStack Object Storage

July 18, 2010

The first code that is available from the OpenStack project, and its available today, is the code for the storage effort, “Object Storage.”  The man at the technical helm of this effort is Will Reese of Rackspace.  Will’s daytime job is development manager and system architect for Rackspace’s Cloud Files, the source of the code for Object Storage.  Will and I grabbed some time at last week’s design summit and he briefed me on the project:

Some of the topics Will tackles:

  • Object Storage is based on the open sourced code from Rackspace’s Cloud Files.
  • What attracted NASA to Cloud Files (think scale).
  • Rackspace will lead the project to get the community kick started but is looking for the community to take over.
  • Storage and Compute will each have their own tech boards made up of members from Rackspace, NASA and the community.
  • In the second half of the interview Will takes us through a quick overview of the cloud files architecture which is written in python, leverages eventlib, and borrows concepts from memcache and some  key-value stores –>  To learn more, check out Will’s talk at OSCON this Wednesday.

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Introducing OpenStack — an open source cloud platform

July 18, 2010

Today Rackspace and NASA announced OpenStack, an open source cloud platform that they are collaborating on and building a community around.  Last week the inaugural OpenStack design summit was held here in Austin with 20 companies from around the world, including Dell, participating.

During one of the breaks I grabbed sometime with Rackspace’s cloud president, Lew Moorman to learn more about the effort and get his thoughts:

Some of the topics Lew tackles:

  • What is OpenStack (an opensource set of technologies for building clouds…)
  • Why Rackspace decided to opensource their code .
  • How Rackspace got hooked up with NASA and what each brings to the party.
  • Taking Nebula’s core foundation and adding some elements from Rackspace’s side in order to put together a release candidate that should be available to the community this Fall.

Extra-credit reading:

Pau for now…


NASA’s chief cloud architect talks OpenStack

July 16, 2010

At the inaugural design summit for OpenStack, an open source set of technologies for building clouds, Nebula’s chief architect Josh McKenty played a prominent role in leading the assembled folks.  I caught Josh during a break and chatted with him about Nebula and NASA’s role in the newly announced OpenStack project.  Here’s what he had to say:

Some of the topics Josh tackles:

  • What is Nebula (hint: NASA’s, primarily IaaS, cloud computing platform)
  • The history of Nebula and how it morphed from nasa.net.
  • Why NASA wants a cloud – and the importance of having an elastic set of resources.
  • NASA and Nebula’s use of open source and how it has evolved (they don’t simply fling tarballs over the wall anymore and they can use licenses other than the “NASA open source agreement”)
  • A match made in heaven:  NASA has put together a strong compute platform and was looking to building a real object store,  Rackspace had a strong object store and work looking for a new compute platform.

Extra-credit reading:

Pau for now…


Ubuntu founder stops by Round Rock

February 19, 2010

My favorite cosmonaut-coder Mark Shuttleworth stopped by our offices this morning for a visit.  Mark is the founder of both the Linux distribution Ubuntu and its commercial sponsor Canonical.   Mark and I sat down in the lobby and caught up.  Here is a short interview we recorded.

Some of the topics Mark tackles:

  • Where Canonical is currently working with Dell
  • Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud (to build your “own little EC2″)  and how its doing
  • Passing the CEO mantle to Jane Silber in March
  • The 10.4 Ubuntu release Lucid Lynx and what to expect: a strong cloud focus on the enterprise side and a lot of shiny new bling on the desktop as well as making the desktop “social” (e.g. Tweet straight from your desktop)
  • What Ubuntu is doing in the Netbook space
  • What excites Mark the most in technology today and why cloud is like HTTP in the early 90′s

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Talking to the Head of VMware’s Cloud Business

January 7, 2010

Here is the second in my three part series on Virtualization and the cloud.  Today’s entry focuses on the 800 pound gorilla in the virtualization space, VMware.

At last month’s Gartner’s Data Center conference, right after his standing room only presentation, I grabbed some time with VMware’s Mr. Cloud, Dan Chu .  Hear what he had to say:

Some of the topics Dan tackles:

  • What VMware is seeing customers actually doing to take advantage of the cloud today both with regards to public and private clouds.
  • Some polling data he collected during his talk based on the ~300 folks who attended:  90-95% were virtualizing, 15% had an active private cloud project,  5-10% had a public cloud project.  (This is pretty representative of what Dan’s generally seeing.)
  • The three phases of cloud:
    • Phase I: Standardizing and virtualizing an environment.
    • Phase II:  Adopting private cloud from a management stand point: getting to self service and automation in terms of provisioning a new service/collapsing the time it takes to get a new image out to an end user or developer from weeks to minutes/ implementing charge back, dynamic capacity planning and management.
    • Phase III: Thinking about or planning how to leverage the public cloud in a fully compatible way.
  • A short history of VMware: how they’ve moved from desktop and server virtualization to VM management and optimization to enabling their platform for private clouds and public cloud providers.
  • Their “recent” acquisition of Spring Source and how it fits in.

Stay tuned next time for a summary of Gartner’s virtualization presentation from their data center conference.

Pau for now…


Microsoft, Virtualization and the Cloud

January 4, 2010

Happy New Year to all!   For the first week of this new year I’m going to focus on virtualization and the cloud.

Kicking off this mini-series is an interview I did last month at the Gartner DataCenter conference with David Greschler, director of virtualization strategy at Microsoft.  I caught up with David right after his talk at the conference.

Some of the topics David tackles:

  • The ability to treat IT as a service.  Before virtualization, specific workloads were tied to specific devices.  Thanks to virtualization you can create pooled resources which is the beginning of IT as a service.
  • Microsoft’s Dynamic Data Center Toolkit:  This tool overlays on top of HyperV and System Center (their management tool) and allows you to look at and manage your own datacenter as a pool of compute power.  It  is a step towards the private cloud and can also be used by hosters.  It will also allow for moving workloads between public and private clouds.
  • Microsoft is focusing on giving you knowledge at the app level.  System Center tells you whats going on inside not just at the hypervisor level.
  • Windows Azure:  a large scale cloud that you can use to build apps for and have hosted on this environment.
  • The ability also to take workloads into Azure over time.
  • Image based Management: Taking the  technology of  the desktop-targeted App V and applying it to the server.  Will allow you to encapsulate apps and move them from one OS to another without having to re-install them.  You will no longer have 1000s and 1000s of virtualized images that you will have to manage and monitor, instead you will very few golden images of these VMs and you will be able to simply put these workloads in and take them out.

Extra credit viewing:

Stay tuned next time for Dan Chu of VMware to hear what they are up to.

Pau for now…


Talking to Roger of Citrix about now and Xen

December 11, 2009

Last month at the Interop/Web 2.0 I was able to drag Citrix’s  Roger Klorese away from booth duty for an interview.  Roger is a Sr. Director at Citrix who works on Xen server and the Essentials product family.  Here is what he had to say:

Some of the topics Roger tackles

  • What Roger has been focusing on this year — Free Xen server.  Launching the offering (there have been 200K downloads this year)and then bringing more features into it.  What comes with it for free and what are add-ons that you get thru the Essentials family.
  • In the networking space Citrix announced a version of their netscaler app delivery server as a virtual appliance.
  • Managing “OPVs” (other people’s VM’s)
  • What Roger is most excited about:
    • Growing the datacenter into the cloud  – Xen.org recently released the Xen cloud platform which is a full cloud distro, with a management stack based on open sourcing the Xen server stack.
    • Early next year they are releasing the Xen client type 1, a bare metal client hypervisor.

Pau for now…


What is ATT up to in the cloud?

December 9, 2009

A couple of weeks ago I was in New York to visit customers and attend the co-located Interop and Web 2.0 events.  One of the attendees/participants I got to know there was Joe Weinman, VP of ATT’s Business Solutions.  Joe has been focusing a lot on the cloud lately so I thought I’d put down for posterity his thoughts and explanation of what ATT is up to in this space.

Some of the topics that Joe tackles:

  • ATT’s evolving strategy involves mix of managed endpoints and a variety of network services as well as a variety of services in the cloud.
  • ATT’s services range from infrastructure services like “Synaptic hosting,” storage as a service and compute as a service thru a variety of SaaS apps like unified comms and collaboration,  SAP,  Oracle ebiz suite, Seybold and JD Edwards.
  • They have a large platform as a service offering that is used by tens of thousands developers creating at mobile enterprise apps.
  • They target a wide variety of endpoints e.g.  iphones,windows mobile devices,  netbooks, black berries  all the way thru tele-presence rooms.
  • How ATT delivers on both front end and back end architectures.

Pau for now…


3tera’s CEO and Chairman: Barry Lynn

December 7, 2009

Last but not least from the videos I took last month at Cloud Expo is the interview I conducted with Barry Lynn of  3tera.  At a high level Barry positions his company as a software company that offers a turnkey cloud platform.  See what else he has to say:

Some of the topics Barry Tackles

  • 3tera sell’s their flagship product AppLogic three ways
    • License it to people who want to run private clouds behind their firewalls [competitors: VMware, people building it themselves]
    • License it to service providers who want to offer public cloud services but don’t want to build their own cloud (there are 30 SP’s worldwide offering clouds on the 3Tera platform) e.g. KDDI [competitors: people who build it themselves]
    • Virtual private data center business where people can lease a data center.  They do this with DC partners [competitors: any service provider]
  • What they are doing with KDDI and their “KDDI cloud server” (hint: they are provisioning stacks e.g. ruby, .net, java…)
  • What’s coming up
    • Their App store is in beta and will be in production in Q1 of next year (ISVs publishing to the 3tera cloud).
    • Cloudware release: their orchestration and management layer will be offered separately next year and can be used on top of anyone’s virtualization, computing fabric or cloud engine.

Pau for now…


Adam of Oracle talks about Oracle VM and the Cloud

November 16, 2009

A couple of weeks ago on the show floor of Cloud Computing Expo in Santa Clara I ran into Adam Hawley, Director of product management for Oracle VM.  When Adam finished his stint in the Oracle booth he sat down with me to talk about what was going on at Oracle in the world of virtualization and the cloud.

Some of the topics Adam tackles:

  • Oracle VM, Oracle’s sever virtualization and management platform, while based on Xen is all Oracle on top of it.
  • The Virtual Iron acquisition which is in the process of being incorporated within the Oracle portfolio and is slated for release in 2010.
  • The Cloud as a higher level of automation on top of virtualization, compared to what traditional virtualization has provided.
  • Where Oracle will play in the cloud space (hint: think private).
  • The Oracle assembly builder that Adam was showing off at the show.
  • Given Larry’s views on cloud computing, is “cloud” a dirty word at Oracle?

Pau for now…


Learning about Heroku – The Ruby PaaS Solution

November 9, 2009

Kicking off my series of videos from last week’s Cloud Expo in Santa Clara, here is a chat I had with Oren Teich, of Heroku.  Heroku, if you’re not familiar is a 2-yr old Platform as-a-Service company targeting Ruby developers.  Oren recently joined Heroku as their head of product management and had the following to say:

Some of the topics Oren tackles:

  • Where the name “Heroku” comes from and why they were going for a Japanese sounding name.
  • Why did they choose Ruby and why did they go with a cloud-based plaform?
  • How Heroku is similar/different from Google App Engine and Engine Yard.
  • The majority of the folks who have created the 39,000+ apps on the site are hobbists.   That being said, the folks who pay their bills are those who are creating social media apps for platforms like Facebook, Twitter and the iPhone.
  • How Heroku makes their money: they charge as you scale and they charge for add-ons.
  • What they plan to concentrate on in the year ahead

Pau for now…


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