Now that we won’t be going to conferences for the foreseeable future, there has been a rush to replicate events in the virtual realmView in browser »
The New Stack Update

ISSUE 217: Virtual Handshakes

Talk Talk Talk

“Kubernetes is something powerful and impactful, but has too many components and moving pieces.”

Moe Abdula, vice president of engineering, SaltStack.
Add It Up

Eighty-five percent of open source contributors expect companies to be involved with the open source movement according to SlashData’s “State of the Developer Nation Q4 2019.” But, when asked about specifics, only 44% of contributors think companies should contribute and provide support to open source communities.

Does this mean companies should finance independent developers or have their own employees work on community projects? Believers in open source business models desperately want the former to be true. Yet, a more realistic goal is for companies to encourage their developers to spend part of the workday contributing to open source, whether or not a project is managed internally by the company itself.

Of the 17,000 developers surveyed, 59% contribute to open source software and 41% do not. Remarkably, two-thirds of the non-contributing developers still expect companies to support the open source movement to some degree. This is a reminder that many developers consume open source without actually giving back.

If you have opinions about the components of good open source corporate citizenship, please take our survey on open source in the enterprise. In partnership with The Linux Foundation’s TODO Group and co-sponsored by VMware, the third annual survey, which is open for responses right now, looks at the effectiveness of Open Source Program Offices (OSPOs) and policies that govern open software development.

What's Happening

Rare is the DevOps team that has the bandwidth to manually parse through and prioritize what needs to be fixed among hundreds, if not millions, of application-error alerts. This includes distinguishing between minor glitches and those errors that can bring to a screeching halt an organization’s capacity to meet its customers’ needs and expectations.

A viable error-monitoring system should, ideally, automate the communication of error data in a way that indicates what must be done to make a fix.

The system must also cover a wide range of data types and code. Error monitoring is not worth much if it can only communicate errors on JavaScript servers, while many of your other applications are running on Python.

In other words, error monitoring must also be code-centric.

In this episode of The New Stack Makers podcast, Ben Vinegar, vice president of engineering for error-tracking software company Sentry, discusses what error monitoring means today and how, among different versions of monitoring today, detecting errors has emerged as a critical capability for organizations today.

Why Error Monitoring Must Be Close To Your Code Path w/ Ben Vinegar from Sentry

Virtual Handshakes

In case you missed it, KubeCon+CloudNativeCon EU is going virtual this year. After originally scheduling the Amsterdam event for March, and then optimistically rescheduling it for August, the Cloud Native Computing Foundation saw that such a gathering would be still too chancy, with too many unknowns until then, so it decided to make it a virtual event, to be held Aug. 17 – 20. Interestingly enough, the U.S. KubeCon is still scheduled for Nov. 17 – 20 in Boston. So fingers crossed we can get COVID-19 sorted by then.

Now that we won’t be going to conferences for the foreseeable future, there has been a rush to replicate events in the virtual realm (“cyberspace” we used to call it). Everyone is trying to figure out what a virtual event should be like, and everyone comes with up a slightly different approach. 

In the middle of April, Snyk put on All The Talks, which collected many of the technical sessions that people had prepared for KubeCon. It was on a 24-hour schedule, both to give everyone their own time slot, but also to ensure people in each time zone get fresh content. We were not so crazy about this approach, given some of the talks of most interest to us were held at 3 a.m. in our time zone. In these cases, we would recommend conference organizers make the recordings available after the event itself, say on YouTube, so people in all time zones can enjoy them.

Redis, for its own virtual event earlier this week, RedisConf 2020, stuck to one-time zone (Pacific Daylight Time) and even offered a virtual theater for attendees (or, rather, their avatars) to gather and look at the slides (the presentation itself was off to the side of the virtual stage). We’re not sure what the point was for the stage, or the avatars, but it did give the proceedings the feel of being at an actual event. It even offered a break room where attendees could go hang out with other attendees. The folks behind Deserted Island DevOps even took this idea of virtual space even more seriously, hosting its event on the Animal Crossing simulated world. We heard a lot of positive comments about that setting too.

And the virtual conferences keep coming. Maybe because they are easier to organize and book (no location scouting or catering meals), or maybe because marketing folks are nervous about not having any real-world conduit to meet potential clients, but virtual conferences seem to be packing our calendar these days. Next week alone, there is Microsoft Build, Percona Live (A lot of good database info here), Cloudbees Connect, HashiCorp’s Cloud Operating Model Virtual Day, and Weaveworks GitOps Days. And we’re not even counting the countless one-off webinars also taking place. 

These all look good too. So, just as we used to be out in the hallway at some mega-conference, looking over the schedule to see which session to drop into next, now we are wondering how to juggle these events in such a way to gather the most interesting information for you, our faithful readers. If you see our avatar out there, in “cyberspace,” drop by and say hello. 

Let’s Take Our Conversations about Microservices to the Next Level

A few weeks back we had a great discussion on the TNS Context podcast on monolithic architecture design versus microservices, with Lightstep’s Ben Sigelman and Google's Kelsey Hightower. This week, in a contributed post, Eran Levy, a software architect at Cyren, weighs in. He argues that it is not an either-or approach and that instead, we should fit the best approach to the job at hand.

Sudo Update Offers Python Plugins, Extended Logging, Auditing

Most of know “sudo” as a simple command that gives the Unix user full superuser control over the server, without all the messy security implications that come with logging into root. Fewer know that for the past 25 years, Todd Miller has been the maintainer for the Sudo project, which has been sponsored for the last decade by his employer One Identity. More than just a simple command line, we learn, Sudo can also be used to "have control over who's allowed to do what and with which privileges" with fine-grain permissions. The newest release, Sudo 1.9, offers a number of enhancements around centralized logging, auditing and command approval, as well as the ability to write third-party Sudo plugins in Python rather than C.

VMware to Acquire Octarine to Boost Kubernetes Runtime Security

Enterprise and infrastructure software providers continue to bulk up on their cloud native security portfolios. This week VMware announced that it plans to acquire DevSecOps security provider Octarine. VMware plans to fold Octarine’s Kubernetes security platform into its own VMware Carbon Black Cloud cloud native endpoint protection platform. The capabilities would provide VMware customers with the ability to establish content-based policies to protect sensitive information and monitor Kubernetes workloads, to integrate security checks into the development life cycle, and to provide native anomaly detection and threat monitoring.

Party On

 Tina Nolte, VP of product, Spectro Cloud, explains how the company's Kubernetes as a Service works for today's edition of The New Stack Context podcast.

Ed Anuff, chief product officer at DataStax, speaks about how the move to the cloud is happening for companies in two months now, instead of three to five years. 

The move to the cloud is all about skills — people have to be trained very fast now, said Amr Awadallah, Ph.D., VP of developer relations, Google Cloud. TNS founder and Publisher Alex Williams moderated a panel discussion for the DataStax Accelerate series on how users and enterprises are succeeding with NoSQL and Apache Cassandra.

On The Road
Dell Technologies Virtual Day of Podcasts // JUNE 9 // VIRTUAL FROM 6AM - 11AM PDT


Dell Technologies Virtual Day of Podcasts

Everything is scaling and DevOps is more important now than ever. It’s time to manage state, in context with Kubernetes and cloud native technologies, for the processes and technologies that developers and DevOps leaders need to scale fast and securely. Come join Dell Technologies and The New Stack for a day of discussions about DevOps, Kubernetes and what Dell Technologies, along with VMware Tanzu, can provide organizations as they think through at-scale development and management for workloads everywhere. Register now!

The New Stack Makers podcast is available on: — Pocket CastsStitcher — Apple PodcastsOvercastSpotifyTuneIn

Technologists building and managing new stack architectures join us for short conversations at conferences out on the tech conference circuit. These are the people defining how applications are developed and managed at scale.
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