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Building on the innovation of others is the natural progress of technology. View in browser »
The New Stack Update

ISSUE 275: One Step Beyond

Talk Talk Talk

“That’s why developers won’t do it. Deep testing stops development. It’s not necessarily a matter of skill or interest. It is nearly always a massive distraction.”

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Tricentis’ James Bach, “Why I Need a Tester
Add It Up

Demand for software developers’ time has not softened recently. COVID-related traumas created their unique reasons for stress, but 55% of 278 software engineers in the United Kingdom feel at least moderately burned-out at work, according to a June 2021 survey conducted on behalf of Haystack. The top reasons for feeling this way are too much work and personal stress but dig deeper and they are really about work and personal expectations.

Females are 16 percentage points more likely than males to be “burned out” from work, but men are 16 percentage points more likely to cite a “high workload” as the reason for feeling this way, whereas females’ point to “unrealistic demands” on the part of management (Non-binary individuals were not accounted into this survey). That’s an easy problem to solve — just hire more developers. Software engineers under 45 years old were 17 percentage points more likely to feel burned than their elders. They blame most of the same reasons but are also more likely to think inefficient processes, unrealistic management demands and unreliable software are problems.

Young people are in a hurry. If only they could fix unreliable software and inefficient processes, then their workload problems would be solved! The more mature workforce is wiser, and perhaps that is why they are less likely to be burned out. Here is one more disturbing statistic from the survey. When asked about their workplace, 78% of both female software developers 18-44 years old said it takes less than a week on average to begin working on a feature and reliably deploy it into production. In contrast, men, were slightly less likely (65%) to say so, but only 44% of the 45+ crowd rush to get this done. Learn from your elders.

What's Happening

The amount of data created has doubled every year, presenting a host of challenges for organizations: security and privacy issues for starters, but also storage costs. What situations call for that data move to decentralized cloud storage rather than on-prem or even a single public cloud storage setup? What are the advantages and challenges of a decentralized cloud storage solution for data, and how can those be navigated?

On this episode of The New Stack Makers podcast, Ben Golub, CEO of Storj, and Krista Spriggs, software engineering manager at the company, were joined by Alex Williams, founder and publisher of The New Stack, along with Heather Joslyn, TNS’ features editor. Golub and Spriggs talked about how decentralized storage for data makes sense for organizations concerned about cloud costs, security, and resiliency.

When Is Decentralized Storage the Right Choice?

One Step Beyond

In a recent interview that TNS founder Alex Williams had with Kubernetes advocate Kelsey Hightower, the always-eloquent Hightower noted that “We hear this every time there's a technology transition: people believe that the shoulders that we stand on to get to where we are now ... can go nameless," Hightower said.

Hightower was discussing, along with Canonical CEO Mark Shuttleworth, how Kubernetes relies on Linux, even as people forget how useful Linux has been, thanks to its maturity and reliability, in the Kubernetes-fueled container revolution. And in time, they hope, developers would forget about Kubernetes too, even as they increasingly relied upon it.

“If you can build something that people are so comfortable with that they don't worry about it anymore, you're essentially freeing all of that intellectual energy up to then focus on problems that arguably are more interesting,” Shuttleworth said, in this upcoming edition of The New Stack Makers podcast. 

Building on the innovation of others is the natural progress of technology. For an upcoming ebook that we are putting together for LogDNA, “Cloud Native Observability for DevOps Teams,” we got an opportunity to discuss with LogDNA cofounder Lee Liu about what inspired him to start the company when so many other competitive businesses already crowded the field. 

In a nutshell, the company needed logging to scale to the next level, to build on what others have done, and at the same time allow developers to forget about the previous building blocks. In its original (since discarded) business plan, LogDNA was more than content to use Logstash for the ingestion of the logs that needed to be analyzed, but the problem with Logstash, as Liu explained, was “you need to tell it what type of logs you're ingesting so it can do the regex filtering and to enrich data and all that stuff.” That was fine if you were monitoring one app, say, but how about the whole stack, including the database, app server and network drivers? The job would quickly spiral out of control. 

“So, we wrote our own injector that basically would take the data that the logs are coming in, and will auto-detect what type of file it was, and auto-parses that,” he explained. And thus LogDNA was born, building on the ideas of log analysis, while at the same time, taking them one step beyond.

JFrog’s Private Distribution Network for Developers

DevOps platform provider JFrog is touting its new Private Distribution Network (PDN) as an “industry first,” because it allows DevOps teams to accelerate application updates through a lightweight solution that combines two network acceleration and optimization technologies — Peer-to-Peer (P2P) and Content Delivery Networks (CDNs).

Timescale Hyperfunctions Ease PostgreSQL Query Complexities

Timescale introduced TimescaleDB hyperfunctions, which are pre-built functions for the most common — and often most difficult — queries that developers write today. Hyperfunctions are particularly great for helping developers measure what matters in their time-series data, which is relentless and generates massive, ever-growing streams of information.

Choreo, WSO2’s New iPaaS Built on Top of Ballerina

An iPaaS can help integrate any combination of cloud and on-premises endpoints, including APIs and IoT devices. WS02's Choreo is an iPaas with features designed to help bridge the gap between low-code and experienced developers.

On The Road
Cloud Foundry Summit // JULY 21-22 // VIRTUAL @ 7-10AM PDT

JULY 21-22 // VIRTUAL @ 7-10AM PDT

Cloud Foundry Summit

Developers: the Cloud Foundry Summit is made for you. We’ll be there, discussing what community leadership means in a time of deep complexity and shifting priorities — in work and the world! See you there. Register now!

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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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