In the past few years, the “Developer Relations Advocate” has become a very real job category, one coming from a need on the part of IT vendors. View in browser »
The New Stack Update

ISSUE 282: The DevRel Journey

Talk Talk Talk

“The edge exposes the need for a completely new development framework.”

Cisco Vice President Vijoy Pandey.
Add It Up
Business Tech Managers Are Satisfied, Willing to Facilitate No Code Automations
Managers of business technologies (e.g., Salesforce, Slack, Gmail, Workday) are motivated to push forward a new wave of “no-code” and “low-code” development. According to Workato’s State of Business Technology 2021, 51% say their top challenge is how much time it takes to get things done with the tools. Especially at smaller companies, business technology managers are in charge of answering all day-to-day IT questions for the organization, as well as provisioning equipment and a host of other responsibilities. They often collaborate with advanced business users to help automate processes. They have seen firsthand how business processes are managed, and 78% still allow end-users to build automations.
What's Happening

At last count, social media giant Twitter enjoys around 353 million active users, and streaming music service Spotify has 356 million active listeners. In both cases, open source tools and platforms for cloud native environments have served as the cornerstones for their tremendous growth.

In this latest episode of The New Stack Makers podcast, Spotify Senior Staff Engineer Dave Zolotusky and Twitter Developer Experience Lead and Manager for Engineering Effectiveness Jasmine James discussed the role of open source software in their respective organizations. Katie Gamanj, ecosystem manager of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, and Alex Williams, founder and publisher of TNS, co-hosted this interview.

Why Cloud Native Open Source is Critical for Twitter and Spotify

The DevRel Journey

For years, one of the most exciting parts of the KubeCon keynotes was watching Google’s Kelsey Hightower demonstrate some new feature of Kubernetes live on stage. How could K8s possibly be so difficult to use when Kelsey is right there on stage easily controlling a cluster with his smartphone, making small talk all the while? He made us all believe.

In the past few years, the “Developer Relations Advocate,” or “DevRel,” has become a very real, and lucrative, job category, one coming from a need on the part of IT vendors. Drumming up interest in some new feature or service has traditionally been the role of the marketing department. But software engineers have been wary of marketing (and let’s not even discuss salespeople), and many marketing departments haven’t had the technical chops to hold the attention of the engineers. On the other hand, many companies have found that putting marketing in the hands of their most technically-inclined engineers will, while assuring technical accuracy, still leave many perplexed.

This is why good DevRel is such gold for companies. The role involves both technical know-how and being a people person. The ideal candidate needs to field questions from the thorniest of critics but at the same time have the empathy to ensure that people who don’t quite “get it” walk away with a better understanding.

If you have this fairly unique set of skills, you might want to check out a new post this week on The New Stack, “DevRel for Beginners: What to Know and How to Get Started,” from one of our newest freelance writers, Kevin Casey. The article offers a number of tips for getting started down this career path. In starters, it requires honing your speaking and writing skills, becoming an advocate for developers and, perhaps most importantly, learning to listen.

As Jorn Knutilla, solution architect and DevRel advocate for NeuVector told Casey,  “If you approach DevRel with an attitude that you’re smarter than everybody else — well, this is not going to be the role for you.”

NGINX’s Reference Architecture for Kubernetes Microservices

During its virtual conference this year, NGINX released the NGINX Modern Apps Reference Architecture (MARA), which it says will help companies to “create a complete, fully operational microservices‑based application that you can get up and running in minutes, hosted in a single GitHub Repo.”

Machine Learning Still Struggles to Extract Meaning from Language

The last 20 years have seen an explosion in the amount of data of all forms produced and captured.  Still even large language models like GPT-3 lack "any true grounding in a specific domain [will] fall well short of what a human with experience and knowledge uses to understand intent, context, and meaning," writes Walt Mayo, CEO of, in this contributed post on the limits still inherent in natural language processing.

Docker Says Some Users Must Pay: But Can It Make Money?

Docker’s decision to start charging corporate customers as part of a business revamp has raised eyebrows as the pioneer container orchestration provider struggles on its road to profit. The existing Docker Free subscription has been renamed Docker Personal, but paid subscriptions (Pro, Team or Business) will start at $5 per user per month for professional use in larger businesses, with an effective date of Aug. 31, 2021. Some are not happy about this.

Party On

TNS founder and publisher Alex Williams and Ashley Ward, technical director, office of the CTO, Palo Alto Networks, discuss the DevSecOps skillsets needed for cloud deployments.

On The Road
Puppetize Digital ’21 // SEPT. 29-30 // VIRTUAL

SEPT. 29-30 // VIRTUAL

Puppetize Digital ’21

Puppetize Digital, Puppet’s annual user conference, is a free, virtual, one-day event spanning multiple regions where you can connect with other Puppet community members, contributors, customers, partners and employees. Register now!

Click here to download the ebook: Cloud Native Observability for DevOps Teams
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  • Why developers should learn Kubernetes.
  • An overview of Kubernetes logging.
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Thanks to our exclusive ebook sponsor, LogDNA for making this work possible!

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