Long live the Open Infrastructure Summit

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Last week was all about the OpenStack Summit in Berlin and we have really enjoyed meeting up with the community to live and breathe open source for a full week.

The start of this Summit gave some exciting insights on the ongoing transformation within the OpenStack community as we collaborate with more and more adjacent open source technologies all pointing to the common goal of improving open infrastructure. A couple of presentations close to heart for us came from our customers SBAB Bank and Vector. SBAB outlined how they as a bank have become a fast moving digital company, more than doubling their monthly releases with minimal customer impact. Vector, the automotive embedded electronics expert, talked about their customers and the use of OpenStack-based cloud in the automotive industry.

Our team contributed a lot to the Summit schedule as well with Florian tutoring courses in “Practical Kubernetes with Magnum” and Ansible, Magnus giving a presentation about Connecting external network resources to OpenStack and Tobias who moderated and helped out at half a dozen Forum sessions and Working groups throughout the week.

The cherry topping off this entire week, was the fact that our tech-teams were awarded the OpenStack Superuser award.

 

The Superuser awards

Launched during the Paris Summit in 2014, the Superuser awards recognises a team that uses OpenStack to meaningfully improve their business while contributing back to the community. At the Berlin Summit, we were lucky enough to receive the Superuser award, joining the club of previous winners AT&T, CERN, China Mobile, Comcast,NTT Group, Paddy Power Betfair and UKCloud.

 

Highlights from our nomination

With emphasis on regulatory compliance and data protection, we are a European leader, promoter and enabler of OpenStack-based compliant cloud solutions.

We run our public OpenStack based cloud in eight regions across three continents. All of our data centers are interconnected via private networks. In addition to our public cloud, we provide a pan-European cloud for verticals where regulatory compliance is paramount (e.g. banking and financial services, government, healthcare) addressing all regulatory challenges.

Our true innovation lies in the fact that we have managed to build a global open-source based cloud solution fit for regulatory challenged enterprises. These are enterprises who haven’t really been able to utilize the true potential of cloud computing until they met us.

 

It’s not all about OpenStack

Jonathan Bryce, Executive Director of the OpenStack Foundation kicked off the first day talking about the concept of open infrastructure and what it means. The OpenStack foundation has been wanting to know what impact open source is having in the world at large and across the entire technology community. Earlier this year they commissioned research, across 10 countries globally, and found a lot of interesting data on adoption, approach and attitudes.

Amongst the findings, the research concluded that 81% of respondents claims open source will become more important over the coming years for their company and that the top priorities organisations are looking to achieve with open source includes flexibility and control over their environment.

Another attribute and strength of open source, according to the study, was having true interoperability and a lot of the participants expressed that open source is a key to protect them from vendor lock-in. These findings strengthen the new strategy that has been brewing within the Foundation and the community for quite some time and that is also the reason why the community has begun talking about Open Infrastructure in a broader sense.

In a world where there are many options, both open and propriatary, the OpenStack community is ultimately here to make sure that the infrastructure world has powerful and successful options to make sure that there are open alternatives at every level of the stack. In conclusion, it’s not all about OpenStack but Open Infrastructure and thus, this will be the last OpenStack Summit and starting in Denver on April 29, we will be attending the Open Infrastructure Summit!

Regulatory compliance is not a showstopper

SBAB Bank is a testimony of how even some of the most regulatory challenged organisations of our digital era are able focus on their core business to keep up their speed of development. In this talk, Klas Ljungkvist shares the SBAB story with success factors and failures of their journey towards becoming a fast moving digital company, despite the demands for regulatory compliance that rests on their backs. Klas story is interesting from so many angles and the most important one from our point of view is the fact that their success perfectly reflects our core message; Innovation Through Open Infrastructure.

 

Other key insights from the Summit

If you want to get the full picture of everything that went down during the Summit we highly recommend the comprehensive recap from Superuser with 51 things you need to know about the OpenStack Summit in Berlin.

Highlights include:

  • Strong contributor metrics
  • New features & roadmaps
  • New use cases & pilot projects
  • Key community activities
  • Tons of user user stories

 

Some thoughts from the City Network Stackers

Namrata Sitlani, Developer

Apart from some of the really exciting news such as the name change to Open Infrastructure Summit and the fact that the Summit is coming to China, I really enjoyed the lightning talks on Function as a Service with Kata Containers. FaaS and Kata both being amongst the latest emerging technologies seemed to draw a lot of attention in general and I felt like I got a hang of the basics. I’m pleased to see that the diversity discussion isn’t slowing down and I attended the diversity lunch, sponsored by Intel, where I listened to success stories and discussions about salary gaps and how we can continue to work towards a more diverse community. Apart from attending a number of sessions I helped out with Florian’s workshops on Magnum and OpenStack-Ansible from which I seem to learn new things every time I attend.

 

Erik Johansson, Senior Systems Engineer Linux & Automation

My focus leaned heavily towards CI/CD and automation and as always, the Summit did not disappoint. CI/CD and automation are still amongst the hottest topics which I believe to be very important. As there is always way to much content ongoing in parallell (no, that’s not a bad thing!), I’d like to do some shoutouts on some of the most interesting sessions I attended at the Summit in Berlin.

 

Tobias Rydberg, Senior Developer

Attending an OpenStack Summit is not only about running around and watching presentations, it is as much as meeting people and having good conversations. One part of the Summits is the “Forum sessions” – a really great opportunity for Operators/Users and Developers to come together and talk about specific use cases – AND a good way to get into good conversations and to get to know people.

This time around I personally had a pretty busy schedule with moderating a bunch of Forum sessions and the Public cloud Working Group meeting. One of the main goals for the Public Cloud Working group is to be the voice of public clouds inside the community, presenting our specific needs and argue on why this is important for us and the community as a whole, so of course we had a few Forum sessions around what we as operators need as well as around features that are requested by our customers. The response this time from the community was great, a lot of attendance in our suggested topics and a lot of gainful discussions, and I’m sure that we will see results on these discussions moving forward.

One highlight for me was a project update of “Adjutant” from the PTL of the project – Adrian Turjak. A workflow framework to make user and admin tasks easier – a pretty new project under the OpenStack umbrella that plan for its first release in “Stein”. Looking forward to see more about that!

As usual it was really nice to meet all friends in the OpenStack community – and to be able to find some more new friends every time as well!

 

 

Finally – it was of course a really nice feeling to get up on stage to receive the SuperUser Award for City Network! Proud to be working with such a good team! So a big “Thank you” to everyone that voted for us!