Kubernetes and the Developer Centric Litmus Test
Pivotal sponsored this podcast.
This is the new litmus test for infrastructure software and development platforms: if you can’t provide a satisfactory experience for your coders, it might not deserve to exist in your enterprise. What happens when the experience is awful? Developers avoid it, and it sits on the shelf.
A good developer experience was one of the topics in this lively conversation for our latest episode of The New Stack Makers podcast, recorded at the SpringOne Platform conference, which took place this year in Austin, Texas. Pivotal Senior Vice President of Product James Watters was a guest, as was VMware Principal Engineer, and a co-creator of Kubernetes, Joe Beda. TNS founder and editor-in-chief Alex Williams hosted the recording.
Much of the discussion revolved around the best ways to improve the developer experience in order to make the lives of coders working on enterprise software easier. What happens to the developer experience when things break down or there are issues? “One of the things that has been my experience is that every difference between development, staging, and production will eventually result in bugs and an outage. So as much as you can make your entire development and staging exactly the same, the more reliably you’ll be able to build and ship software,” said Beda.
Beda then went on to explain. “So Kubernetes, it’s a complex system, and I think some of that is a necessary complexity. […] Being a piece of infrastructure, Kubernetes errs on the side of explicitness, which is a good quality when you’re trying to understand what’s happening, but it can create a lot of roadblocks when [users] trying to learn it for the first time,” adding that the components of Kubernetes such as pods and replica sets, deployments managing versions, are all layered on top of one another. The creators noted that while this layering was beneficial in terms of the components interacting with one another, continuing to add things to the Kubernetes core was not going to scale.
The conversation also touched on how the release of Pivotal Application Service 2.7 reflected with the themes of the keynote, given by Watters. “The CF Push experience continues to evolve in 2.7. We added some features to allow you to do blue-green deployments in an easier way, because that’s again about that developer experience, getting iterative change to production. That continues to roll forward. As we introduce Kubernetes as the container layer to that, getting that developer experience right remains kind of sacred. It was one of the first projects that we said, “Let’s start this from the developer perspective,” said Watters.
In this Edition:
1:43: James, maybe you can sum up what you were talking about at the keynote?
5:37: Some of the main themes according to that litmus test.
11:52: Kubernetes as a “platform for platforms.”
15:12: Custom resource definitions (CRDs) and their applicability.
18:03: What is your definition of CRDs as that sharp tool? How would you describe them?
22:04: Where are your thoughts going forward?
VMware is a sponsor of The New Stack.