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The Cloud is Just Another Sun [video] (fosdem.org)
102 points by tosh 31 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 27 comments

I think Rankin has a great point. When you use AWS, your OS is no longer really Linux, it’s the suite of AWS services. The assumption that you need to tear up and tear down EC2 means that it makes sense for S3 to become your file-system, Batch to be your CPU, use a managed database etc. etc.

Sorry to be pedantic, but S3 is designed to be an Object store, not a filesystem - the semantics are very different, and the performance too.

Furthermore, S3's replication is "eventually consistent", something that you wouldn't accept in a filesystem-like use.

Source: the internets, and I was at AWS for 6 years (2008-2014).

This does seem to be the way that Open Source has gone: The operating system and some other critical components (compilers, runtimes, etc) are open source - but applications, services, desktops, marketplaces, firmware, etc are closed.

I'd still call this a huge win for both open source and free software. But obviously its a much bigger win for open source than for free software.

The development is going to go where the money is.

I was at the talk, and thought at the time that Rankin missed the main point.

Linux didn't beat Sun because it was better, cheaper, or had more ideologically pure licensing.

Linux dominated because it was accessible. Anybody could download it, try it, it ran on most things. Barrier to entry was essentially zero. Licensing helps, but it's being trivial to access that is the killer outcome.

And the reason behind the rise of cloud isn't because it's cheaper or better, it's that it's more accessible. Anybody can get out their credit card and try it, use it. Barrier to entry is essentially zero, and that's how to suck people in.

I don't think so. You need a non-maxed out mainstream credit card (gift cards or prepaids won't work) and still you're locked out of a lot of functionality (e.g. k8s in AWS) unless you are willing to actually pay. Also any trial period comes with an expiration date. That might be a low barrier but it is not a zero one. I know a lot of people that are still out of cloud due to all that.

That is one of the reasons AWS is giving a generous free tier for Lambda (1 million request per month). It is extremely easy to setup, and basically free for toy projects

Video seems to be broken on mobile. YouTube link: https://youtu.be/goQ-yjN7WAc

mp4 and webm downloads work fine.

Isn’t he talking about Kubernetes? It seems like Google’s play (which has other components, i.e. go-cloud) is to try and get the community to target an open-source, vendor-agnostic platform, so that they have a chance of taking workloads from Amazon.

It’s easy to see this turning in a more proprietary direction later in the game, with GKE leaving Kube itself behind, but for now it seems like a strong contender in the fight against “everyone just codes against their preferred cloud’s API.” Commoditize your complement, etc.

You kinda have the right idea with the commoditization behind k8s, but I don't think you seen just how deep it goes.

Every cloud platform needs its own management layer to make the hardware infrastructure useful, and it's at this management layer where lock-in happens. Google made this layer a commodity with k8s, but took it a step further by making the trend toward open infectious and one-way.

Google's gamble was that if providers have to compete directly on a level playing field, Google will win because they're better at it. It's a bold move, and we'll eventually see if they were right. In the mean time k8s is still at work leveling the field.

Here's the key that makes k8s a one-way de-proprietarization mechanism: it's not just infrastructure for building systems, it's infrastructure for building infrastructure, and it's better than anything you could come up with otherwise, and the infrastructure it builds is natively open and extensible. K8s is trivial to extend, but it's REALLY HARD to extend it to become a proprietary system, while still keeping it useful.

This is true for gke as much as anything else. The value-add for gke is that someone is managing it who knows wtf they're doing. The value add isn't (and can't be) any Google-specific magic sauce they add to k8s, because k8s is only really useful if the customer themselves can extend it using known interfaces. And you can't make gke meaningfully proprietary without breaking that extensibility. Sure they can have gke-specific components, just like how Amazon can have aws-specific controllers if they need to. But those have to be extensions to an open base. If such things could result in lock-in, then they would also result in a lock-out of common tools and extensions, which would kill the platform dead.

Except that what you're really paying for from a cloud service is a team of engineers developing solutions for the most common problems plus engineers that are on-call to rapidly fix the service anytime something breaks. k8s is great except that team of on-call engineers is now you...

So the incentive Google has with K8s to make it just good enough that you trust them to take care of it. If they make it too easy, you have no reason to pay them to manage it any more.

It needs to be good enough outside GCloud that AWS/Azure/on-prem customers choose it, and can then migrate to GCloud later.

Past the primitives of file, disk, vm, and database storage there are only a handful of systems that would lock you in that would take an investment to back out of.

The luxury of having that problem is pretty nice too. The benefits of working off or with these tools is you can get something up and running way faster than owning the whole stack yourself. If the services are priced as a utility then theres no reason not to use them. If your business is running on margins that require better or different systems then thats predictable and you can just design for that.

> If the services are priced as a utility then theres no reason not to use them.

A company offering great prices now might chose to increase them later on when they have achieved market leader position and everyone is locked into their proprietary APIs. Don't assume that their offers will always remain as sweet as the bait candy that you taste right now.

Obviously thats an option but that option exists no matter the providers layer of abstraction. If you sell colo they can increase your prices. If they sell hardware you have to replace it. Im not arguing against it, just pointing out that there really arent situations where you eliminate that possibility; just reduce the chances of it.

What are the bullet points for Dotcom boom 3 ? Where are we now and where are we heading ?

Sun as in sun for JEE? JEE was so ahead of its time.


I also found it in slightly poor taste, though I don’t think there was negative intent behind it. I cringed a bit at similar gags I’ve attempted.

I'm guessing the people downvoting me think PTSD jokes are OK in a professional environment. Can we keep this crap out of our conferences?

People jokes about dead. People jokes about sex. People jokes about anything. On the contrast, if some group of vulnerable people are in some protected zone that cannot be joke around, then it is in fact the society does not accept those people are the same as other people. It is a kind of positive discrimination. I mean, putting anything too far is bad.

And do the speaker insult people with PTSD? If no, then why being triggered, specifically if you don't have PTSD?

Did you just imply that veterans of the UNIX wars can't have real PTSD?

I think jokes should be told on the appropriate place, and maybe conferences aren't the place for them.

However I am fully against political correctness and censorship of jokes.

I don't miss what my parents generation had to endure.

Here, watch this and lighten up a bit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9n8Xp8DWf8&t=2m13s

He say "post traumatic stress", not PTSD. It's possible to have psychologically issues from seemingly innocuous experiences.

Or maybe they're thinking your fixation on an unrelated detail is harming the potential on-topic discussion for them.

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