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2022 Will See Increased Focus On Developer Productivity | Michael Coté


Guest: Michael Coté (LinkedIn, Twitter)
Company: VMware (Twitter)
Show: 2022 Prediction Series

Joining us to share his predictions for 2022, Michael Coté, Developer Advocate, VMware Tanzu, VMware, believes that there’s enough of a mainstream usage of Kubernetes and now the industry will see a lot of focus on developer productivity. Cote explains, “Just making it so developers don’t have to think or worry about Kubernetes so much and just get the benefits of it. And a part of what will be fun to see personally, for me, since it’s been about seven years since I’ve worked in the Cloud Foundry world and at Pivotal and now at Tanzu, is a lot of the things that we’re starting to see in the Kubernetes developer world.”

Check out his full predictions in the video above.


Swapnil Bhartiya: Hi. This is your host, Swapnil Bhartiya, and welcome to our 2022 prediction series. And today we have with us Michael Coté, developer advocate at VMware. Michael, it’s great to have you on show.

Michael Coté: Yeah, thanks for having me.

Swapnil Bhartiya: Now it’s time for you to grab your crystal ball and share with us what predictions you have for this year.

Michael Coté: In the last several years, I think we’ve all, and you’ve talked with many people, seen Kubernetes finally, they don’t like it when you say this, the thought lords of Kubernetes, but it’s one. It’s what everyone wants to use instead of the alternatives. And I think now, I think there’s enough of a mainstream usage of Kubernetes, definitely more than mainstream interest, but when you look at the amount of workloads that people like Gartner and others estimate that are running on Kubernetes, I don’t know, if you kind of fudge it up a little bit to account for errors and whatever, it’s something like 15 or 20% of workloads globally. It’s just to say applications seem to run on Kubernetes maybe, and so I think I forget my diffusion of innovation curve, but what that means to me is it’s in the early majority more or less.

And I think the only reason you run Kubernetes is to run applications on top of it. And those applications tend to be developed by software developers. And I think the early indications and what we’ve always known with Kubernetes is that it’s not really built for application developers. And so I think what you’re starting to see is a lot of application developers love a challenge, but also they would really like to just work on their applications. And so some of my colleagues like to call it a developer crisis or something like that, I don’t think developers are pulling their hair out or anything like that, but there’s a lot of work that can go into, not necessarily Kubernetes itself, but all of the delicious packing around Kubernetes, the tooling and the ways of using it, the packagings and all of that, that can make it better for developers to use.

And indeed, I think that’s what you see. I’ve seen we do that a lot at Tanzu, but out in the community and also people I talk with, they’re very focused on developers having an easier time in Kubernetes. So I think that’s what we’ll see a lot of this year, is more of a focus on, you could call it developer productivity, but just making it so developers don’t have to think or worry about Kubernetes so much and just get the benefits of it. And a part of what will be fun to see personally, for me, since it’s been about seven years since I’ve worked in the Cloud Foundry world and at Pivotal and now at Tanzu, is a lot of the things that we’re starting to see in the Kubernetes developer world. It’s great that we have kind of proven this out in Cloud Foundry and other areas, the ways of working and kind of what developers want.

And I’m seeing more and more of that kind of thinking pulled into the Kubernetes world. Like, for example, if you look at Spotify has this project called Backstage, and what’s really interesting about that project for developers is that, well, it understands, to personify it, it understands what developers need, and that is a place to go to look up all of the other services that they depend on to have a better, more automated way of tracking their own software and really, maybe not finely, but it’s rare that you get to the full DevOps idea of developers having a lot of ownership of their application and production. And so if you look at the intent behind Backstage as a project and the way that we’re integrating it into the Tanzu application service, you can see that appreciation and learning from the Cloud Foundry world being spread, injected, given over to the Kubernetes world, which I think is great, because that means that you can start from a nice foundation that we’ve been working on in that world for quite some time.

And there’s still many organizations I talk with that, of course, enjoy the platform, the way of working that Cloud Foundry represents.

Swapnil Bhartiya: What kind of movements, trends or, if you just look at it from Tanzu’s perspective, things that you see will be happening this year, which will also kind of, where the industry will be moving or ecosystems will be going? So talk about that.

Michael Coté: I think what you see in what we’re doing in the portfolio and also the work and the conversations I have with customers, and I’ve been tracking this in surveys a lot, is really understanding the multi-cloud needs that organizations have. And when I’ve been looking at that more, it’s not so much, well, it’s not only just like I’m running in multiple places, but I think what I’ve been seeing, not only, well, of course we do it the best way, but we and Tanzu and VMware as a whole focus on this. But how I’m starting to think about it is, how do I treat all of the cloud stuff out there in the services, more or less is just my IT portfolio and what do I need to use and manage all of that portfolio? Way back when we would call this heterogeneous systems management, which is hard to say, quite a tongue twister, but I think that’s what I hear of more and more is that organizations want the ability to manage and track all of that.

And I think the reason they want that, I mean, this is a very operations perspective, is that as organizations are developing their software, their applications, what runs their business, right? They want to make sure that developers have two things. One, that they can use whatever interesting new tool they’re most productive with. And two, developers are going to do that anyways. And so they want to make sure that developers don’t go off and do it on their own in an unmanaged way. Which is always dangerous because after a year or two developers tend to move on to something new and exciting and someone has to be left over managing all these multiple clouds. So it’s better to give them a happy path to make the right thing easy.

Swapnil Bhartiya: Michael, thank you so much for taking time out today. And of course, share these insights and your predictions for this year. I would love to have you back on the show at the end of this year to first of all, see how many of your predictions turn out to be true and then get set up fresh for next year. But I don’t want to wait that long, I would love to have you back on the show before that as well, to talk more about Tanzu and VMware, but I really appreciate your time today. Thank you.

Michael Coté: Sounds great. That amount of accountability within the year sounds scary. We’ll have to see if that works out, but yeah, thanks for having me. It was fun.


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