Kubernetes Blooms at KubeCon + CloudNativeCon 2023 in Amsterdam
The theme for the KubeCon Amsterdam event this year was Community in Bloom, applying to both the tulip festival season in The Netherlands and to the growing and vibrant cloud-native community. Mike Miracle, chief strategy officer at CloudCasa by Catalogic, shares insights and key points of discussion from the event.
The KubeCon + CloudNativeCon Europe in Amsterdam was the largest KubeCon since the pre-pandemic KubeCon 2019 in San Diego, with 10,000 people in attendance and over 2,000 on the waitlist to attend.The event is hosted by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), the organization that oversees the Kubernetes project under the umbrella of the Linux Foundation.KubeCon events feature early adopters and technologists from leading open-source and cloud-native communities, and this event drew a significant number of local European attendees.
The CNCF has more than 800 members, 159 open-source projects, and around 1,300 primary software maintainers, as well as an additional 200,000 contributors.
Kubernetes By and For All
The CNCF was born out of the donation of Kubernetes from Google, and the mission of developing, steering and promoting Kubernetes is shared among hundreds of companies and thousands of individual contributors.Kubernetes, often abbreviated as K8s (with the 8 representing the number of letters between the K and the s), is an open-source system for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications.As Google notes, Kubernetes builds upon a decade and a half of experience at Google running production workloads at scale.
KubeCon Europe 2023 reflected the growing dominance of Kubernetes, with it now being the de facto compute platform for cloud applications. A few days before KubeCon Europe, the Kubernetes Release Team announced the release of Kubernetes 1.27, created with contributions from 1,020 companies and 1,603 individuals, with Google still being the largest contributor, followed by Red Hat, Microsoft, VMware, Intel, DaoCloud, IBM, Amazon, and many others.
Open Source Is the Default Choice
In the world of cloud-native, open-source solutions dominate and are now the default choice for end users and vendors for cloud-native environments. This is driven in large part by the popularity and adoption of Kubernetes and the success of the Linux Foundation and the CNCF and its members to incubate and mature or graduate open-source projects. This has also driven commercial solutions to either adopt open source or carry the burden to keep up and be compatible withthe growing open source ecosystem.
Additionally, with the high quality and large number of contributors to the software projects, the buy vs. build vs. adopt decision has swung permanently to adopting open source. One could choose to spend money to develop proprietary software or embrace open source to save time and money. The large open amount of mature open source and the supporting community also helps bridge the skills gap with organizations that struggle to find the right talent to deliver on their business goals.
Kubernetes Is Lifting All Boats
The name Kubernetes stems from an ancient Greek word for helmsman, who is someone who steers a ship, like a container ship, which explains the ship wheel logo. Many of the CNCF and open source projects related to Kubernetes have nautical themes, such as Harbor, Helm, Vela (sail), and Velero (sailboat). In reference to the 100 kilometers of canals, 90 islands and 1500 bridges in Amsterdam, one can say that Kubernetes is lifting all boats (projects) and connecting all (open source) islands.
One example is Prometheus, the open-source monitoring and alerting toolkit that was the second project that CNCF hosted in 2016. Prometheus was instrumental in enabling the success that Chronosphere and commercial vendors are having in addressing observability, which was a key topic at the Amsterdam event and at previous KubeCons. Observability is the natural evolution of the application and networking data collection and monitoring tools but is focused on the distributed and dynamic nature of Kubernetes and cloud environments.
Another example is the open-source project Velero, which means sailboat in Spanish. The Velero community maintainers are on a mission to standardize an open-source backup, recovery, and migration tool for cloud-native workloads orchestrated by Kubernetes. While not yet a CNCF project, Velero is backed by VMware and has many active maintainers and contributors, including CloudCasa by Catalogic, Dell, Microsoft, Red Hat and VMware.