Archive for the ‘Thinking Ahead’ Category

Strategy & Design Series: Journey to Cloud Native

Wednesday, February 20th, 2019
Beena Jacob, Director, Product Development

Donoma is always striving to improve the customer experience, whether it’s innovative features; or processes that makes our software robust and scalable. This technical series is designed to shed light on how our team is looking ahead and planning for new functionality, more security, more agility, even how Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) will be woven into our solutions. Our first discussion will be focused on providing context and background on cloud native, as well as how we’ve already begun to implement its principals into our solutions. Let’s dive in!

Exactly What is Cloud Native?

Cloud native is currently one of the leading trends in the computer industry. As the ecosystem around cloud-native technologies grows, it will become the competitive differentiator that will keep your company relevant in the future.

Cloud native is about innovating rapidly, improving scalability, and reducing operation costs, all while managing risks at a smaller scale. Let’s explore each one of these cloud-native fundamentals.

Innovating rapidly:In the past, the norm was to avoid risk and move slowly and carefully. How about releasing ideas to production within days or even within hours? Cloud native approach helps you get your ideas to the market fast by doing small incremental steps so that it can be reversible if needed. Risks become more manageable while accelerating change.

Improving Scalability:When ideas are released to market faster and as your business grows, you will need to support more users, locations, devices and scalability becomes critical.

Reducing operation costs:When business grows, you’ll need to plan your infrastructure needs and operation costs. With platform-as-a-service you can provision and pay for only what is needed.

So, whether a business is an enterprise or a startup, cloud native is applicable for both. Its strategy is all about reducing technical risks while innovating rapidly. Cloud native can be extremely powerful, but it does involve considerable amount of technical challenges and a cultural shift in your business.

How Does Cloud Native Work?

Cloud Native Can Look Like Many Things!

Like the story of the blind men and an elephant, cloud native might seem like it has different meanings, but this is not the case. The core components that make up cloud native each play a vital role in the implementation of cloud-native applications. Let’s dive briefly into each one:

Microservices:Microservices, also known as microservices architecture, is an architectural style that structures an application as a collection of services that are loosely coupled, independently deployable, and organized around business domains.

Containers: Containers make it easy to test processes and dependencies, as well as move and deploy.

Orchestration Tools:Orchestration helps with tasks such as scaling, configuration, rolling updates, etc.

Infrastructure-as-a-Service:Services can run on servers that can be provisioned on demand.

Continuous delivery:With automated testing and container packages, deployment to production is continuous.

How We’ve Already Begun Our Journey to Cloud Native

At Donoma, we’ve already begun our journey to cloud native, and are approaching it full-speed ahead. What do we mean by this? We’ve already taken the initiative to implement cloud-native principals into our solutions. We’ll use our product, OneView, as an example. OneView was created to provide insight and analytics for unified communication systems. When we developed the solution a few years back, we had developed it strictly for on-premise installations. Since then we have transitioned from on-premise, to SaaS (cloud enabled), and now to cloud native.

Microservices architecture plays an important role in developing cloud-native applications. For example, our latest OneView release included animated display of call routing within a unified communication system. Implementing this feature involved quite a few moving parts and complex call routing logic. By implementing modules as loosely coupled microservices, we were able to manage the technical risks and complete the feature within the aggressive timeline.

Time for You to Begin Your Journey

As we come to a close in our first discussion, we hope by providing you background and context to cloud native, as well as detailing the ways in which we’ve already embarked on our journey, you’ll be encouraged to now begin your journey. If you are to go ahead and embark on it, it’s important you understand that designing cloud-native applications doesn’t happen overnight. It is rather a journey that requires thoughtful planning and organizational support. There are no hard or fast rules, but it is best to start small.

Don’t go anywhere as we still have a lot to unpack in this Strategy & Design Series. Earlier, we briefly defined the core components that make up cloud native, as well as the role microservices played in the implementation of our latest OneView feature. So, in our next discussion, we’ll be digging even deeper into these core components, starting with microservices. See you next time!