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March 7, 2018

Call for presentations: Next Generation Ops and Infrastructure Practices

By Gene Kim

This is a time of enormous disruption in technology — just look at the words that define this era: DevOps, automation, cloud native, digital transformation.

However, one of the groups being disrupted the most and under the most pressure is IT Operations in large, complex enterprises. There are simultaneous demands to move faster, be more secure, move to cloud, give more access to developers, automate at a scale never seen before, upskill the workforce, etc.

Because of all the exciting new technologies and innovations (e.g., configuration management, containers, Kubernetes, serverless, and so much more), Operations is also often having to support radically different architectures, create radically different operating models to work with Dev, create entirely new platform teams, etc. The path of how to get from “here to there” successfully is not yet well understood.

Furthermore, the decisions that Operations makes today are likely to have a significant and long-lasting impact on the entire technology organization and business — probably much larger than whatever programming languages or architectures developers choose to use.

This is an incredible opportunity for IT Operations to transform themselves, not just to survive, but thrive. We believe that the best days of Operations are ahead of us, not behind us.

For the next two years (2018 and 2019), we are going to run a “conference inside a conference,” spanning both the US and UK DevOps Enterprise Summits. It will be focused on Next Generation Ops and Infrastructure Practices. We are looking for a much broader set of talks, spanning theory, practice, synthesis of current works, promising ideas, birds of feather sessions, and experience reports. The goal is to better understand where the world of Ops and Infrastructure is going, how to succeed, with more specificity than “culture change is needed” and at a higher level than writing YAML configuration files.

Sample topics that we’re looking for:

Platform and technology directions

  • Dealing with the rapidly evolving ecosystem complexity of the platform landscape (e.g, how to do logging, monitoring, etc. in Kubernetes, docker, etc.)
  • How development concepts such as functional programming and immutability will equally change Infrastructure
  • How “infrastructure as code” is just the beginning: here’s where it’s going
  • Promising academic research or projects

Funding and organizational models

  • How you’ve changed budgeting and funding models
  • How you’ve used models such as Google SRE or Spotify tribes
  • Outcomes of using SRE concepts such as toil, error budgets, etc.
  • How organizing around products has affected Operations
  • How you’ve staffed around platforms (e.g., Kubernetes, cloud, etc.)
  • Internal platforms as a product: how to manage different expectations between external platforms and internal platforms (internal backlogs, roadmaps)
  • The future of networking and networking organizations
  • The future of security and security organizations
  • How you’ve addressed needs for observability and monitoring
  • Transformation and upskilling of talent pool
  • Transitioning to next-generation Operations mindset: high trust culture, focus on human factors, bringing software development lifecycle to operations work, working with developers, etc…
  • Outcomes of using Chaos Engineering
- About The Authors
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Gene Kim

Award winning CTO, researcher, and author.

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