Inside Analysis

Cloud and the killer ‘infinite variety’ factor

The building processes inside the new mechanics of the cloud are difficult. There, we’ve said it – do we feel better now? Okay so maybe not so much difficult as such, but more complex in many cases… and definitely more varied.

If nature itself is typified by the infinite variety of genetic diversity, then cloud has a kind of technically genomic biodiversity too.

If nature itself is typified by the infinite variety of genetic diversity, then cloud has a kind of technically genomic biodiversity that we must recognise.

The ‘more varied’ element here is simple to understand. Sometime we will be looking to cloud-enable traditional workloads, while in many other instances we will be looking to create the next generation of so-called ‘cloud native’ apps using the technologies that surround us today such as OpenStack, Cloud Foundry or perhaps Docker.

As in nature, it is in cloud

If nature itself is typified by the infinite variety of genetic diversity, then cloud has a kind of technically genomic biodiversity too.

In the new age of cloud (Ed – we’re probably on about the third age now, right?) we need to think about support for multiple hypervisors and think about the architectural contruct(s) that will be needed to operate within differing cloud environments.

In the face of all this dynamism, vendors will try and tell us that they are capable of offering a single development solution for multiple cloud types, but we should perhaps be wary of any technical panacea or cure all in the face of so much biodiversity.

How programmes can survive cloud, probably

One thing is for sure, we will need to give software application developers the tools to perform continuous testing and delivery as they seek to rapidly build, test and deliver secure high quality applications.

It’s all about achieving higher predictability and quality throughout the development lifecycle, which is a shame – because that sounds like marketingspeak, except that this stuff does actually need to happen.

There are of course benefits to using hybrid cloud infrastructures, but only if you know how to design application workloads to run on them with the required degree of automation, orchestration and control.

HP on the table

Looking at what HP brings to the table here, the firm’s HP Helion CloudSystem 9.0 this month expands support for multiple hypervisors and multiple clouds. The technology integrates HP Helion OpenStack and the HP Helion Development Platform — and the intention here is to provide customers users with an enterprise grade open source platform for cloud native application development and infrastructure.

Complex new mechanics yes, but HP is aiming to try and abstract away the actual grease and guts of the task and says it has provided an intuitive setup model delivered as a virtual appliance, allowing for installation in hours.

The firm has also announced a new functional test automation solution, HP LeanFT, which allows software developers and testers to use those much needed continuous testing and continuous delivery methodologies.

HP LeanFT is integrated with HP Application Lifecycle Management,  Quality Center and Mobile Center to help developers (and testers) to reduce maintenance costs and share testing resources.

NOTE: Along with this news, HP also introduced major upgrades to its flagship HP Unified Functional Testing and HP Business Process Testing products, including support for GIT integration as a repository option and scriptless keyword-driven testing.

“As businesses seek to move with more speed and pursue new markets, developers and testers experience greater opportunities but also greater risks,” said Raffi Margaliot, SVP and GM, HP Application Delivery Management. “HP LeanFT balances the twin imperatives of velocity and quality by allowing developers to operate in the modern Agile and DevOps ecosystem, while also leveraging our proven capabilities in application testing and application lifecycle management.”

Cloud is developing and evolving fast. It is no surprise to see vendors now producing tools to try and keep up with the speed of needed for continuous integration in cloud-based virtualized environments.

Still, expect a few species to go extinct.

This post is sponsored by The Business Value Exchange and HP Enterprise Services

About Adrian Bridgwater

Adrian Bridgwater is a freelance journalist and corporate content creation specialist focusing on cross platform software application development as well as all related aspects software engineering, project management and technology as a whole. Adrian is a regular writer and blogger with Computer Weekly and others covering the application development landscape to detail the movers, shakers and start-ups that make the industry the vibrant place that it is. His journalistic creed is to bring forward-thinking, impartial, technology editorial to a professional (and hobbyist) software audience around the world. His mission is to objectively inform, educate and challenge – and through this champion better coding capabilities and ultimately better software engineering.

About Adrian Bridgwater

Adrian Bridgwater is a freelance journalist and corporate content creation specialist focusing on cross platform software application development as well as all related aspects software engineering, project management and technology as a whole. Adrian is a regular writer and blogger with Computer Weekly and others covering the application development landscape to detail the movers, shakers and start-ups that make the industry the vibrant place that it is. His journalistic creed is to bring forward-thinking, impartial, technology editorial to a professional (and hobbyist) software audience around the world. His mission is to objectively inform, educate and challenge – and through this champion better coding capabilities and ultimately better software engineering.

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