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Instant Solutions for Common Problems

Today Ubuntu officially launched Juju bundles and Juju quickstart. What does this mean? Via a Juju bundle anybody can create a blueprint solution and allow others to make instant copies. You drag and drop a bundle or you use a one line command and you can in minutes deploy a complete software stack, pre-integrated and scaled, onto any cloud or server.

Many problems can be solved this way. Just the type of solutions that are included in the below blog post show what is possible. Anything from instant SaaS integration, Big Data, programming environments, ERP, Cobol integrations, Telecom solutions, etc. can all be instantly deployed, integrated and scaled.

Check it out:

http://insights.ubuntu.com/news/juju-bundles-and-quickstart-create-an-entire-cloud-environment-in-seconds/

Making the World More Secure, Instantly…

December 23, 2013 Leave a comment

This week a new Juju Lab was launched: Instant Single Sign-on and 2-Factor Authentication. The Juju Lab is a new direction for Juju Innovation in which a community of contributors builds a revolutionizing solution for a common problem. This time the problem is how to make the world more secure instantly. Juju Labs works like Kickstarter. Either goals are met and the project becomes a full Juju solution or the project dies.

Future Juju Labs are being considered. Everything from enterprise Java auto-tuning, instantly scaling PHP, instant legacy integration, instant BI, etc. As long as it solves a common problem in an exponentially better way, creating a Juju Lab is an option.

The main problem is how can you quickly evaluate which common problem to tackle first. Any ideas are welcome…

The Ryanairs Of Telecom are Here…

December 17, 2013 Leave a comment

After years of virtually no innovation from telecom operators, 2014 will be different. Not because telecom dinosaurs have all of a sudden become lean mean innovation machines. Quite the contrary. Most operators are still focusing on rolling out THIS YEAR’s (instead of today’s) “innovative” service which will be just a copycat of some famous dotcom.

So why the excitement?
2014 will be the pivot year. The year that will be marked in history books as the year old school lost and innovators won.

The first Ryanair-like disruptive telecoms will leave their borders and start bankrupting “traditional telecoms”. Cross-platform voice/video 4G apps will reach the tipping point. Cloud Telco PaaS will be reality. Individual communication solutions or iCommunication will be a reality. Web 3.0 will include voice & video communication. NFV will be driven by non-telecom players. WAN SDN will be deployed by more than only Google, Amazon, etc. Cloud Media Streaming will reach the tipping point. Internet of things will meet Cloud will meet Big Data will meet Mobile will meet disruptive communication solutions. Early adopters paradise…

2014 will be an exciting year for those that love telecom innovation!!! Bit pipe nightmares becoming reality for others.

Telco innovators and the rest…

November 24, 2013 Leave a comment

2014 will be the year in which telecom will be split into two. The ones that understand iCommunication and the ones that don’t. iCommunication is about giving a personalized communication experience to consumers and enterprises. Low cost subscription models and freemium will be the main business models. Low-cost pay per use is still possible but not for messaging or voice traffic. The value proposition needs to be higher.

What will this mean?
Bit pipes will become a reality in Europe and possible in the US (mainly dependent on what Google and others do). Telecom operators massive head count reductions. Nokia & Blackberry will be joined by other one time big telco names. The end of the world for some. Especially for those that belief telecom is a dividend generator or a bottomless pit for license taxation…

For consumers and enterprises there will be a new world of communication possibilities. Communication will be fully integrated into back office systems, e.g. CRMs like Salesforce store all calls. Improvements in voice recognition will make talking to machines a natural interface. Managing contacts will become a breeze. Forget memorizing phone numbers…

Communication as a Service will be the big innovation. The Cloud, Big Data, IoT will meet IP communication. Whatsapp will have a bigger brother for voice and video. Unless Google and Apple surprise the market with joint IP-based communication over LTE and WiFi. Asia, Africa and Latam will have two more years but most of their operators will make the same mistakes as the European ones.

Bit pipes are not even a safe business because the Ryanair of telecom will be able to quickly pickup mobile licenses and networks of the third/forth player, the one that goes bankrupt.

Things will not look nice for the next three years for some but we all knew that it was going to come for the last 10-15 years. Any CxO that calls this an unforeseen disruptive technology should be fired on the spot. The next edition of the Innovators Dilemma does not have to go back to the last century for examples. This is a textbook case for MBA students for years to come…

Launching new telecom services daily…

November 8, 2013 1 comment

Although I changed the focus of Telruptive to move away from trying to help the telecom operators avoid becoming bit pipes, I want to give them one last chance. I will be speaking at the Telecom Application Developer Summit in Bangkok. The summary of my talk on Friday is: “How to launch new telecom services daily…”.

Sounds impossible? I will be explaining how it can be done and doing demos. So if you are working for a soon to be bit pipe and you want to try to escape this fate, then I suggest you come and see the session…

Categories: Disrup. Technology

Solving the pressing need for Linux talent…

September 17, 2013 Leave a comment

The Linux Foundation shared the below infographics recently.  Click on it and you get the associated report. The short message is, if you are an expert in Linux you are in high demand because companies don’t find enough experts due to the Cloud and Big Data boom.

Unless cloning machines are discovered later this year, quickly expanding the number of Linux experts is unlikely to happen. This means total cost of ownership for enterprises is likely to rise. This is ironic since Linux is all about open source and providing some of the most amazing solutions for free.

The obvious alternative is to focus on Microsoft products. They are relatively cheap in total cost of ownership since licenses are “payable” and average Windows skills can be easier found.

However Microsoft is loosing the server war, especially in the web application space. So this is not a winning strategy if you are going to do Cloud.

How to solve the pressing need for Linux talent?

The only possible strategy is to lower the number of experts needed per company. Larger companies always will need some but they should be focused on the “interesting high-value tasks”. This concept of interesting and high-value is key. With the number of cloud servers exploding, we can not expect the number of experts to explode.

Open source products like Puppet and Chef have helped to alleviate the pain for the more “skilled” companies. One DevOp was able to manage more than ten times as many machines as before. Unfortunately these server provisioning tools are not for the faint of heart. They  require experts that know both administration and coding.

It is time for the next generation of tools. Ubuntu, the number #1 Cloud operating system, is leading the way with Juju. If Linux wants to continue to be successful then the common problems, the boring problems, the repetitive problems, etc. should be solved. Solved by Linux gurus in such a way that we, the less IT gifted, can get instant solutions for these common problems.

We need a Linux democracy in which the lesser skilled, but unfortunately the majority, can instantly reuse best-in-class blueprint solutions. Juju is a new class of tools that gives you instant solutions. For all those common problems: scaling a web application, monitoring your infrastructure, sharding MongoDB, replicating a database, installing a Hadoop cluster, setting up continuous integration, etc. Juju can offer solutions. The individual software components have been “charmed”. A Charm allows the software to be instantly deployed, integrated and scaled. However the real revolution is just starting. Juju will have bundles pretty soon. Technically speaking, a bundle is a collection of pre-configured and integrated Charms. In lays speak, a bundle is an instant solution for a common problem. You instantly deploy a bundle [one command or drag-and-drop] and you get a blue-print solution. Since Juju is open source, the community can create as many instant solutions as there are common problems.

So if you want to scale your IT solutions without stretching neither your budget or cloning your employees and without the lock-in of any proprietary and expensive commercial software, then you should try Juju today. Play with the GUI or install Juju today.

Instant Ruby on Rails – Instantly deploy and scale your rails app on any cloud

September 16, 2013 Leave a comment

Many developers and devops are doing a lot of repetitive tasks every day. One of them is deploying a web app and scaling it. We all know the theory for deployment: install an app server, install a database, deploy your app on the app server and your data on the database.

Scaling is also a common problem however several people already have answers for it: put a load balancer in front, duplicate your app server, create database slaves for read only data, create a database cluster for high volumes of writes, use in-memory or NoSQL databases for extremely high write volumes, use memcached for avoiding to go to the database, use Varnish to avoid going to the web server, etc.

So these are not new problems, more like common recurring tasks for devops and developers. What if instant solutions could be made available hence anybody in the world, independent of their level of knowledge, can instantly install a scalable solution?

At Ubuntu we think Open Source blueprint solutions for these common problems should be within everybody’s reach. Instantly deploying and scaling a rails app on any cloud is already a reality: https://juju.ubuntu.com/docs/howto-rails.html. The next step is to make it even easier. One command or drag-and-drop to deploy a complete stack in high-availability. Even one command to have continuous deployment + high-availability at once. This is exactly why we are organizing a contest to win $10,000 with 6 categories. Two of them should be familiar to you now: high-availability and continuous deployment.

Can you imagine the extra time you will gain if all common recurring problems would instantly disappear? Especially if you think what is common and recurring for some experts might be rocket science for the rest of us. If you haven’t played around with Juju, then this is the best time ever…

 

Startups: Want to launch new features hourly?

If you read sites like highscalability.com you will have certainly read about those big name dotcoms that deploy new features to production up to tens of times a day. For most startups bringing features to production is still a manual, at best semi-manual process. You have the odd start-up that has it all automated, but unfortunately this is often a signal that they have too much time on their hands which points towards more critical problems.

What if startups would not have to worry about how to set-up hourly feature deployment? What if they could get an open source solution that delivers them flexible and highly scalable continuous deployment in minutes?

What if Startups could launch new features faster than the top DotComs and scale almost as good?

If this sounds attractive to you or you know a start-up to whom it would be, then you should visit this blog post. Ubuntu has launched a beta program and if enough startups sign up, then they will build an instant and scalable open source continuous deployment solution for them.

Deploying multiple services on one cloud server instantly…

There was a new release of Juju this week, 1.11.3, that brought a “small feature” with a big impact on your AWS bill. You are now able to deploy multiple services on one cloud server instantly. Before Juju started a new server per service which resulted in a potentially high AWS bill.

If you want to use the new feature you need to work with the development version of Juju Core. To install Juju on AWS just copy the below code into a file, e.g. installjuju.sh, make it executable: chmod u+x installjuju.sh and execute it: ./installjuju.sh


#!/bin/bash
echo "Installing Juju. Asks for your password."
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:juju/devel -y
sudo apt-get update -y
sudo apt-get install juju-core -y
if [ ! -f ~/.ssh/id_rsa ]; then
echo "Generating SSH Keys."
ssh-keygen -t rsa -b 2048
fi
if [ ! -f ~/.juju/environments.yaml ]; then
echo "Generating environments.yaml."
juju generate-config -w
fi
echo "Your AWS Access Key, followed by [Enter]:"
read awsaccesskey
echo "Your AWS Secret Key, followed by [Enter]:"
read awssecretkey
sed -i -e "s/# access-key: /access-key: $awsaccesskey/" ~/.juju/environments.yaml
sed -i -e "s/# secret-key: /secret-key: $awssecretkey/" ~/.juju/environments.yaml
echo "Bootstrapping Juju."
juju bootstrap

Afterwards you can start deploying services. If you want them to run on the same server you need to know the number of the server. Juju status will tell you this:

juju status

The bootstrap server is 0. New machines will be starting with 1 and go up. So if we want to install wordpress then we need to do the following:

juju deploy mysql --to 0 # deploy mysql to machine 0
juju deploy wordpress --to 0 # deploy wordpress to machine 0
juju add-relation mysql wordpress # create wordpress tables
juju expose wordpress # make wordpress accessible.
juju status # get the IP/URL of wordpress

Now you can log into WordPress. Your URL should look something like this:
http://ec2-<some numbers>-.compute-1.amazonaws.com

When you are done:

juju destroy-environment

Ubuntu Edge – The largest Crowd-funding experiment in history

Traditionally manufacturers would build a product, stock their warehouses and hope they sell it. “Build it and they will come”, was the norm. A very expensive strategy. Crowd-funding websites have changed this. Start-ups are now able to create a prototype, shoot a video and see if people will love the product without investing any massive amounts of money.

Today is a special day because crowd-funding can change forever. Today Canonical announced the largest crown-funding experiment ever. Where Pebble asked for $100K, got oversubscribed 100 times and ended up getting around $10M, Canonical is aiming for $32M from the start.

So who is Canonical and how will they pull this off? Canonical is the company behind Ubuntu, the most popular open source Linux distribution that runs over 50% of the Operating Systems in public clouds like Amazon AWS.

Canonical will be presenting the Ubuntu Edge, an awesome phone that will push the limits of mobile communication as we know it. It is the first phone that is “your PC in your pocket”. A phone that you hook up to a screen and a keyboard and you can use as a laptop. With 4GB of memory it has similar specs as a laptop. The Ubuntu Edge also has an Edge in usability. Everybody that was able to use the Ubuntu phone operating system will tell you that it is one of the easiest phones out there. Swipe from the left and you have all your most used apps, not only 4. Swipe from the top and you have full control of your Wifi, network, etc. Gone are the days that you had to push: Settings, Wi-Fi, etc. Without lifting a finger you pick your wifi. Right-slide switches between your apps. Bottom-slide gives you an in-app menu that changes based on the current app.

So what about mobile apps. That is exactly the reason why crowd-funding is used. All Ubuntu enthusiasts will be able to get their hands on an Ubuntu Edge. These are the top computer experts in this world. The top Geeks. The people that recompile an operating system kernel for fun. So expect them to come up with apps that push boundaries because the Ubuntu Edge is the only phone that is completely Open: Open Source, Open Hardware and Open Funding. Find more here: igg.me/at/ubuntuedge

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