Steering Kubernetes to an application-centric future

Microsoft’s Open Application Model and Rudr will help us build multicloud distributed applications that can install and run anywhere

Steering Kubernetes to an application-centric future
Maersk / IBM

Kubernetes is the cloud’s breakout success story. It’s gone from nothing to the application development equivalent of a superstar in only a few years, a rapid growth that’s left developers looking for better ways to build and manage Kubernetes-hosted applications.

There have been plenty of workarounds and extensions. Tools such as Helm make it easy to deploy resources to clusters, whereas CNAB (Cloud Native Application Bundle) wraps up applications and all their dependencies ready for deployment. At a lower level, services such as Draft help design and build basic services. You can build code and deploy it using familiar containers, and you can quickly assemble elements into Kubernetes applications. You can even automate management with Azure Kubernetes Services.

It’s probably not surprising for a tool that comes from a service infrastructure background (Google’s work on Borg), that Kubernetes and the tools around it fundamentally focus on operations. Distributed systems operations have long been a problem, and the whole data center OS movement, from Borg and Mesos, to Docker Swarm and Kubernetes, is much more the ops side of devops than it is the dev.

How do we go beyond that approach, to put the dev back in Kubernetes? We’ve done a lot of work building an ecosystem, codifying the patterns and practices that go into building a distributed application based on microservice principles. Now it’s time to put it all together and deliver that missing piece of the picture, the piece that’s essential to developers: an application-centric way of looking at Kubernetes.

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