Thoughts from OpenStack Summit Barcelona – Day 1 Keynotes

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The OpenStack Foundation holds its flagship event, the OpenStack Summit, twice yearly, with a North American event in the Spring and an international event in the fall. This time around the event’s being held in Barcelona, Spain. As is typical, the event got kicked off bright and early with a keynote session lead by Foundation executives.

What I’m generally looking to hear at the Summit keynotes are:

  1. User stories: What are end-users experiencing as they attempt to adopt OpenStack.
  2. Adoption patterns: What repeatable patterns are we seeing in OpenStack adoption?
  3. Project updates: How is the project evolving to meet user needs.

Day 1 keynotes are usually ecosystem and end-user focused, while day 2 keynotes usually focus on technology and the project. This year seemed to fit this pattern, with Spanish bank Banco Santander and media company Sky UK delivering solid, but short, keynotes highlighting their OpenStack deployment projects. We also heard from folks at Cambridge University who spoke on how OpenStack supports various scientific research efforts there. The Scientific Data Platform (SDP) supporting the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) is a particularly interesting project that will demand massive compute and store scale.

My takeaway PoV from the day 1 keynotes are:

  1. After a spell where we seemed to hear from the same users over and over, the Foundation did a nice job this time sharing some new and interesting enterprise case studies.
  2. The Telco/NFV use case continues to gain traction in the OpenStack community. This is no surprise, especially given a recent survey showed that 86 Percent of global telecommunications providers consider OpenStack to be important or essential to their success. This was evidenced in the fact that an NFV demo featured prominently in the Day 1 keynotes, and the fact that China Mobile won the OpenStack SuperUser Award this year, joining previous two winners AT&T and NTT.
  3. OpenStack’s container story is still muddled, and the strategy seems to be “let’s see how many directions we can run in at once.” But this judgement is perhaps a bit premature, as containers is one of the topics to be discussed tomorrow morning, so I’ll revisit this point after tomorrow’s keynotes.
  4. There’s some really interesting work happening in the Big Data and in particular the scientific computing spaces. We’ve been learning about CERN’s implementation of OpenStack for years, and it continues to evolve very nicely. This year we heard from Santander, whose OpenStack project is big-data focused, and from Cambridge University, which I mentioned above.

And now my play-by-play highlights.

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