ARCHITECHT Daily: Docker, DevOps, data and depravity

Here are a few items, all fairly disparate, that caught my attention yesterday that I want to call ou
ARCHITECHT
ARCHITECHT Daily: Docker, DevOps, data and depravity
By ARCHITECHT • Issue #59
Here are a few items, all fairly disparate, that caught my attention yesterday that I want to call out up top.
Docker buried the lede on Project Moby: If you read Docker’s blog post on this from Tuesday, the most important sentence might be the penultimate one: “All our open source collaboration will move to the Moby project.” Basically, Moby will be the home of the various components that comprise Docker’s Community Edition, such as containerd, LinuxKit, etc., and ideally they will be detached enough from Docker’s, (the company’s) products that anybody else can use them to build something competitive to Docker’s products.
This is actually kind of a big deal in terms of branding,               commercial development and community engagement, and Docker really did not communicate it clearly to begin with. For more clarification from Docker creator Solomon Hykes, and to get a sense of community confusion, check out this this discussion on the Moby GitHub repo.
Amazon CodeStar has sysadmins scared again: Amazon CodeStar is a new tool, announced yesterday, to help users easily spin up AWS resources for their application, and then transition them into the world of agile development. I viewed it as kind of an incremental new service, packaging up a lot of what AWS is already offering and has been pushing (at least implicitly) for years, with a much-needed shine job to help less-tech-savvy users get started.
However, the Hacker News discussion of CodeStar centered around how it will or won’t kill lots of DevOps jobs at SMBs that are just now making the transition to the cloud. I come down on the side of the debate that says “this won’t be such a big deal for jobs” (at least as currently constituted) but it’s a good discussion to read to get a sense of how folks are reacting to the increasing automation in the already-automated cloud. FWIW, I think container orchestration will have a much bigger impact on DevOps.
Steve Ballmer’s grand, possibly ineffective, data service: Steve Ballmer’s USAFacts website is, by all accounts (including mine), relatively nice to use and full of lots of good data. Its biggest problem—as pointed out by authors at both Ars Technica and The Atlantic—is that facts and data haven’t proven remarkably good at influencing public opinion lately. For many, many reasons, data is treated differently in business than it is in politics or personal matters, and that might never change.
About these AI “content moderation” services: Yesterday, AWS announced an API to help users flag inappropriate images. Microsoft announced something similar. Google released something in February. As a parent and web user myself, I love the idea of protecting my kid from explicit content where it doesn’t belong, or of reading fewer hateful rants in the comments section. I also get that this use case represents low-hanging fruit for monetizing AI models, so it makes perfect sense for cloud providers to offer these APIs.
A few things, though: (1) This is really a people problem, not a technology problem (I think, for example, that Facebook takes an inordinate amount of flack for its users actions); (2) companies obviously want to protect their platforms, but they should consider what legal liability they open themselves up to by actively monitoring content instead of relying on safe harbor laws; and (3) the machine learning technologies  on which these service are built are not foolproof; humans still must be in the loop.
For evidence on that latter point can be found here, here, here and probably in many other places. People being people, they will actively try to fool the systems.

Sponsor: Cloudera
Artificial intelligence
For the life of me, I don’t know why Facebook would want to open itself up to the inevitable PR backlash that will follow the first abuse/exploit of this capability. It would be a very cool tech in many other areas, though.
We already know this from research, but here’s a nice writeup of a startup called AtomWise that’s trying to prove it commercially.
qz.com  •  Share
Aside from the aforementioned content moderator, it also integrated AI capabilities with SQL Server so you can work on data where it lives, and announced a host of other machine learning capabilities.
Cloud and infrastructure
We spoke about CodeStar and the content-moderation stuff up top, but AWS also announced FPGA instances on EC2 and much more. Here’s the rundown.
My former Gigaom and Structure colleague Tom Krazit joined GeekWire as its cloud and enterprise editor. Here’s his first byline (it’s good, too).
The company has a very interesting approach to modernizing enterprise IT. Also, co-founder and CTO Peter Yared was a great podcast guest.
If Intel has created a viable and affordable universal memory, the effects on data centers would be enormous.
There are a handful of places around the U.S. with several large data centers, usually the result of good geology, climate and tax breaks. Reno, Nevada, is the latest.
And more or less replacing it with Kubernetes, with a side of OpenStack. Mirantis CEO Boris Renski’s quotes in this piece are blunt, and might hit closer to home than some folks like.
This is a level-headed analysis of how to start thinking about security for “serverless” applications.
snyk.io  •  Share
All things data
Sometimes you just need to ask for the data you need—in this case, the deepest medical secrets of 10,000 volunteers. It’s potentially risky to Google and the volunteers, the the payoff could be huge, too.
Chris Moody has a long history in data, especially at the intersection of enterprise IT and social media. It will be interesting to see where he focuses his investments.
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