Presentation: Are We Really Cloud-Native?

Track: Modern Java Innovations

Location: Empire Complex, 7th fl.

Duration: 2:55pm - 3:45pm

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What You’ll Learn

  1. Learn about cloud native, what it takes to do it right.
  2. Hear about what it means to do application development right in the cloud.
  3. Find out what are some of the skills and design decisions affecting functionality in a cloud environment.


As Java developers we are used to adjusting ourselves in heterogeneous environments and so over the last ten years or so we gained experience with PaaS, VMs, Containers, DevOps, Continuous Integration and Microservices Architectures. Now a new phenomena arises: building greenfield applications with the intent of using agile application development and architecting specifically for the Cloud a.k.a Cloud Native Computing. But are we really Cloud-Native because we use the latest and greatest in technology and run it on a (public) cloud platform? The modern Cloud is much more than just a virtualization platform. And is Java even a natural fit in such environments?   

In this talk I will go beyond the hype of being Cloud-Native and focus instead on what being Cloud-Native actually requires in terms of skills and experience for Java Developers and how it will affect and impact traditional systems design.


What is the focus of your work today?


I have a pretty broad role at Luminis where I'm both in the leadership team but also a trusted adviser to some of my customers. My technical backgrounds is both in Java and cloud technologies. I consider myself to be a Java and cloud postmodernist. I've been around long enough with Java, I've used the first bits that actually hit the Internet, the applets. I've seen the classical use of Java, I've seen the more modern use, and nowadays, especially in the cloud age there's what I like to call the postmodernist use of Java. This is what I'd like to talk about to customers and to my colleagues and to people attending conferences all over the place.


What's the motivation for your talk?


I think that using the cloud is typically not very new to most people nowadays. It has been around for like 10-15 years now, although I see a lot of my customers now turning to the cloud for real. They ran some experiments with it, they tried it out a few years ago but mostly for some of the wrong reasons. They thought they could use it to do cost savings. Now, especially with all of the analyst reports writing about how cloud is going to eat up mainstream application development, they turn to the  cloud for real. But then I see them still using it as a virtualization platform and I think the modern cloud is much more than that and that's what I try to educate people on.


How would you describe the persona for the talk?


I think the ideal attendee in this case is going to be someone with a lot of Java mileage under their belt. Maybe also some experience on the clouds, maybe wondering why it's so hard to do cloud native right. I think that will be the best fit. On the other hand, I have been doing similar talks like this before on microservices for example where  I also tend to talk to the occasional I.T. manager or architect.


What do you want that persona to walk away from your talk with?


Most of the things that I will be talking about are based on some real-life experience that we have, either at our own  company or at some of our customers. Although a lot of the topics which are part of this cloud native journey are not really new in terms of when they were coined, DevOps, microservices, etc., we've been talking about these things for years, I think doing them right is surprisingly hard still. What I'm aiming for is to give them some real-life insights into some of our projects and some of my customers' projects and what we've learned from that with regards to the cloud native journey.


What are the particular skills that Java developers need in order to work in this new cloud native way?


If you look at skillset and experience, for example, a few years ago when we were still doing typical mainstream development, maybe 70 to 80% of your time as a Java developer was about writing Java. Nowadays in cloud projects we see that if you're part of a DevOps team, there are so many other responsibilities and skills that are required of you that maybe you only spend like 30% of your time writing actual Java code, and this means that especially in terms of the skills that you need to master in order to do this right, there's a lot that's going to be asked from Java developers.


There are also occasions where perhaps a different language might be a better choice than Java.


Yeah, well they're spaces where Java will excel in the cloud, and there are spaces where you see lots of other languages. We'll talk about that too.

Speaker: Bert Ertman

Director of Technology @Luminis_eu

Fellow, and VP of Technology at Luminis. A frequent speaker on Java, Cloud, and software architecture all over the world. Book author, and serial conference organizer. Bert Ertman was awarded the coveted title of Java Champion in 2008, and is a JavaOne RockStar speaker and a two-fold Duke’s Choice Award winner.

Find Bert Ertman at

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