Nov 9th, 2022 - The Cycle Team

Cycle.io @ Kubecon 2022

Motor City, USA

Detroit, known by its nickname “Motor City'', is a bustling and beautiful city filled with dazzling architecture, food, history, and of course, people.This year, it was home to KubeCon 2022.

The city is close to home for Jake and I, 45 minutes from where we started Cycle; it was wonderful seeing how the city has grown the last few years. The art deco style buildings loomed overhead, and the smell of freshly cooked food wafted through the downtown area just outside the venue. There was an almost palpable sense of excitement - both for KubeCon, and what I attributed to the hopeful future of Detroit. It was the perfect place to gather for the equally bright future of devops and the container space.

Our first day of KubeCon kicked off and with masks donned we strolled into the Huntington Place. The first two days of KubeCon were dedicated to preparation and co-located events. So, with the expo not yet open and things still ramping up, we took a brief moment and drew up Cycle’s logo on the ‘graffiti wall’. As you can tell, neither of us are artists.

Our first day of KubeCon kicked off and with masks donned we strolled into the Huntington Place. The first two days of KubeCon were dedicated to preparation and co-located events. So, with the expo not yet open and things still ramping up, we took a brief moment and drew up Cycle’s logo on the ‘graffiti wall’. As you can tell, neither of us are artists.

After checking out the venue, we met up with the Equinix Metal team to do some filming for a partner promotional video (Coming Soon!), and were introduced to some of the folks from Dell. We learned a bit about what they were doing with devops, chatted a bit about how Cycle provides an alternative to Kubernetes, and were invited out to the welcome party they were putting on later in the evening.

A Quick Note About Cycle

Jake and I started Cycle because we had run into the complexities of devops over and over again. When we first learned about containers in 2015, we excitedly started planning a platform that could run anything, anywhere….and be user friendly enough that you actually would enjoy doing it. Along the way, we partnered with companies like Equinix and Vultr to help bring that vision to life, and today Cycle is a robust devops platform with simplicity at its core. In many ways, Cycle is a direct competitor with Kubernetes, but provides everything needed to scale your applications to millions of users without needing an entire team of devops engineers. It was built from the Linux kernel up, to provide a seamless and integrated experience unparalleled by any other devops solution. Multi/hybrid cloud from the start, Cycle will deploy to infrastructure you own, and manage everything for you.

The Expo

The next morning - after a quick breakfast at the hotel - we were fired up and ready to see everything happening in the container ecosystem. We didn’t know what to expect with the expo open, but were drawn in by the sheer size of it all. It was so massive, there was even a tram line running over the roof!

Nearly 300 expo booths lined the hall, the vast majority being companies in the container/kubernetes space, and the rest representing open source software groups that are involved in some aspect of the container ecosystem. To me, this was invigorating. The container ecosystem is alive and flourishing, with many companies focusing on pushing DevOps forward.

While Cycle has its own custom orchestration layer and is not built on Kubernetes, we still follow the OCI standard and have a shared vision with many of the companies we chatted with. Since 2015, Cycle has focused on reigning in the increasing complexities and challenges of devops, empowering anyone to build out and scale their applications. We spent a lot of time talking with attendees about the challenges they face in today’s ecosystem, and with many of the vendors trying to carve out their own niche - from dependency chain auditing to secrets management and everything in between.

This year it seemed that the world was more ready than ever to hear our message of simplicity contrasted against that of Kubernetes complexity.

Partners Tour

While visiting the expo, we made sure to visit all of Cycle’s infrastructure partners.

To kick off the tour, we stopped by and said hi again to our friends over at the Equinix Metal booth. They had some great swag, including a printed version of the Cloud Native Cookbook. Equinix was one of our first partners, and the ease with which Cycle users can deploy bare metal servers with the click of a button is mind blowing.

Next, we spent some time tossing a frisbee with the team at Vultr’s booth. Vultr’s wide array of infrastructure offerings has given Cycle users a lot of flexibility in the type and cost of servers they deploy.

Of course, we couldn’t forget AWS, an infrastructure partner that hardly needs an introduction. They had their own cold brew bar set up, and had no issues drawing a crowd!

Finally, we met up with our newest infrastructure provider, Google Cloud! We’re excited for the new doors that will open by running GCE infrastructure + Cycle.

Along with the infrastructure partners in attendance at KubeCon, Cycle has recently put our Infrastructure Abstraction Layer into production, opening up the door to on-prem and hybrid cloud deployments all managed by the platform. More details coming soon!

Meeting Up With Leaders In the Community

If you're reading this and you've gotten this far, there’s a good chance you know the name Kelsey Hightower. It can be a bit intimidating walking up to one of the most influential kubernetes advocates in the middle of their biggest event of the year and chatting about the differences in your product. But being the technology lover Kelsey is, he was more than gracious, and even nerded out a bit with me over some of Cycle’s tech.

He also was handing out signed copies of his book - awesome!

If you know Kelsey, well there’s a pretty good chance you also know Darren Shepherd. Former CTO of Rancher labs, and now Co-Founder of Acorn Labs, Darren has a huge presence in the container space. He was even featured on our podcast recently, be sure to [check it out]! This was my first time meeting Darren, and after the introduction, excitedly started discussing some of the pros and cons of building software completely in-house, and how to scale companies like Cycle and Acorn.

Though Acorn is currently targeted for Kubernetes, we are looking at ways we can work together, so stay tuned for more in the near future!

As it turns out, we were so deep in conversation we forgot to grab a photo together!

Takeaways

Kubernetes has solidified its place as a top contender for orchestrating container workloads for enterprise level organizations; I don’t think anyone will argue its importance in the container ecosystem. By attending KubeCon, I expected to find a lot of folks who were enamored with Kubernetes, but what we found was a trove of open minded, sometimes frustrated, developers looking to bring the latest technology to their companies and reduce their costs and workload - something Cycle excels at.

Offering an easier-to-use platform, without taking away any of the power devops engineers expect with a Kubernetes solution, is resonating now more than ever. We chatted with many folks who were overwhelmed with getting started in Kubernetes, or have been running it in production for awhile and have found maintaining it is costly and difficult. People are hungry for a better way, and Cycle is poised to lead.

💡 Interested in trying the Cycle platform? Create your account today! If you need any additional assistance setting up and using the Cycle Certificate Manager, get in touch with us via the Cycle Slack community to connect with our dev team and other Cycle users.