Business model driven cloud adoption - what NI is doing in the cloud

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NI's approach to using cloud computing and DevOps to deliver high quality SaaS offerings to our customers

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  • Just kidding about the black holes.
  • http://www.amazon.com/Discover-Your-Strengths-Marcus-Buckingham/dp/0743201140
  • Why niwsc.com? What does it stand for?Well, we suggested a bunch of domain names (like labview.com, natch) but management and product marketing ended up just picking something deliberately innocuous and semi-meaningless. “wsc” doesn’t really stand for anything, though you can plausibly create backronyms for it – “Web service.. Computers, or something!”
  • I trust you’ve all seen UI Builder by now. If not, ni.com/uibuilder.
  • Running in browser (can also run out of browser).Can save files to cloud or to local disk.Compiles happen in the cloud.
  • And it’s purty. We’ll use it in the demo!
  • A “cloudlet” is a term we made up, it’s a single product instance running in the cloud.
  • “Send it to the cloud!” Using the cloud should be extremely simple in your GUI.
  • You will notice the standard framework that this shares with UIB – we have created a cloud framework to supply cloud apps with the various things they need.
  • Would You Like To Know More? http://www.pachube.com/Good news – the Internet of Things is a hot Web trend! Bad news – of 2009. Machschnell! http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/top_5_web_trends_of_2009_internet_of_things.php
  • PIE: Would You Like To Know More? http://www.slideshare.net/mxyzplk/pie-101
  • So who wants to guess how many cloud servers we have?
  • Business model driven cloud adoption - what NI is doing in the cloud

    1. 1. National Instruments<br />
    2. 2. Business Model Driven Cloud Adoption: What NI Is Doing In The Cloud<br />Ernest Mueller<br />Cloud Architect, LabVIEW R&D<br />ernest.mueller@ni.com @ernestmueller http://theagileadmin.com<br />
    3. 3. The Short Form<br />We built a DevOps team to rapidly deliver new SaaS products and product functionality using cloud hosting and services (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS) as the platform and operations, using model driven automation, as a key differentiating element.<br />With this approach we have delivered multiple major products to market quickly with a very small staffing and financial outlay.<br />
    4. 4. National Instruments (aka “NI”)<br />30 years old; 5000+ employees around the world, half in Austin, mostly engineers; $873M in 2010<br />Hardware and software for data acquisition, embedded design, instrument control, and test<br /><ul><li>LabVIEW isour graphical dataflow programming language used by scientists and engineers in many fields</li></li></ul><li>From toys to black holes<br />
    5. 5. Genesis<br />Our hardware and software product strategy started to spawn software-as-a-service ideas – some from customer demand, some from internal drivers<br />There were existing product to Web integration points but these were uncoordinated and poorly maintained <br />LabVIEW R&D greenfielded an internal group in 2009 to serve as a sort of internal ISV for hosted services, the dotCom team<br />
    6. 6. Challenges<br />Poor R&D/IT relationship<br />Traditional siloed IT department (programmers split by business unit, infrastructure split by technology)<br />Low organizational IT agility – 6 weeks to get a server<br />Uptime problems from complexity and silos<br />On premise data centers at power/cooling capacity<br />R&D primarily experienced in desktop software and specialized, dedicated hardware, not server/Web/open<br />Consensus driven environment<br />
    7. 7. Now, Discover Your Strengths<br />Strong base of “best and brightest,” motivated employees<br />Culture of innovation and “do it yourself”<br />Large Web presence (ni.com) with extensive in house programming and operational experience<br />Entrepreneurial internal environment<br />Significant reinvention/retooling effort going on in R&D<br />Increasing focus on system sales and quality (performance, reliability, security) over yet-more-features<br />
    8. 8. Starting Fresh - Blessing and Curse<br />Everything was new, so we had to simultaneously develop:<br />Products<br />Team<br />Process<br />Systems<br />Code<br />Operations<br />System Automation<br />
    9. 9. The Products (“Hosted Services”)<br />Customer facing:<br />LabVIEW Web UI Builder (In early access)<br />LabVIEW FPGA Compile Cloud (In beta)<br />Technical Data Cloud (In alpha)<br />More in progress!<br />Internal facing:<br />LabVIEW.com Cloud Framework<br />Cloud Hosting<br />Operations<br />
    10. 10. LabVIEW Web UI Builder<br /><ul><li>Write a LabVIEW(ish) app, save it to the cloud and run it there.
    11. 11. Build and deploy it to an embedded target and hook it up to Web services to give it a sweet UI
    12. 12. Also, an experimental testbed for LabVIEW changes
    13. 13. Freemium model – use it for free, packaging and deploying your app to a target requires a license (compiles run in the cloud) – try it at ni.com/uibuilder
    14. 14. Silverlight RIA, back end on Amazon (moving to Azure soon) – EC2, S3, SimpleDB -> Azure Wen roles & blob/table storage; Java/Linux/Apache/Tomcat and .NET/IIS/Windows</li></li></ul><li>
    15. 15.
    16. 16. LabVIEW Web UI Builder Cloudlet<br />WebLV<br />Compiler<br />WebLV Services<br />Browser<br />Security<br />Services<br />Project<br />Data<br />Web Server<br />Internal<br />Services<br />Auth Db<br />Routing<br />License Db<br />PIE<br />LDAP<br />DNS<br />Load<br />Balancer<br />Install<br />Services<br />Mgmt<br />Server<br />Gateway<br />File<br />Server<br />
    17. 17. LabVIEW FPGA Compile Cloud<br />LabVIEW FPGA compiles take hours and consume extensive system resources; compilers are getting larger and more complex<br />Implemented on Amazon - EC2, Java/Linux,C#/.NET/Windows, and LabVIEW FPGA<br />Also an on premise product, the “Compile Farm”<br />
    18. 18. LabVIEW FPGA Compile Cloud<br />NI Hosted Compile Service<br />User Login<br />& Rights management<br />Links to user account<br />& support<br />
    19. 19. LabVIEW FPGA Compile Cloud Cloudlet<br />FPGA<br />Server<br />LabVIEW<br />FPGA<br />FPGA Services<br />Security<br />Services<br />Web Server<br />LDAP<br />FPGA<br />Workers<br />FPGA<br />Worker<br />Internal<br />Services<br />FPGA<br />Worker<br />Routing<br />Auth Db<br />PIE<br />License Db<br />DNS<br />Load<br />Balancer<br />Install<br />Services<br />Mgmt<br />Server<br />Gateway<br />File<br />Server<br />
    20. 20. Technical Data Cloud<br />“I just want to upload my sensor data directly to the cloud, man.”<br />REST and LabVIEW API that lets you upload and retrieve discrete and waveform data<br />Welcome to the Internet of Things<br />Being built on Microsoft Azure – specific bits TBD, all .NET<br />
    21. 21. LabVIEW.com Cloud Framework<br /><ul><li>Platform that makes the magic happen by providing base plumbing for developers of SaaS apps
    22. 22. Core Services - reusable Web services and facilities
    23. 23. ILLS (internal login & licensing services) – distributed user repo and licensing, complete with feed from Oracle and self service user portal; Java/Tomcat, OpenDS LDAP, mySQL
    24. 24. PIE (Programmable Infrastructure Environment) – sets up systems for you, autoscales, deploys code; uses an XML model and runtime registry; Java – more on this later!
    25. 25. Building out a core platform? Didn’t that slow velocity? No.</li></li></ul><li>Core Cloudlet<br />Oracle<br />Browser<br />User<br />Portal<br />LDAPMaster<br />Internal<br />Services<br />Auth Db Master<br />Web Server<br />Routing<br />License Db Master<br />PIE<br />Email<br />Queue<br />DNS<br />Load<br />Balancer<br />Install<br />Services<br />Mgmt<br />Server<br />Gateway<br />File<br />Server<br />
    26. 26. The Team<br />DevOps!<br />Application architect<br />Systems architect (me)<br />2 developers<br />1 system automation developer<br />Operations lead<br />2 follow-the-sun operations staff in Malaysia<br />Work with other R&D product developer teams<br />Different orgs (LabVIEW, non-LV software, hardware)<br />Geographically distributed (Austin, Aachen, Bangalore, Singapore)<br />
    27. 27. The Process<br />Agile!<br />All systems work used the “developer” tools and systems as part of DevOps collaboration philosophy<br />Revision control (Perforce)<br />Bug tracking (HP)<br />Specs and reviews (Atlassian Confluence wiki)<br />Task tracking and burndown (JIRA/Greenhopper)<br />All members collaborate on all aspects of the product<br />Test driven development<br />
    28. 28. The Systems<br />Cloud!<br />After a quick cost assessment and experimentation, decided on Amazon EC2 as our initial hosting platform<br />Needed control and agility we wouldn’t be able to get internally – dynamic requirements, fast scaling<br />Needed Linux and Windows both for software support<br />Using multiple point SaaS providers for functionality (If it’s not core, outsource it!)<br />Agility and time to market far outweighed cost efficiency<br />
    29. 29. Code<br />REST!<br />All REST-based Web services<br />Multiple tech stacks - cloud and systems mgmt code mostly in Java, product code mostly in C#/.NET<br />Key cloud app architecture concerns – multitenant, parallel, asynchronous, loosely coupled, APIed, instrumented, resilient in dynamic/ephemeral environment<br />Developers deliver tests, monitoring, system model with their service<br />
    30. 30. Operations<br />The “secret sauce”!<br />Not just ticket handling or “keep the lights on.” Focus on delivering value to the customer and developer.<br />Provide performance management, availability, systems management, incident handling, security, log management, monitoring, rapid deployment<br />Inspirations: O’Reilly “Secret Sauce” paper, Velocity conference, Visible Ops book, Transparent Uptime blog<br />
    31. 31. System Automation<br />PIE!<br />The “Programmable Infrastructure Environment”<br />XML system model defines systems, services, code installs, runtime interaction<br />Runtime registry for systems info and eventing<br />PIE autobuilds the runtime system from the model – provisioning, software installs, monitoring integration<br />Perform orchestration and control on many instances of dynamic environments<br />
    32. 32.
    33. 33. Results<br />Win!<br />A continuous pipeline of products delivered quickly<br />LabVIEW Web UI Builder went beta in 2009, 1.0 in 2010<br />FPGA Compile Cloud went beta in 2010, 1.0 soon<br />Technical Data Cloud going beta soon<br />Unqualified happiness with cloud, DevOps approach<br />Not innovation vs. reliability – new approach gets both!<br />
    34. 34. Residual Challenges<br />Selling SaaS products is a challenge to our existing channels<br />Managing the collision of engineering and IT technology<br />Culture – building collaboration, mutual respect, and trust among globally distributed dev teams, ops, and others (QA, security, etc.)<br />Educating desktop developers on operational issues<br />Maintaining vision through rapid change<br />Cloud-compatible tooling still emerging<br />
    35. 35. Where do we go from here?<br />Complete the virtuous cycle of agile, cloud, mobile, social<br />Move to full continuous integration and deploy-on-demand, necessitating intense investment in testing<br />Uptake of Microsoft Azure (mostly complete)<br />Private cloud products<br />Look into Lean<br />Can DevOps be spread out into the enterprise? We’ll see.<br />More SaaS products, and product to Web integration more core to our product strategy<br />
    36. 36. Community Engagement<br />Austin is an awesome place for cloud work right now.<br />Austin Cloud User Group (acug.cloudug.org)<br />Austin OWASP (Open Web Application Security Project) chapter<br />SXSW Interactive<br />Events like this one<br />DevOps and devops-toolchain Google groups<br />Velocity conference, DevOpsDays, CloudCamps<br />

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