First Day at WSO2

You and I probably do not make a page-turning career move each day.  Pivotal moments are often far apart.  After eight years at Burton Group (and Gartner), I am excited to start my new career chapter today by joining WSO2 as Vice President of Technology Evangelism.
  • How many organizations provide an opportunity for you to be a pioneer and define the industry?

My former employers, Burton Group and Gartner, provided the opportunity to be a pioneer and define the industry.  Industry analysts are not directly in the trenches crafting strategies and tactics. The Burton Group and Gartner business model precludes close interaction with end-user projects and implementation throughout its life cycle.  WSO2 provides me with an opportunity to directly interact with teams building real world solutions, evaluating technologies and products, and defining tomorrow’s development best practices.  My role will be to raise visibility, awareness, and knowledge of the WSO2 Carbon and Stratos platforms.  The opportunity enables me to increase the value you gain from adopting technology.

  • How many companies combine an intense focus and a dynamic culture open source with leading edge technologies?  
  • How many companies have an open mindset providing you latitude to innovate, re-invent, and forge their direction?

Not many in my book.  On my ‘boot-up call’ today (yes, true business savvy techies at the helm), Sanjiva, Jonathan, and Paul suggested compelling and telling first assignments:

  • Build an evaluation framework to compare Stratos against the competition.
  • Describe your vision for Platform as a Service and how Stratos meets the vision or should evolve.

Since the end of the last century (circa 1996), my technology vision has been centered on Java, Service Oriented Architecture (SOA), Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), lean middleware, and open source frameworks.  WSO2 is innovating within these technology topic areas and delivering a unique product incorporating leading edge technologies (e.g. OSGI, AMQP, Big Table ), sophisticated capabilities (e.g. multi-tenancy, elastic scale, provisioning, caching), and best practices (e.g. REST, NoSQL, service development).  Because the platform is delivered as open source, everyone (including you and me) can extend the platform and rapidly realize an ideal solution.  While Carbon and Stratos are competitive today, WSO2 is defining a strategy to fully eclipse other offerings tomorrow.

Many vendors are cloud-washing their existing application servers.  For example, some vendors simply re-brand clustered application servers hosted on virtual machines as cloud platforms.  Sure, operational provisioning scripts help by reducing project startup lag, but we all know organizations spend 80% or more of application cost during the maintenance phase.  Within Gartner, we had many debates over the cloudy continuum, and whether shared hardware (cloud via hardware virtualization) enables development teams to maximize the benefits Cloud promises.  While re-hosting applications on Virtual Machine Platform as a Service (VM-PaaS) style infrastructure does provide time to market benefit, you will not obtain maximum return from your Cloud investment.  A better strategy is to choose a platform based on improved frameworks, languages, and methodologies, which align the entire platform stack with Cloud characteristics.

By joining WSO2, I have the opportunity to communicate how you can significantly increase your team’s productivity and efficiency by adopting innovative Platform as a Service offerings.  I am looking forward to working with Sanjiva, Paul, Jonathan, Samisa, and the entire WSO2 team to accelerate the middleware platform’s reinvention and transform how development teams design, develop, and deploy applications and services.

Whether you are a developer, architect, or C-level executive, I look forward to working closely with you, helping you achieve your goals, and position you for your next rewarding career chapter.

You can follow my impressions, experiences, and guidance at my blog.

To the stratosphere and beyond….

/Chris
@cobiacomm

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