Question

What are some values of cloud-native architecture?

Answer

Working at building cloud-native architectures can help a business to redesign and improve how it sets up and uses its IT systems.

The most fundamental value of cloud-native architecture is that these systems are built for the cloud, built in the cloud age, and designed specifically to be used via cloud platforms. That on its own is a compelling reason for some companies to build cloud-native architectures, but there are also concrete benefits related to how these systems work in the average enterprise IT environment.

One argument for cloud-native architecture is that it promotes the use of Kubernetes and other open technologies. Container virtualization is a technology that’s very compatible with cloud services, so that is one aspect of the sea change toward cloud-native systems, as opposed to legacy systems that were made to be used on one specific hardware platform.

Another corresponding point, mentioned by experts like Eric Wright at Turbonomic, is that cloud-native systems assume a “looser” IT structure with more independent and free-form components. In other words, the rigidity of a legacy system can be a restriction, and even though the looser build may involve less precision, engineers are building cloud-native systems to deal with the relative chaos of more distributed environments.

In addition, building cloud-native platforms helps to wean companies away from the idea that applications are tightly bound to certain physical resources. The process of network virtualization has introduced the dynamic allocation of things like CPU and memory, and a cloud-native design makes use of this philosophy, so in a sense, it makes systems inherently more modern. There are obvious benefits to next-generation systems that dynamically allocate resources, including efficiencies and scalability and in general, lower costs. Companies pay for the resources that they use, and shrink operational costs for different cost centers.

Many experts admit that there is a learning curve to cloud-native systems that may represent a barrier for some companies, and a challenge for others. However, the eventual adoption of cloud-native systems and the philosophy that go along with it will help a business to build a system that can grow with the times, something that can be scaled and improved to better fit the needs of the business five or ten years in the future.

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Justin Stoltzfus
Contributor

Justin Stoltzfus is an independent blogger and business consultant assisting a range of businesses in developing media solutions for new campaigns and ongoing operations. He is a graduate of James Madison University.Stoltzfus spent several years as a staffer at the Intelligencer Journal in Lancaster, Penn., before the merger of the city’s two daily newspapers in 2007. He also reported for the twin weekly newspapers in the area, the Ephrata Review and the Lititz Record.More recently, he has cultivated connections with various companies as an independent consultant, writer and trainer, collecting bylines in print and Web publications, and establishing a reputation…