Kubernetes costs less, but less than what?

Let’s start with some gospel: In IT, there is no gospel. No definite “thou shalts” that always apply, 100% of the time. Thus spake Werner Vogels, Amazon CTO: “Building evolvable software systems is a strategy, not a religion. And revisiting your architectures with an open mind is a must.” This goes for all smart IT strategies. The right answer for a given team in a certain circumstance won’t necessarily apply to another team in a slightly different circumstance. “It depends” is the only answer that always applies—usually.

Which brings me to VMware’s survey data on developers and Kubernetes. By some measures, according to the survey, there’s never been a better time to deploy Kubernetes. But the real question, as Google’s Richard Seroter highlights, is “compared to what?” For example, when 50% of developers reported they’ve derived “improved resource utilization” from Kubernetes, it’s worth asking what the “anchor point” is, to use Seroter’s term. “It’s easy to believe these developer benefits of Kubernetes if the comparison is to classic IT infrastructure,” he notes, and he’s right.

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