Interoperability, Enterprise Readiness Key Goals for Rackspace OpenStack Foundation Board Members

Rackspace is pleased to announce that OpenStack Principal Architect Egle Sigler and Vice President and Associate General Counsel Van Lindberg were both chosen last month to serve additional terms on the OpenStack Foundation Board of Directors.

The Foundation promotes the global development, distribution and adoption of the OpenStack cloud operating system, serving more than 30,000 members in more than 170 countries.

Like the software itself, individual membership in the Foundation is free. It exists to serve developers, users and the entire ecosystem by providing a set of shared resources to grow the footprint of public and private OpenStack clouds. The board provides strategic and financial oversight of Foundation resources and staff.

Rackspace, which helped develop OpenStack five years ago and operates the world’s largest OpenStack cloud, remains deeply committed to this flexible, modular and open source computing software platform. Rackers have served the community on the OpenStack Foundation Board of Directors, the Technical Committee, and have led development of the software by serving as Project Technical Leads. Both Van and Egle’s continued service on the board demonstrates Rackspace’s unwavering investment and interest in the success of the community.

Lindberg begins this third term as a Platinum member, as part of Rackspace’s platinum level Foundation sponsorship. Sigler was re-elected by the community for a second term as an individual representative.

Sigler, a member of Rackspace’s elite Technical Career Track team and co-author of “DevOps for VMware Administrators” and the third edition of “the OpenStack Cloud Computing Cookbook,” plays key roles on the board as co-chair of both the DefCore committee and the Diversity Working Group.

The DefCore committee is focused on creating interoperability standards for OpenStack, and last year passed by-laws enabling the DefCore process. Creating standards is of strategic importance to the continued growth and scope of OpenStack, Sigler says.

“With OpenStack projects growing in size and scope each release, users depend on the operators for what APIs will be implemented or not. We’ve seen that the lack of common interoperable guidelines result in operators running slightly different implementations of OpenStack. That accidentally locks users to a flavor of OpenStack, and that lock-in is bad for growing our ecosystem. We want users to have the flexibility to use multiple OpenStack environments.”

The committee needs help from the community in two ways, she said: data and involvement.

“Right now, collecting data is very important. To provide us with data, DefCore tests use RefStack,” she said. “RefStack is a tool that helps with interoperability testing. Uploading your cloud data to RefStack will help us figure out what is being widely deployed.”

The Diversity Working Group was formed to create and monitor programs to help increase the diversity of the OpenStack Community.

“The main lesson I’ve learned since getting involved with diversity issues (Sigler is also part of the Women of OpenStack Community and served on the board of the Professional Organization for Women’s Empowerment at Rackspace) is that there is a difference between diversity and inclusion. There is a saying that I really like, ‘diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance.’ We’re really focused on making the OpenStack community more inclusive.”

Check out this video of Sigler on diversity at the OpenStack Summit in Tokyo:

An attorney with a software engineering background, Lindberg leads Rackspace’s intellectual property program and heads up the company’s public policy team, and co-chairs the Technical Career Track team at Rackspace. He also sits on the Foundation’s DefCore committee, and reiterated the important of interoperability for OpenStack’s continued growth.

“Being able to see all OpenStack clouds, public and private, as one large open interconnected cloud will really unleash the network effect,” he said.

Lindberg said he has two personal goals as a board member this year, as well: boosting enterprise readiness and lowering barriers to entry into the OpenStack community.

“It’s critical that we continue to address enterprise clients’ needs,” he said. “Efforts like the OpenStack Innovation Center, which Rackspace launched in partnership with Intel last year to accelerate OpenStack’s enterprise capabilities, will be key, and it’s important that those same efforts are made at the Foundation level.”

He’d also like to see the Foundation support more local and virtual events around the globe, making it easier and less expensive for more people to get involved in the OpenStack community.

“The strength of OpenStack lies in its community,” Lindberg said. “The more open and accessible we can make it, the stronger it becomes, and I believe the Foundation can play a key role in that.”

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