Speed, Agility Key To OpenStack ‘Superusers’

At previous OpenStack Summits, the spotlight was squarely trained on the users – the developers and companies using OpenStack to power and change their businesses. And at OpenStack Summit Atlanta on Monday, a new breed of OpenStack user was introduced: the superuser.

These superusers are doing real business on OpenStack today, Bryce said. They’re leveraging OpenStack to design, create and build software instead of buying it.

“It’s no longer just passive consumption of software that some vendor sells you on a two- or three-year cycle,” Bryce said, adding that we’re now living in a “software defined economy.”

Superusers are turning to OpenStack for speed, said OpenStack Foundation COO Mark Collier. They need to move faster than their competition. “It’s all about who can move faster,” he said., noting that companies that prioritize speed will win.

“Every company has to move faster,” he said. “Every company has to compete with a startup.”

Superusers represent a shift in the OpenStack user landscape as the open source cloud operating system further infiltrates the enterprise. To illustrate, the OpenStack Foundation welcomed several household names to the keynote stage to highlight how OpenStack improves their businesses: AT&T, Disney, Sony and Wells Fargo.

Disney Director of Cloud Services and Architecture Chris Launey said the old software model required users to choose whether they wanted a solution that’s good, cheap or fast, and typically only two out of the three attributes applied. With OpenStack, he said, the focus is on “fast, fast, fast.” Achieving speed will help cost and quality fall into place.

“If you give somebody enough fast, they can make their own cheap,” he said, later adding that OpenStack also enables businesses to make their own good by speeding up development cycles leading to faster innovation. He joked that OpenStack is like ordering a “faster lover’s pizza with an extra helping of faster.”

That speed, Launey said, enables Disney to develop and go to market much faster. Disney was able to launch a pilot program around OpenStack in just three months.

Cisco, too, is developing new features and products faster thanks to OpenStack. Cisco Operations Architect Reinhardt Quelle said the velocity of Cisco’s app development has greatly increased.

Glenn Ferguson, head of private cloud enablement at Wells Fargo, said OpenStack gives the financial institution a new level of control and adds speed, flexibility and agility that helps Wells Fargo stay competitive.

“Your infrastructure has to keep speed with software,” Ferguson said.


Rackspace specialists will host a number of talks and sessions throughout OpenStack Summit Atlanta May 12 through May 16. Here’s a full lineup of our Summit activities.

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