'Good, bad and beautiful' challenges feature at technology conference
11 Jul 2018
- Chris Oliver



Chris Oliver and James Hannah from the Scientific Computing Department recently attended the Continuous Lifecycle conference at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in London. Here Chris gives a brief account of the proceedings:

Queen Elizabeth II Centre in London


​Credit: QEII Conference Centre

The first two days featured talks in three streams on the subjects of Agile development, DevOps and container technology.

Particular highlights were the two compelling keynotes. The first was by Linda Rising (pictured left), a famous author and speaker in software Linda Rising.jpgdevelopment, who spoke about using trials – which she dubbed the good, the bad and the beautiful – in organisations. She advocated using small, cheap and fast trials of new processes and technologies rather than committing whole-heartedly to a new process and then reverting back later on.

The second keynote was by Alexis Richardson (pictured below)  from the Cloud Native Computing Foundation about GitOps. This is a new approach to DevOps that makes it easier for developers to adopt because it revolves around Git, a familiar tool to software engineers that allows tracking of different versions of code.Alexis Richardson - image Roger Suffling.png

​​Another interesting insight came from Amy Nicholson, whose team develops the Financial Times website. They have an A/B testing tool, which is a form of statistical test to measure the effect of changing features of the website. They have started applying it to test headlines themselves rather than just website features, a novel use of the technique which is now common across the Financial Times.

The final day consisted of several workshops on DevOps technologies, including Kubernetes and continuous deployment.

Chris participated in one of these workshops on Kubernetes and said that it gave a really comprehensive overview of the major topics surrounding the technology, and included references to cutting-edge software that builds on Kubernetes, something he and his colleagues might find useful in their own work.

The conference is an annual event, and given the growing interest in DevOps, Agile and containers, probably one to look out for in the future.


More information: Continuous Lifecycle Conference website​


Linda Rising - credit: Continuous Lifecycle website

 Alexis Richardson - credit: Roger Suffling

Contact: O'Sullivan, Marion (STFC,RAL,SC)