Investors share how infrastructure as code trumps DevOps – TechCrunch


Infrastructure as code (IaC) has been adopted more and more by DevOps teams in recent years, but the complexities of setting up and managing data centers continue to create challenges and opportunities.

We interviewed top investors in IaC startups to find out more.

Overall, they see a lot of room for growth given all the manual work still being done by DevOps teams in organizations of all sizes.

However, IaC itself requires highly skilled engineers to implement and manage within organizations, and there is a dearth of software infrastructure engineers with IaC skills. This could favor IaC startups trying to deliver complete solutions to customers.

At the same time, some large companies will continue to manage data centers internally and therefore develop automation internally rather than with external startups.

We spoke to:

  • Sheila Gulati, Managing Director, Tola Capital
  • S. Somasegar, Managing Director, Madrona Venture Group
  • Aaron Jacobson, Partner, New Enterprise Associates
  • Sri Pangulur, partner, Tribe Capital
  • Teddie Wardi, Managing Director, Insight Partners
  • Tim Tully, Partner, Menlo Ventures

Sheila Gulati, Managing Director, Tola Capital

Can infrastructure as code be the solution for implementing and configuring servers, in the same way the cloud was the solution for physical servers? In which areas do you think IaC’s ability to configure any cloud resource will be used the most?

The modern cloud world has completely changed our perception of infrastructure. We live in a multicloud and multicloud world and these paradigms are redefining the modern cloud era. IaC can be used for any type of workload or cloud architecture, but it’s a necessity for anyone building on the modern cloud. This is especially true for modern cloud architectures such as serverless applications, containerized applications running Kubernetes, AI / ML, and more. Modern cloud architectures offer many benefits such as increased innovation, faster time to market, improved reliability and reduced costs. However, this has increased the burden of managing cloud infrastructure. The number of available cloud services is increasing every year and modern architectures are made up of many interdependent and loosely coupled services and APIs. The result is that the number of cloud resources that people have to manage is growing at a tremendous rate. The only way to handle this complexity is with IaC.

Today we are witnessing a new generation of IaC platforms designed from the ground up to meet the demands of the modern cloud. For example, Pulumi and its cloud engineering platform help infrastructure teams and developers tame the complexity of the cloud by allowing them to write code in the languages ​​they know and love, and use. software engineering practices to build, deploy and manage cloud infrastructure. Unlike legacy IaC tools that use domain-specific languages, modern IaC platforms give practitioners the full power of programming languages, making it easier to manage the complex interdependencies of modern cloud applications. They allow developers to use existing software development tools, including IDEs, package managers, and testing frameworks, allowing them to build faster and reuse best practices, while testing more frequently. .

Do you see IaC’s ability to streamline processes attracting startups to competitive industries looking to put their product first?

Yes. The companies in our portfolio that have adopted IaC and cloud engineering principles are also those most interested in developing products quickly and streamlining their ability to bring new products to market faster. It requires investments in engineering talent, platform, and engineering practices.

It is important to leverage new innovations in the cloud to accelerate innovation and leverage IaC to create more products to effectively meet customer needs. To support this, it is essential that there is a partnership between vendors within the IaC space to deliver the components that work together to support the engineering teams.

Additionally, we’ve seen teams move to more modern development platforms that can more easily hire better developers – a concern of every tech company today. The most advanced development cultures that truly embrace the left movement are where the best developers want to work!

Why are businesses reluctant to adopt infrastructure as code? Can you describe the different ways IaC providers can market themselves to increase their appeal?

IaC should be the obvious choice for any business that wants to deliver cloud applications at scale, reliably, and at high speed. The concerns of the past are now obsolete. However, companies may be reluctant to adopt it because of the culture and process changes required, the risks of migrating an existing application, or they may not have the right skills on their team. In the past, we also had IaC platforms that required the use of domain specific languages. All of these taken together can make the rise in productivity seem steep.

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