Cloud Foundry (CF) is the most mature Platform as a Service (PaaS) on the market today. There are dozens of production environments available for anyone around the world to test, develop, and deploy their applications in production.

To enable the CF community to share their experiences, the Cloud Foundry Foundation (CFF) has created a series of mini-conferences called CF Days. They’re hosted all over the globe, usually by one of the many CFF sponsors.

During IBM’s first Index conference for open source developers in San Francisco, I was asked to help lead the organization of a CF Day. Following is a summary of our fun and informative day, along with photographs and links to short summaries of the day’s talks. We put the focus on important new information.

Agenda and organization

Organizing our CF Day wasn’t difficult simply because of the abundance of riches when it comes to CF engineering in San Francisco and the Bay Area. Index 2018 was hosted at Moscone, literally a block from Pivotal’s headquarters and a couple of blocks from many other key CF contributing company offices, including IBM.

Our primary challenge was in selecting a program with diversified topics, the depth to which those topics would be addressed, and the level of CF experience of the presenters. Luckily, we had about three weeks to decide on an agenda, which we set by invitation rather than a selection process. My goal was to leverage the engineering talent nearby but to also include newbies from the community and make it a program that everyone could learn from.


After approaching various leaders in the CF communities at Pivotal and resolving any schedule conflicts, we created an agenda that included five speakers, and we added a panel to complete the day.

  1. Top 10 Recent and Upcoming Improvements to CF CLI
  2. Advanced Apps and Service Brokers on Cloud Foundry
  3. Hybrid Cloud with Cloud Foundry and GCP Services
  4. New Strategies for Managing BOSH Deployments

Panel: Future of Container-based PaaS and how can different communities work better together

We concluded the day with a panel of distinguished members of the CF community, plus one from Docker, who discussed ways that different cloud OSS communities can collaborate while remaining innovative. Members of the panel included:

  1. Patrick Chanezon, Docker
  2. Nima Kaviani, IBM
  3. Julian Friedman, IBM
  4. Eric Malm, Pivotal
  5. Swarna Podila, Cloud Foundry Foundation

I moderated the panel, and my goal was to try to engage the panelists on various topics and questions related to collaboration and innovation in OSS. In particular, I tried to raise the question of how to have different communities collaborate when their cultures are vastly different. For instance, in the CF community we pair and do test-driven development (TDD). In Docker and Kubernetes, these are optional. I guided the panel towards harder issues such as how to deal with duplicated efforts, and when to synergize vs. when to compete. This last question is especially important since Docker had recently embraced Kubernetes as its orchestration engine.

While I can’t claim we solved all these issues, based on the feedback I received the discussion was fruitful and the audience and panelists enjoyed the lively debate.


At the end of the day, audience participants were invited to mingle with panel members and other speakers. Many of the speakers then joined us at a local French restaurant for an IBM-hosted dinner.

Events like CF Day are designed to share the latest happenings in the CF community in a short, single-track format that enables interactions and community building. With our CF Day at Index 2018, we achieved exactly that.

By including a set of speakers presenting on topics ranging from beginner topic like Jay Badenhope’s Top 10 CF CLI tips to advanced topics like Danny Berger’s BOSH strategies talk, and by inviting speakers in various communities we hope the attendees took away something new and connected with leaders in the CF community as they continue their journey in the cloud.

If you’d like to meet other members of the CF community, myself included, make sure to register to join us in Boston next month for our larger Cloud Foundry Summit event. You’ll hear from a diverse set of speakers on multiple tracks, covering all aspects of the platform.

See you in Boston!

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