Why your business needs a digital transformation strategy.

Today every company, regardless of industry, is a technology company. I encounter businesses daily that are realizing the profound impact of integrating innovative technology into their business. One such business is a client that specializes in designing and manufacturing custom packaging solutions. The box builder. 馃摝 In the past, this client faced cumbersome inefficiencies in the sales cycle, characterized by prolonged and cumbersome interactions between prospective customers and their sales representatives....

June 30, 2023 路 Christian Scott

Creating evergreen value for clients.

The mark of a high-quality consultant is undoubtedly a portfolio of happy clients with successful outcomes. The thing is, there鈥檚 a lot more to creating those successful outcomes than one might initially expect. I find it鈥檚 not only the successful outcomes that create those happy clients who promote you to all their friends. It鈥檚 the little things; the daily and weekly habits, connections, conversations, and continual value and partnership a caring consultant can provide....

June 14, 2023 路 Christian Scott

How to deploy AI in containers with GPUs (and oblivion).

I found myself recently in need of a simple and reliable way to schedule container services across a menagerie of servers; some with GPUs and some not, for AI inferencing. The goal was to match containers which require a GPU with hosts that can provide one. I like docker swarm mode for it鈥檚 no-frills user experience, and decided to use it for this project. It turns out docker swarm provides a straightforward method for addressing GPU hardware....

May 30, 2023 路 Christian Scott

How to launch an app for business startups.

Launching a new app, product, or service is a huge milestone for any company. There鈥檚 always a lot of excitement (nervousness, too!) around product launches. To many, launch day seems like a roll of the dice: it goes well or it doesn鈥檛. Thankfully, there are some simple things you can do to make your launch successful. The first one is to rethink your launch strategy. Launch repeatedly. 馃殌 Many companies take a waterfall approach to releasing new products and services....

May 8, 2023 路 Christian Scott

How to create resilient digital products.

Any founder with a product in production knows the pain of waking up at 0200 to outage alerts, or support interruptions at family dinner. It can be rough and scaling support is challenging. Here are some things you can do to make your systems more resilient. Remove complexity. Simple systems are just easier to maintain. They fail less often, and in less interesting ways. Interesting failures are time-consuming, expensive, and annoying to deal with....

April 26, 2023 路 Christian Scott

Docker swarm on bare metal in 10 minutes.

I recently posted about Docker swarm mode; its somewhat uncertain history and future, which is strongly debated in our industry. Check out the previous post, for more on that debate and what I think is a resolution. TL;DR, I think it鈥檚 here to stay and it鈥檚 great for startups and small teams who need to build and deploy quickly. With that in mind鈥 Let鈥檚 deploy swarm mode. In this example, we鈥檒l look at how to get swarm mode up and running on bare metal servers from Equinix Metal....

April 24, 2023 路 Christian Scott

Simple microservices with swarm.

Swarm mode is easily my favorite feature in docker. It鈥檚 also the subject of heated debate, yet well-loved by some devoted proponents. Here鈥檚 my take on swarm and why I like it for smallish teams with a few projects. Stick around for a mini how-to after the rant. Just three words are required to wrangle a group of freshly minted Ubuntu servers into a functional, production-ready cluster: docker swarm init...

April 7, 2023 路 Christian Scott

A simple framework for startup product development.

I recently read a great chapter from Marty Cagan鈥檚 book 鈥淚nspired,鈥 called 鈥淪tartup product management.鈥 Within it lies a remarkably simple framework for creating new products when the runway is short and the risk of failure is high. It starts with an archetypal story of product discovery modeling (or lack thereof). 鈥淪omeone with an idea gets some seed funding, and the first thing he does is hire some engineers to start building something....

March 30, 2023 路 Christian Scott

Ship products on day 0.

Picture this. You have a new idea for a SaaS application; you spend 4 months getting through product validation and development of an initial alpha or beta version. Finally, the team attempts to deploy the initial version to prod. Everything breaks. The whole time, the team was developing stuff locally or in lower static environments, and now there are a bunch of extra hurdles to jump through to get it working in prod....

March 29, 2023 路 Christian Scott

Stop env blocking.

A DevOps constraint that many teams struggle with is providing self-service application environments while keeping them consistent. The two goals, much like the two opposing forces of Development and Operations teams, conflict with each other. Self-service means anyone authorized can utilize or provision an environment, and consistent means environments must be the same (to ensure apps tested in lower environments will function in prod). I often see the two principles manifest with an inverse relationship....

March 20, 2023 路 Christian Scott