Podcast: Play in new window | Download
Steve Herrod led engineering at VMWare as the company scaled from 30 engineers to 3,000 engineers. After 11 years, he left to become a managing director for General Catalyst, a venture capital firm. Since he has both operating experience and a wide view of the technology landscape as an investor, he is well-equipped to discuss a topic that we have been covering on Software Engineering Daily: the integration of cloud and edge computing.
Today, we think of the cloud as a network of large data centers operated by big players like Google, Amazon, and Microsoft. The cloud is where most of the computation across the world takes place. My smartphone and laptop are “edge” devices. They are lightweight computers that don’t perform much complex processing. I would not be able to run a large production database or a 3 terabyte MapReduce job on my laptop.
The current division of labor makes sense in this world of smart clouds and low-power, low-bandwidth devices. But the devices are getting cheaper, smarter, and more proliferate. Cars, drones, security cameras, sensors and other devices can serve as points of computation that are geographically between the edge devices and the cloud. With more devices between you and the cloud, there is an opportunity to put computation on those devices.
Everyone knows that cloud and edge computing will become intermingled in the coming years. But predicting just how it will play out is nearly impossible. And as an investor, if you bet on something too early, you get the same result as someone who was wrong altogether.
A good analogy for the “cloud and edge” space of investments might be the “smart home.” Everyone knows the smart home is coming eventually, but it’s very hard to tell how long it will be before smart home systems are in widespread use–so it is an open question how to invest in the space.
Summer internship applications to Software Engineering Daily are also being accepted. If you are interested in working with us on the Software Engineering Daily open source project full-time this Summer, send an application to email@example.com. We’d love to hear from you.
If you haven’t seen what we are building, check out softwaredaily.com, or download the Software Engineering Daily app for iOS or Android. These apps have all 650 of our episodes in a searchable format–we have recommendations, categories, related links and discussions around the episodes. It’s all free and also open source–if you are interested in getting involved in our open source community, we have lots of people working on the project and we do our best to be friendly and inviting to new people coming in looking for their first open source project. You can find that project at Github.com/softwareengineeringdaily.
Transcript provided by We Edit Podcasts. Software Engineering Daily listeners can go to weeditpodcasts.com/sed to get 20% off the first two months of audio editing and transcription services. Thanks to We Edit Podcasts for partnering with SE Daily. Please click here to view this show’s transcript.