Docking in Amsterdam

What you missed at the Dockercon Europe 2014

Coman Hamilton
© Joni Israeli / Docker

450 Docker fanatics gathered in Amsterdam to hear about Docker’s new orchestration features and enterprise offering.

There’s probably no more appropriate location for a Docker conference than on the docks of Amsterdam. As Solomon Hykes opens the conference, behind the stage ships are drifting past into the port of Amsterdam. “The only hash associated with this conference is hashtags,” jokes the Docker founder.

He welcomes CEO Ben Golub CEO with a typical developer compliment: “He may be wearing a suit, but he’s a hacker in spirit.”

Although this year’s conference was somewhat overshadowed by news of major competition to Docker, Golub doesn’t see the need to compensate. Even with investors in the audience, the CEO refrains from breaking out into proud corporate statements to remind everyone of Docker’s success.

In fact, Golub seems more concerned with the community than the financial success of Docker.

“Journalists always ask me, ‘If there’s a huge container revolution…which technologies are going to win and which are going to lose?'” Golub prefers asking the question: “‘Whose going to win if we make containers succeed?’ – We’re all going to win.”

During his opening keynote, Golub puts Docker in the context of publishing history, from Gutenberg to the internet. The latter  made it easier for everyone to publish their content – everyone except developers, that is. Developers “were kept back in the dark ages”, and this is something that Docker has changed.

Emancipating developers

Back when Docker started in Dec 2013, it was all about single containers and Docker Engine. Docker has since expanded to multi-containers, and from a hip startup audience to an enterprise offering, while allowing on- and off-premise applications. 20 months after the company first got started, there are “millions of developers” using Docker to ‘publish’ their content.

SEE ALSO: Docker announces enterprise expansion amid news of CoreOS competition

During the last conference, companies like Google, Groupon and Ebay talked about adopting Docker. This time, it’s Netflix, ING and Gilt explaining Docker’s role in the shift towards microservices and DevOps.

Docker even gave a technical demonstration with Moby Dock:

From startups to enterprises

Last year’s conference was all about the vendors and the community. This year, it’s all about Docker in enterprises. Now that Docker has won over the entire developer community, it’s next destination is the enterprise. That’s why the platform has launched its first enterprise offering, Docker Hub Enterprise.

Following calls for help from IT companies looking to dockerize their applications, Docker is now looking to the long-term with a enterprise-funded business model, as CEO Ben Golub explained to JAXenter.

dockercon netflix

Netflix’s former head of Cloud, Adrian Cockroft, spoke about Docker and the state of microservices. © Joni Israeli / Docker

One can feel the enthusiasm the attendees share as the conference unfolds and unveils new technologies. At times the conference feels more like a poetry slam or some religious congregation, when the audience breaks into cheers and applause as Solomon Hykes describes details of new features like Docker Swarm.

Docker’s goals for 2015

So where to now? Golub started the conference by outlining the company’s new strategy:

  1. Don’t lose portability, clean interfaces and ecosytem of tools, apps, languages, etc. just b/c go from single to multi-container
  2. Open APIs built with open design and pluggable
  3. Batteries included, but removable
  4. Be layered. Let user decide if use orchestration suite or just a single Docker container format
  5. Support the ecosystem and a variety of different solutions
  6. Ultimately, be guided by what’s best for the user

Docker Hub Enterprise. via

Golub reminds attendees that until recently, Docker users were confronted with a warning about the risks of 0.x versions of Docker. The company’s CEO recognises that “there’s a lot of risk and courage involved with adopt Docker in places like ING.”

Today, the risks associated with containerisation have disappeared and Docker has proved its concept to the developer word.

Having already started on winning over enterprises, now comes the time when Docker must face a growing competition.

Coman Hamilton
Coman was Editor of at S&S Media Group. He has a master's degree in cultural studies and has written and edited content for numerous news, tech and culture websites and magazines, as well as several ad agencies.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments