Meet- up: Reduce complexity and achieve ‘simplicity’


On the 28th of May we will dive into the complexity of networks. Can you handle your network now hybrid-, multi cloud environments and environments such as IBM Cloud or even Salesforce come into play?

These days companies no longer rely on on-premise data centers to run their applications and workloads. Hybrid- and (multi)cloud environments such as AWS, Azure and Google Cloud are more common. On top of that, organizations are adding new environments including IBM Cloud or Salesforce to the mix. We call this the ‘scale out-era’.

Can you handle these changes with your existing network? Isn’t this ‘scale-out’ or step to (multi)cloud environments far too complex? How can you reduce this complexity and achieve ‘simplicity’ in order to better adapt to these diverse cloud environments? And how can you prevent the network becoming a bottleneck for your organization?

How to make the network part of your cloud strategy?
During this meet-up we will introduce a 5-step plan to achieve this ‘simplicity’ and cover subjects such as:

  • Cloud creates other traffic flows, how does this affect your network topology?
  • Redundancy and cloud: what do you have to take into account?
  • Advantages and disadvantages of Direct Connect and Express Route connections.
  • How to achieve an open and transparent underlay?
  • Insight as well as end-to-end management by automation and orchestration.
  • Security in all layers (incl.  public cloud environments).
  • The added value of SD-WAN.
Melchior Aelmans

Speaker 1
Melchior Aelmans 
Senior System Engineer – Juniper Networks

Melchior will share a 5-step plan to achieve ‘simplicity’ in a complex (multi)cloud environment. He will talk about creating open and transparent underlays, end-to-end management and insight by automation and orchestration and security.

Melchior Aelmans works as a Senior System Engineer at Juniper Networks and is technically responsible for large enterprise and service provider customers in EMEA. As Lead, he focuses on SDN and NFV solutions, in particular on linking business and technology. His drive is to solve business problems with technology wherever possible.

Melchior has over ten years of experience in service provider networking. Prior to joining Juniper Networks, he held various post and pre-sales roles at major service providers and data center clients like Liberty Global, eBay and Priority Telecom.

Frans ter Borg

Speaker 2
Frans ter Borg 
Founder – Quanza Engineering

For a cloud architect this may sound familiar: you just carried out a perfect migration to the cloud, and suddenly your network turns out to be a bottleneck. Frans ter Borg will share his insights and will also tell you how to use your network optimally and incorporate it in your cloud strategy.

Frans ter Borg is the founder and CEO of Quanza Engineering, a leading company for Design, Build and Operate of innovative IT- and cloud infrastructures. Frans has over 20 years of deep and broad experience in IT infrastructures of organisations with a 24×7 mission critical IT-environment. His specialties are IP and optical networks, datacenters, network security, application delivery and cloud management and orchestration. In addition to his general management role he is responsible for innovation, strategy and product development. Frans is a boardmember of ISPConnect and of Digital Infrastructure Netherlands (DINL) and the chairman of the Cloud IT Academy.

Bart M. Veldhuis

Bart Veldhuis
Co-founder – Cloud Architect Alliance

Bart Veldhuis is a seasoned cloud architect with over 15 years of infrastructure architecting experience. He is the co-founder of the Cloud Architect Alliance.

Bart is a serial entrepreneur and started the first VMware based cloud provider in the BeneLux. Bart founded the vendor independent consultancy firm Weolcan to help organizations bring tangible results from their cloud strategy. Bart will be the moderator during the meet-up on the 28th of May.


Quanza Engineering B.V.
Willem Fenengastraat 7
1096BL, Amsterdam

16:00h – Registration
16:30h – Melchior Aelmans (Juniper Networks)
17:00h – Frans ter Borg (Quanza Engineering)
17:30h – Drinks

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Cloud Architect en Cloud Security Architect awards uitgereikt


Amsterdam, 1 februari 2019 – Henk de Ruiter, Cloud Architect bij Ahold-Delhaize en Johannes Vermeulen, Enterprise Security Architect, DXC Technology zijn gisteravond tijdens een award diner uitgeroepen tot respectievelijk Cloud Architect of the Year en Cloud Security Architect of the Year. De uitreiking vond plaats tijdens de jaarlijkse awards show van de Cloud Architect Alliance (CAA). De juryleden roemden beide winnaars om hun hun kennis van cloud(security) en hun vermogen om organisaties te helpen op een veilige en efficiënte manier gebruik te maken van clouddiensten. Beide winnaars hebben aangetoond over de benodigde vaardigheden te beschikken om op verschillende niveaus in de organisatie overtuigend te kunnen zijn en de complexe materie op een eenvoudige manier te kunnen uitleggen. Beide winnaars krijgen een cheque ter waarde van € 2500,- van Global Knowledge.

De award uitreiking was gekoppeld aan een inhoudelijke avond voor de community van de CAA over high performing cloud architects. De CAA organiseert 4 kwalitatieve inhoudelijke events per jaar, waar iedere keer een thema dat relevant is voor cloud architects centraal staat.

De meerwaarde van deze avonden voor de community heeft zich ruimschoots bewezen, stelt Melchior Aelmans, Senior Systems Engineer bij Juniper Networks: “Automatisering is de sleutel om multicloud optimaal te laten functioneren als een dynamische, onzichtbare infrastructuur met een overkoepelende en alles-integrerende orkestratielaag. De kennis en vaardigheden van een cloudarchitect zijn vereist om dit proces te vereenvoudigen. Onze partner, Quanza Engineering, heeft de expertise om multicloud echt waardevol te maken voor onze klanten. Deze Awards dienen als waardering en inspiratiebron voor anderen om verder te bouwen op hun cloudstrategie.” Adam van de Putte, Marketing & Sales Manager van managed service provider voor IT-infrastructuren Quanza Engineering, vult aan: “Vooruit komen, ontwikkelen en innoveren, dat kan alleen maar als je kennis deelt met en haalt bij je vakgenoten. Daar geloven wij bij Quanza heilig in. De CAA is bij uitstek een platform waar specialisten bij elkaar komen om precies dat te doen.”

De concurrentie voor beide titels was groot. Sinds oktober 2018 was het mogelijk voor vakgenoten en anderen om cloud architecten te nomineren. Na een stortvloed van nominaties selecteerde de jury in beide categorieën vijf finalisten. Er werd onder andere beoordeeld op technische kennis, het vermogen om organisaties te overtuigen van de voordelen en mogelijkheden van de cloud en hun bijdrage aan de wereldwijde community van cloud architecten. Na een strenge selectie werd de top drie bekend gemaakt en uiteindelijk op de avond zelf de winnaars.

Bart M. Veldhuis en Freek Beemster, oprichters van de Cloud Architect Alliance, vertelden tijdens de avond hoe de jury te werk is gegaan. “Op basis van de nominaties hebben we iedere genomineerde uitgenodigd om een schriftelijke pitch in te dienen. Deze zijn beoordeeld, waarna in iedere categorie de 5 overgebleven kandidaten het vuur aan de schenen is gelegd. Daarnaast hebben we ook een referentie geïnterviewd. Uiteindelijk werd per categorie uit de beste 3 de winnaar gekozen. Je zou kunnen zeggen dat je nog makkelijk door de gemiddelde sollicitatieprocedure komt dan dat je cloud architect of the year wordt.”

De uitreiking van de awards vond voor de tweede keer plaats en zal ook volgend jaar weer plaatsvinden.

Cloud Architect of the Year 2018


Erik Janssens is the Cloud Architect of the Year winner of last year (2018). Besides the title of best Cloud Architect of the Year he won a Global Knowledge cheque worth 2500 euro for a training of his choice.

What is, according to you, a good Cloud Architect?

“A cloud architect should have technical knowledge of different cloud providers but also should have knowledge on security, compliance and different cost models.”

How was it for you to win the Cloud Architect of the Year title?
“I really enjoyed the election and I think this is a really good initiative which is also broadly recognized by the community.

Career history:
Erik started his career as a software developer .NET and Java in 2003. He worked among other things for Philips in the IT infrastructure domain and as an expert in the Microsoft stack. He joined NXP in October 2014.

Serverless Architectures: 3 key trends by IBM


For IBM, supporting the Serverless Architectures event of the Cloud Architect Alliance, was a logical occasion. Not only does it have its own serverless proposition, but, fueled by the legendary mantra Think, ‘Big Blue’ is also keen to learn something new everyday.

Henk Waanders, Technical Enablement Specialist at IBM: “At IBM, we think ’serverless’ is an important direction to take, as we are on par with the likes of AWS and Azure”, he said in this blog.

The IBM Cloud Functions platform was developed as a polyglot Function-as-a-Service programming platform within IBM and then donated to the open source community as Apache OpenWhisk.

Waanders saw three main advantages of serverless architectures really stand out:

Cost savings
With being serverless, you only use the compute power when you need it. “We saw savings up to 10 percent from the original sum. So the small overhead to set up a serverless architecture is worth it.”

“Serverless is easy to realize because every request has its own instance. The old way: servers are created with a certain number of people logging on in mind. That’s how they get sized. Now, you only have to size for one person, and put them next to each other. So a serverless infrastructure is massively scalable.”

“But”, Waanders continues, “you must always keep in mind how fast you can enable this. For instance: what kind of rate limit does your provider have?”

Ease of integration
“Serverless computing also is a great match with microservices”, said Waanders. “You can easily integrate someone else’s function or new functions. Eventually we will move towards ‘infrastructure as a code’.”

IBM Netherlands is supporting the exploration of the serverless topic even more. It will be organizing a meetup about ‘serverless’ themselves, at the beginning of next year. Contact Henk Waanders to stay up to date!

Serverless Architectures: hope or hype?


The 12th edition of the Cloud Architect Alliance event focused on Serverless Architectures. More than 80 IT professionals tried to answer the question that keeps coming back: can we really live without servers?

The obvious answer: no, as you still need servers to be ’serverless’. They’re there, but handled by a service provider. The real question of course was: is it useful in any way, or is it just another trend?

Bart Veldhuis, co-founder of the Cloud Architect Alliance, started the network event as usual, with a word of thanks – to sponsors IBM and NetApp. Both companies proved to be a logical and valuable addition to this edition. As a tech giant, IBM is of course also involved in serverless services. (At the time of writing, after the event, IBM acquired Red Hat, meaning it gained access to its serverless tool OpenShift Cloud Functions). NetApp recently acquired StackPointCloud and its container technology, thus allowing it to focus on that proposition as well.

Benefits versus risks
When Sander Nagtegaal (now CEO at coined that he had been deploying a serverless startup in 2015 (and blogged about it), commenters on HackerNews went crazy. Unlike the mostly negative comments then, Nagtegaal now proved how well a serverless setup has worked for him. “When you work serverless it’s super cheap to start, you have zero maintenance and scaling is just part of the stack. I just wouldn’t recommend it in an enterprise environment”, he said.

Serverless Architectures
A statement which exactly proved Henri Koppen’s statement, earlier that evening. The CTO of Arda Online told “serverless in the right use case is of very cheap operational cost, cheaper than anything else.” The main business driver even being the same as that one of ’the cloud’: “it has the perfect alignment between cost and usage, plus the ability to scale.”

Not everything was positive though – both speakers quickly addressed the obvious concerns about the possibility of a vendor lock-in. How to cope with this risk? “Although there are some open source startups that try to fight it, eventually you’ll get vendor lock-in somewhere”, was the response of Yvo van Doorn, Mission Critical Engineer at Schuberg Philis.

He later entered the stage together with Simon Heerschap, Senior Software Architect & Team Lead development at Mirabeau – for an expert panel where the eager audience could just ask about anything and both experts could share their vision on recent developments and talk about what’s next in IT.

The business of serverless architectures
According to Van Doorn and Heerschap, the biggest problem serverless really solves is one of efficiency. “An application gets called only when it needs to get called.” So you pay for the load only instead of buying, managing and configuring a dedicated infrastructure.

So again, a financial benefit was addressed. That paved the way to discuss the impact of such benefits on the position of cloud providers. If (or when?) ’serverless’ is widely adopted, what does that mean for the pricing of cloud providers? According to Van Doorn, it means, for starters, they won’t raise their prices. Heerschap thinks they need to rethink their business model to keep up: “The key for cloud providers is to make money with other services.”

One question and its answer got the whole audience laughing: “In a multicloud setup, if whole AWS fails, Azure rolls back to Windows XP and Google is banned, would you try $300,- of free credits in the Oracle cloud, or just run?” Both experts answered this PDQ, so you can guess the outcome.

For organizers Bart Veldhuis and Freek Beemster the event turned out successful. “This theme has opened many people’s eyes. Especially the simplicity and low costs of serverless architectures emerged this evening. Serverless is not just another buzzword, it is happening. Although the concept is still quite abstract, every noOps development is important for us to highlight at these events”, said Veldhuis.

Cloud Architect AllianceFor Arnout Boer, Solutions Engineer at NetApp, the impact of serverless on the cloud bill proved to be his personal eye-opener. He also addressed the role of container technology in serverless architectures: “It’s one of the many ways to deploy ’serverless’ more easily”, he told the Cloud Architect Alliance. This was demonstrated earlier this evening by Cyle Riggs, Senior Software Engineer at Container Solutions, who created a serverless platform with Docker in less than 100 lines of code, live on stage. “With container technology, like StackPointCloud, you can easily switch between clouds. Which means a more flexible deployment model – and being less cloud dependent. So we already have our cloud exit strategy”, Boer told us.

Henk Waanders, Technical Enablement Specialist at IBM, particularly enjoyed the topic of this edition. “At IBM, we think ’serverless’ is an important direction to take, as we are on par with the likes of AWS and Azure.” He also praised the overall level of the event: “I was impressed by the expert session. That really showed in-depth analysis. Also, there was enough attention for the practical side of serverless. The overall level, from speakers to audience, was just phenomenal.”