IBM Bluemix – From Idea to Application

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This is a brief summary of the whitepaper IBM Bluemix – From Idea to Application (PDF) by Karim Abousedera.

IBM Bluemix With Bluemix, you can quickly build, manage and run a range of applications—including web, mobile, big data, and new smart devices—on an open-standard, cloud-based platform. It’s free of charge for 30 days and includes many services with free plans, all available with the click on a button in just a few minutes.

This document will demonstrate how straightforward it is to rapidly build an application in a cloud operating environment using Bluemix and its integrated source code management and collaboration tools—all hosted in the cloud. In less than an hour, you will be able to understand and navigate Bluemix, use its DevOps Services, and develop and deploy a basic Bluemix application.

Advantages of Cloud Computing for Developers

After coming up with an idea for an application, developers face a series of obstacles throughout the development lifecycle. These obstacles could even disrupt the lifecycle process itself, consuming much time and wasting resources.

Challenges that today’s developers face and how Bluemix addresses them
Challenges that today’s developers face (left) and how Bluemix addresses them (right)

Before an application could be built, developers used to have to summarize the app’s functional requirements in order to ensure the correct platform was available and running. This platform included the hardware architecture, an operating system and runtime libraries, each with its own specialized administrator to install and configure it, resulting in significant downtime and delay.

Infrastructure-as-a-Service vs. Platform-as-a-Service

The introduction of cloud computing provides new tools and techniques to reduce the time a developer needs to go from idea to application. What used to take weeks or months to be done, may now take only a few days or even hours. The “as a service” model has simplified developers’ workload and facilitated a transformation using the cloud. Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) reduces the effort required to manage the hardware; Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) reduces the effort needed to manage the middleware; Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) gives end users access to business applications hosted and maintained by the vendor.

To summarize, both IaaS and PaaS cloud models simplify the workload of developers by managing complex tasks that are orthogonal to the developers’ goals, thereby freeing up more time for them to create innovative new applications

PaaS Frees Developers from Managing Infrastructure

From the perspective of a developer, a good PaaS offering provides a variety of runtimes and services, which makes the application development lifecycle faster and easier. In other words, when a developer considers using a platform, one of the primary things they look for is whether their favorite programming language or runtime is available. These runtimes are available through PaaS at the click of a button, so a developer can start coding immediately.

One of the most important features of PaaS is that it enables the real-time servicing of data—also referred to as “continuous delivery”. This expression highlights an important element of the development lifecycle, which might include deploying a new coded application on the live server or modifying an existing running application with no downtime. It sums up the benefits for developers, freeing them from managing infrastructure resources and providing more time for writing code.

Overview of the Bluemix Architecture

Bluemix offers three open compute technologies: Cloud Foundry, Docker and OpenStack. As a result, the apps can run using instant runtimes, containers or virtual machines respectively, where you can pick the level of infrastructure for the app’s architectural needs.

It is enhanced with IBM’s services in addition to third-party and community-built services. There are three unique ways to deploy the apps: (1) Bluemix Public or (2) Bluemix Dedicated— powered by IBM SoftLayer 40 data centers around the world or (3) Bluemix local running within your data center.

Want to Learn More?

To continue reading, download IBM Bluemix – From Idea to Application (PDF). It will add more detail to what was covered in the previous sections and explore these additional topics:

  • IBM DevOps Services and development tools
  • Bluemix features
  • Security
  • First steps in using Bluemix (a five-minute tutorial)
  • Building and Modifying your first application

Want to try it for yourself? Download the PDF and start your free 30 day Bluemix trial today!

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