IBM Adds New Bluemix OpenWhisk Tools for IoT Development

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2016-06-21 Print this article Print
IBM initiatives

Meanwhile, IBM's NPM module provides a JavaScript client library for the OpenWhisk REST APIs. It provides an easy way for developers to call services on the OpenWhisk platform without manually constructing HTTP requests, IBM said. Developers can build apps that integrate with the OpenWhisk directly from Node.js without having to learn the entire RESTful API endpoints for the platform, Hately said.

Gilfix said IBM's OpenWhisk enables a vastly different model than traditional cloud computing models. With traditional cloud computing models, organizations must deploy a VM in the cloud running constantly. Organizations pay for the VM regardless of whether it's using the content in the VM, not to mention the cost of the skills needed to set up the stack, maintain it and run it.

"So now developers can just focus on the high-value code, quickly go and create these microservices and our cloud will scale that for them," Gilfix said. "We've seen a lot of developers look into this programming model, but we took a very open approach to it. The key to this kind of programming model is to have a ton of different events that allow you to hang your coat off of."

OpenWhisk runs on IBM's Bluemix cloud platform and enables developers to deploy their code as Docker containers. With OpenWhisk, developers can begin building with containers on Bluemix immediately, without the hassle of configuring and connecting prerequisite programs and code, Hately noted.

Moreover, in OpenWhisk, IBM created an open model to make it easier for people to write event-driven code on the cloud. IBM also made it one of the first venues to do Swift programming on both the front end and the back end, Gilfix said.

"We see a tremendous opportunity for developer productivity," he said.

Many of the developers using Swift today are client-side developers who aren't experienced full-stack developers. But IBM wants to make them productive in building the back-end logic for their mobile applications on the cloud.

"We think the killer combination is to use OpenWhisk—which is this event-driven, serverless programming model—and Swift, because those developers can upload their code snippets to the cloud, choose when they run and the cloud will take care of the process of scaling it for them," Gilfix said. "That's an incredibly powerful productivity gain.”

Meanwhile, developers reuse the skills they have between front end and back end, developing in one language and one skill set for their end-to-end application, he added.

An IBM spokesperson said with integrated Docker support, IBM's Bluemix draws more than 20,000 new developers each week, creating more than 120,000 apps every month.


Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel