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Cloud Unplugged

Technology Podcasts

Welcome to The Cloud Unplugged Podcast, hosted by Jon Shanks (CEO) and Jay Keshur (COO). The two co-founded software company Appvia, have backgrounds in engineering and platform development, with years of experience using Kubernetes. Here they take a light-hearted look at cloud engineering under the lens of platform teams. Discussing how developers, platform engineers, and businesses can leverage cloud-native software development practices successfully.


United Kingdom


Welcome to The Cloud Unplugged Podcast, hosted by Jon Shanks (CEO) and Jay Keshur (COO). The two co-founded software company Appvia, have backgrounds in engineering and platform development, with years of experience using Kubernetes. Here they take a light-hearted look at cloud engineering under the lens of platform teams. Discussing how developers, platform engineers, and businesses can leverage cloud-native software development practices successfully.




Episode 34 | Product vs. Program, what's the difference and do you really need them?

Jon and Jay sit down to discuss what a program is, what a product is and what the difference between the two is. Are they company-specific and completely unrelated, or, are they reliant on each other? This light-hearted episode covers the ins and outs of products and programs.


Episode 33 | The importance of consistency in cloud infrastructure: Cloud Landing Zones

Jon and Jay sit down to discuss the importance of consistency when structuring cloud setups.


Episode 32 | Rafe Colburn, Depop (owned by Etsy). Pitfalls of measuring engineering productivity.

Jon and Rafe sit down to discuss how things changed for Depop, after the Etsy acquisition, what the CPTO role comprises and when makes sense for an organisation to have one. They also cover how to avoid the pitfalls of measuring engineering productivity.


Episode 31 | Dean Bryen, CTO of Cloud UBS maintaining innovation with new technologies

Dean and Jon discuss Cloud adoption and the trials and tribulations of implementing new technologies while maintaining best practices and not hindering innovation! Dean Linkedin:


Episode 30 | Idriss Selhoum, Marks & Spencer's cloud adoption journey

Jon and Idriss sit down to discuss Marks and Spencer's cloud adoption journey, from hosting on-prem to Microsoft Azure. Landing zones and developer self-service were critical to the transformation and modernisation of Marks and Spencer's datacentre exit.


Episode 29 | David Heinemeier Hansson, 37 Signals & Ruby on Rails. Rent vs buy: do cloud providers really save companies money?

David Heinemeier Hansson, is a Danish programmer, entrepreneur, and author, best known as the creator of web development framework, Ruby on Rails. Co-founder and CTO at Basecamp, a web-based project management tool, David is also recognised for his strong opinions on software development, business practices, and digital privacy. A vocal advocate for sustainable work practices, he has co-authored several books, including "Rework" and "Remote: Office Not Required", challenging traditional notions of the workplace. In this episode of Cloud Unplugged, David shares his opinion on cloud hosting vs. on-prem, or, as he describes it, rent vs buy. David Linkedin:


Episode 28 | Matthew Skelton, Team Topologies, the complexities of managing team in the modern workplace

In this episode of Cloud Unplugged, Jon and author Matthew Skelton discuss the book Team Topologies and the complexities of team management in the modern workplace. Matthew Linkedin:


Episode 27 | What is Culture in the Modern Workplace?

Jon and Jay discuss the challenges involved in creating and maintaining culture in the modern workplace.


Episode 26 | Viktor Farcic, Upbound. Platform Engineering, Role Evolution and Optimisation

In this episode of Cloud Unplugged, Jon and Viktor discuss how the role and responsibilities of a platform engineer have developed over time. Viktor Linkedin:


Episode 25 | Product Manager vs. Product Owner, is there a difference and do you need one?

In this episode of the Cloud Unplugged podcast, Jon Shanks and Jay Keshur share their thoughts on product management and delivery management. They discuss how these roles contribute to efficient product development and when they become crucial, the challenges and importance of having a clear vision for your product, and how to settle the potential conflicts between these roles.


Episode 24 | Nicholas Chang & Steve Nicholl, Kainos. Navigating Cloud Adoption

In this episode of The Cloud Unplugged Podcast, Nicholas Chang, and Steve Nicholl, from Kainos, join Jon to share insights on the challenges of navigating cloud adoption framework, platform engineering, and the significance of collaboration in the industry. They cover keeping up with the rapidly evolving cloud technologies through social networking, choosing the right platform and service for creating applications, and giving autonomy to developers while implementing the necessary guardrails to prevent damage. Nicholas Linkedin: Steve Linkedin:


Episode 23 | Chris Stura, PwC UK. Platform Engineering & Business Success

Jon sits down with Chris Stura, Director of Financial Services at PwC. Together, Jon and Chris delve into the realm of cloud computing and software development, highlighting the challenges that businesses in the technology sector face. Gain valuable insights on leveraging technology for business success and the crucial role of integrating technology into effective business strategies. Chris Linkedin:


Episode 22 | Colin Humphreys, Syntasso. Anti-Patterns Exposed: Building Platforms the Right Way

In this episode of Cloud Unplugged, Jon sits down with Colin Humphreys, CEO & Co-Founder of Syntasso. The two tackle the confusing jargon prevalent in the cloud industry and its impact on effective communication, they delve into the significance of product management and design as crucial elements of platform engineering, and they relive the challenging times when Dev and Ops used to be separate entities. Colin Linkedin:


Episode 21 | Haseeb Budhani, Rafay Systems. Bridging the Gap: Development and Developer Experience

In this episode of Cloud Unplugged, host Jon is joined by Haseeb Budhani, the Co-founder and CEO of Rafay Systems. Rafay Systems is at the forefront of delivering cloud-native Kubernetes management and operation solutions to corporations and managed services. Jon and Haseeb explore the thought-provoking topic of build vs. buy in the platform engineering world, shedding light on the advantages and challenges associated with this approach. Haseeb Linkedin:


Episode 20 | Richard Simon, T-Systems. Every Cloud Migration Has a Silver Lining

Jay is joined by Richard Simon, CTO at T-Systems, a business that drives digital transformation for companies by offering integrated end-to-end IT solutions. Jay and Richard discuss the four stages of cloud migration, how to establish a Cloud Centre of Excellence, what polycloud is, and why you need more than a hammer to build a house. Richard Linkedin:


Episode 19 | Charles Humble, Container Solutions. Technical Writing in the Cloud Era

In this episode, Jay is accompanied by Charles Humble, the Editor-in-Chief at Container Solutions, a cloud native consultancy. Having the benefit of being a writer in such a technical field, Charles brings a fascinating perspective to cloud discussion. Together, Jay and Charles discuss working remotely in the cloud space, why some companies fail at cloud adoption, and draw parallels between programming and writing. Finally, they wrapped up their discussion by exploring what part AI shall play in the future of technical writing. Charles Linkedin:


Episode 18 | Kasper von Grünberg, Humanitec. What it Means to be a Platform Engineer

This time on Cloud Unplugged, hosts Jon and Jay are joined by Kaspar von Grünberg, the Founder and CEO of Humanitec. Working as a platform orchestrator, Humanitec is a product that enables companies to build internal developer platforms. In the episode, Jon, Jay and Kaspar discuss what it means to be a platform engineer, if the industry has a measure of what ‘good’ looks like, and whether having strong opinions of a platform is a positive or negative thing. Kaspar Linkedin:


Episode 17 | Optimal Platform Engineering Team Sizes

In this episode, Jon and Jay discuss the ideal sizes for platform engineering teams. During the course of their conversation, the pair talk through ways to optimise team size to ensure business efficiency, what an ideal platform team size ratio would be, why some platform teams have become bloated, and hypothesise about the concept of a ‘zero-person’ company.


Episode 16 | Enabling Developer Self-Service with Existing Technologies

In this episode, Jon and Jay explain how platform engineers can enable developer self-service with existing technologies. They touch on the evolution of self-service, and how cloud technology has made it easier to do well.


Episode 15 | The State of DevOps Report 2023

Jon and Jay analyse the findings of Puppet’s recent report on the state of DevOps and platform engineering. The pair discuss what they thought was lacking from the report, the difference between platform teams and platform engineering teams, and Jon finds an excuse to have a rant about the term 'cognitive load'.