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SODACON 2020: Data Connected conference took place virtually across six time zones on 9th and 10th of December: San Francisco, New York, Tokyo, Beijing, New Delhi, and London. Key takeaways from this conference included SODA’s Open Data Framework for multi-vendor data and storage challenges, updates of projects in incubation, importance of end users’ participation in SODA’s open source community, use cases, and collaboration with Standards organizations.

The conference comprised keynote presentations, project updates with demos, and panel discussions.

Day 1

Steven Tan, VP & CTO Cloud Solution of Storage at Futurewei and SODA Foundation Chair, opened the event with remembering Dan Kohn (1972 – 2020). Dan was formerly Executive Director at Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). He also founded Linux Foundation Public Health (LFPH) to battle COVID-19 through collaboration. Dan was one of the key open source leaders of our time, and had always been a staunch supporter of SODA, providing advice and guidance. 

In his keynote address, Steven explained that when there are multiple vendor-proprietary frameworks in the data management architecture, the result is data silos if the frameworks are not connected. Therein lies the significance of SODA’s Open Data Framework: Open Source, Open Standard, Unified, and Autonomous. 

Steven announced that the Intel DAOS project has recently joined the SODA Incubator. The incubator program provides support for the development, growth and adoption of projects through open source. The YIG project by China Unicom joined the incubator at the launch of SODA Foundation. 

Steven also discussed SODA’s efforts in seeking out other open source projects to promote cross-project collaboration: LinStor, OpenEBS, and Zenko are open source projects by SODA members; Cinder is an OpenStack project; ChubaoFS is a CNCF project; and Curve is an open source project by NetEase. 

Commenting on the importance of serving the needs of end users, Steven highlighted how SODA’s End User Advisory Committee (EUAC) acts as validators to the project vision, allowing end users to share and address real world issues together.  SODA’s EUAC comprises representatives from around the world, including Toyota, Vodafone, China Unicom, Softbank, KPN, and NTT Communications . Also watch out for announcements from SODA Academy in the coming months: the academy will be launching bootcamps, internships, training, certifications, and bounties for developers. 


SODA Foundation now has 26 members since its launch in June, with newest team members, Cloud Computing Innovation Council of India (CCICI) and Guanghua-group.

In his keynote, Anjaneya “Reddy” Chagam, Principal Engineer and Chief SDS Architect at Intel’s Data Center Group and SODA Foundation Governing Board Member, gave an overview of the projects in the SODA Incubator. Reddy explained how each project addresses data management challenges, and how SODA collaborates with each project team by providing a complementary setup to support the integration of each project within the SODA context.

Data plane projects in the SODA Incubator (how SODA looks at the different storage backends):

  • ChubaoFS is a cloud-native storage platform that provides both POSIX-compliant and S3-compliant interfaces in the data plane, providing a highly scalable file system and object storage.
  • Intel DAOS, a new incubation program, provides a highly optimized software-defined scale-out object store that is able to achieve high performance with emerging cloud storage media and can scale to hundreds of nodes within the context of SODA.
  • YIG provides a storage gateway that manages multiple large storage clusters (with thousands of nodes) and provides the object interface for that.
  • Curve is a high-performance scaled-out  distributed block storage system.



Control plane for block projects in the SODA Incubator:

  • LinStor pulls all the storage resources on the storage nodes.
  • Cinder for virtual machines in open stack to plug into different storage backends with over hundred plus drivers and plug them into the SODA Open Data Framework through SODA’s incubation effort.
  • OpenEBS and Zenko for multi-cloud orchestration in managing data seamlessly on-prem and off-prem.

Next on the virtual stage was Yoshiya Eto, Principal Architect at Fujitsu, a Linux Foundation Fellow, and Advisor on SODA Foundation Governing Board. Eto-san shared the importance of open source for business, how end users in an open source community could directly influence feature creations by participating in the ecosystem and providing their requirements, and how this ultimately benefits end users in their business growth. Eto-san discussed the development process and encouraged end users, service operators, service providers, and vendors to join in this collaboration. Join SODA now

Following Eto-san’s presentation, use cases were shared by keynote presenters from Toyota Motor Corporation, China Unicom, Reliance Jio, and Huawei.

Yuji Yazawa, Principal Engineer and Group Manager at Toyota Motor Corporation and SODA Foundation Governing Board Vice-chair, shared a use case example for connected vehicles, highlighting the various essential components in the architecture. He also shared the pain points and outlined what he anticipated next in this project collaboration with SODA.


Zhong Xin, CTO at China Unicom Cloud Data Company and SODA Foundation Governing Board Treasurer, shared the landscape for cloud and storage in China. He provided an overview of YIG architecture. Using a use case example in multi-region deployment, he highlighted the challenges in data and storage, and the opportunities for collaboration with SODA.


Dr. Zia Saquib, Senior Vice President of Technology Innovation & Development at Reliance Jio, walked through the big video data evolution and growth in retail, agriculture, healthcare and autonomous vehicles. He gave examples of data explosion in various industries and how his team is developing a framework for Video Analytics using open source and academic collaboration. He offered perspectives on how SODA could support in solving business problems now and in the long term.

Ryan Lian, Director, Product Management of Data Storage Domain of IT Product Line at Huawei, outlined three key challenges in storage management: low resource utilization, inefficient management, and multi-cloud convergence. He provided three case studies in telecommunications, manufacturing, and banking.


Next, Ashit Kumar, Lead Architect of Huawei Technologies and SODA Foundation Projects Maintainer, provided SODA Open Data Framework Updates with three team members: Najmudheen CT, Architect of Huawei Technologies; Noel McLoughlin, SRE of GBE Technologies; and Saurabh Gupta of Click2Cloud. 


Ashit introduced the features of SODA API, Controller, Dock, and multi-cloud; Naju gave an overview of the key features of SODA NBP and delfin; Noel walked us through SODA Experience (Installer); Saurabh discussed use cases and how adopters are connecting data with SODA projects. The team closed the presentation with a roadmap of SODA.



Day 1 Slides

View Day1 Video Playlist

Day 2

The second day of SODACON 2020: Data Connected conference focused on use cases, SODA’s collaboration with Standards organizations, and SODA Roadmap.

Steven Tan, VP & CTO Cloud Solution of Storage at Futurewei and SODA Foundation Chair, started the second day of the conference with key trends for Data/Storage along with AI, Edge, Cloud and 5G. He shared insights on how end users are looking at business trends and demands, how Data/Storage technologies are getting shaped, and SODA Foundation’s role in that. Steven showed how the Open Data Framework is utilized in the Services For Connected Car Platform.


Keynote speaker, Xion Lai, General Manager of Cloud Platform R&D Department at China Construction Bank Fintech, gave an overview of China Construction Bank (CCB) and CCB Fintech. He shared CCB’S cloud native platform and its cloud database platform that is based on Kubernetes and SODA. He highlighted the achievements of the platform and detailed how SODA can help further.


Kei Kusunoki, Manager of Innovation Center at NTT Communications and SODA Member Governing Board TOC Co-chair, shared a service provider use case. He outlined the pain points in the current storage orchestration: high development costs for the original controllers, and the fragmented controllers with original APIs. Kusunoki-san explained that with SODA ready storage, there is no need for controller development, data management is made easy, and the Open Source API can be used by the customers’ apps.


Jin Deng, Storage Service Architect of Cloud Capability Center at China Mobile, introduced China Mobile’s cloud storage and its requirements in multi-cloud management. He gave an overview of the company’s BigCloud infrastructure and platform, before sharing insight of the problems and solutions in object storage and block/file. He outlined how SODA can help in backup and object storage.


Yousheng Wang, Director of Open Source Developer Dept. at Huawei, discussed the challenges and coordination efforts on data management, honing in on the redesign that is necessary in data management: data analysis/AI, data distribution and scalability, and data interoperability. He covered the challenges in hybrid data management across Edge, Core and Cloud, and how SODA can help in providing a unified API, platform and reference framework for multiple vendors.


Since its launch, SODA Foundation has been collaborating closely with Standards organizations such as  SNIA, CNCF, and IEEE. Richelle Ahlvers, Board Advisor of SNIA (Storage Networking Industry Association), talked about the keys to partnership in standards development: leverage the open communities, identify use cases, and partner with the groups’ standards committees. These ensure the required functionality is available and drive that functionality into the underlying implementation. SODA works with SNIA to implement specifications that have been defined such as SNIA Swordfish specifications for storage services and CSI for container storage interface.


Cheryl Hung, VP of Ecosystem at CNCF, spoke about the End User Technology Radar trends and data that is shared with the industry and open source communities. Chengappa M R, Senior Member at IEEE, emphasized the importance of open standards and collaboration in the industrial ecosystem. Open source benefits consumers and suppliers, and IEEE is actively seeking out open source collaboration with organizations like SODA.

SODA also works with regional institutions such as China Electronics Standardization Institute (CESI) and Cloud Computing Innovation Council of India (CCICI) to ensure the framework meets the requirements of each country or region. Prakash Ramachandran, Member (Advisory) at CCICI shared his views where SODA needs to focus on Edge, followed by Liyun Yang, Director of the Research Office at CESI, who presented the Mulan Open Source Community and gave an overview on China’s open source process.

In addition to partnering with Standards organizations, SODA also sources feedback from industry organizations such as Japan Data Storage Foundation (JDSF). Kinya Saito, Expert Engineer at Fujitsu and JDSF Board Member, was invited to give an overview of the foundation and its activities.

The two-day conference closed with a peek at the SODA Roadmap and the next release by Sanil Kumar D, Chief Architect of Huawei Technologies India Pvt Ltd and SODA TOC AWG Lead, and Kiran Mova, Chief Architect of MayaData and SODA TOC AWG. Open Source allows SODA to have open design and development. The community developers have been working and publishing regular software releases. The next release is Hawaii featuring performance anomaly detection, performance visualization, enhanced file shares for the different cloud services and more. The source code is available on GitHub. Kiran reiterated SODA’s focus on use cases and building the foundation to plug in what vendors have.

Day 2 Slides

View Day2 Video Playlist

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