All blog posts Miscellaneous 4 mins read

Review of our Google Cloud Zürich Meetup #5

Thomas Hug
Written by
Thomas Hug
September 1, 2020
Share this post

The Google Cloud Meetup #5 took place on 25 August 2020 in Zürich City in the cafeteria of nine. Since the beginning of the year, we have been recording all our Meetups and publishing them on our YouTube Channel. Corona made it necessary to adapt Meetups and hold them online. Starting with this Meetup, we are combining the online experience (via Google Meet) together with the benefits of on-site events such as networking and having pizza and beer together! Thanks to Google for sponsoring pizza and beer!

Thomas Hug, Founder of nine introduces the speakers Thilo Rossa of Parashift and Cyrill Troxler of Nine Internet Solutions AG.

Addressing the challenges in Document Capture with a Cloud-first and Machine Learning approach 

Contrary to popular belief, document processing is anything but solved. And the need for it to be solved is growing as companies are desperate to find ways to reduce costs, increase productivity, process continuity and system efficiency.

In his talk, Thilo Rossa gave insights into the existing challenges in Document Capture and Parashift’s solution approach to address these. Two major aspects of the strategy to actually bring more autonomy into the process at scale are the fundamentally global and highly scalable Google Cloud infrastructure as well as a versatile machine learning platform, capable of coping with the complexity of real-world documents.

The underlying model training architecture consists of five parts. Namely, a backend based on the Google Cloud Platform and Google Cloud SQL, the persistent Google Cloud Storage and AI Platform, the Google Container Registry and DaemonSets along with prediction pods. Both the backend as well as prediction engine are two Kubernetes clusters, each consisting of various nodes and therefore offering great flexibility in terms of organizing, deploying and auto-scaling container applications.

Crossing the Kubernetes Control Plane

Wouldn’t it be great if developers could use the same tools for deploying applications and provisioning supporting infrastructure like databases? In Cyrill Troxler’s talk, he explains this problem and looks at some existing solutions that could improve the situation.

A lot of companies on Google Cloud use tools like Terraform to provision this kind of infrastructure. But all of these tools introduce new workflows that are cumbersome to integrate into existing development workflows. Luckily, if you are using Kubernetes to deploy your applications there are a number of new tools that tackle this problem. We take a look at two of these tools: Config Connector, which is a service from Google that can be enabled as an addon for GKE and Crossplane, which is an Open Source project that recently got accepted into the CNCF sandbox. The talk goes a bit deeper in what makes Crossplane stand out from other tools and shows a live demo of provisioning some infrastructure with it using the Kubernetes control plane.

Further outlook with the new online experience

Our next Google Cloud Meetup is planned for November 10, 2020 17:45 in Zürich City at Stauffacher (nine offices, Badenerstrasse 47). Join us on-site with pizza & beer by Google or remote through Google Meet in your browser!

If you have an interesting project running on Google Cloud that you want to show or if you have anything else to talk about, please contact us! We also very much appreciate suggestions for topics and possible speakers, by either meet-up-message, by using the contact form on our website, or via email to one of your contacts here at nine. We would like to keep things exciting. We look forward to seeing you again!