Southwest needs a lift-and-shift to the multi-cloud, then refactor.

Most of us have heard about the crisis Southwest Airlines had over the Holidays. Most articles cite “problems related to legacy systems…” and “outdated scheduling software called SkySolver.” And, of course, there will be a huge financial impact as they try to make everything right with their customer base.

Most likely, the CEO, CFO, COO, CIO, and CTO of Southwest are receiving many calls and emails from vendors offering to “Let us fix it. We will convert everything to be cloud native…” This path sounds like the old saying, “No one ever got fired for buying IBM…” Southwest has a stated multi-cloud strategy, but legacy applications like SkySolver were obviously not priority cloud-native candidates. Though there will be pressure from investors, the industry, and the press to convert legacy applications like SkySolver to cloud-native, I would not initially recommend this approach.

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How to “Float” on the Multi-Cloud.

There is a lot of talk about “multi-cloud,” but trying to achieve that level of cloud diversity might be challenging for many organizations. If you are starting out in the cloud, instead of building cloud-specific expertise across multiple cloud providers, try to “float” across multiple clouds as much as possible. Here is how.

First off, “What is Multi-cloud?”

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