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DevNet Code Exchange: Making Developers Lives Easier, a Cisco Champion Radio Podcast (S5|Ep.25)


October 16, 2018 - 0 Comments

This episode of Cisco Champion Radio season five, episode 25, focuses on DevNet Code Exchange. Our guest on the show is Casey Bleeker from DevNet. Jeff Levensailor and Paul Giblin are our Cisco Champion hosts.

What is Code Exchange?

According to Casey Bleeker, Code Exchange arose out of a need to create a place to help people find resources and exchange value. Whether it’s sample code for those just getting started or pre-built projects and resources.

Cisco DevNet has a huge community of people who are creating a ton of valuable content that others in the community can use. And so the exchange concept is where developers, Cisco customers and partners, and really the Cisco product units as well, can all exchange code with one another. Cisco Code Exchange specifically solves the problem of finding code while at the same time, allowing people to share their projects and code with a wider audience.

Submitting to Code Exchange

Developers can submit their code at https://developer.cisco.com/codeexchange.  It’s as simple as providing a URL link to your code repository. DevNet then just asks for a couple tags to classify and help users understand what that project is about, such as if it’s an IOT or data center application.

Code Exchange approval process

Code Exchange only publishes code from public repositories to ensure submissions are authorized. They apply some quality control to confirm that code samples include a number of core components. If that sounds too hard don’t worry, code doesn’t have to super-complex, Casey explained that there is a lot of value in something as simple as boilerplate code, and he says it doesn’t even have to be a fully-functioning project.

Users rate the code as well. DevNet validates how often something is used by how many repository stars it has or how many commits it has; this helps them sort for quality submissions organically. Lastly, DevNet puts all code through a review process before its published. And that’s it. Code Exchange also includes a lot of internally developed code and projects created by Cisco SE’s and others.

The business case

Cisco DevNet is starting to ask business owners what they want to see in their software-defined networks, what they want to see programmed in terms of business logic and how that would interact with their networks. They are aggregating those ideas and needs and sharing them with their developer community and connecting and creating a developer ecosystem. And Casey says, we’ll see more of that, “we certainly want users to be able to submit their own requests as well as things that they want to see created by the community.”

Cisco sees a lot of business being driven by helping people find and build code. Whether it’s consumable blocks of code or sample projects, when someone builds these unique applications and puts them in the Code or Ecosystem Exchange it helps the entire global base of Cisco users. And that’s the goal. Cisco wants its users to find these solutions, and to use and customize them to gain a unique value proposition, and often times, some competitive differentiation.

For those that aren’t developers, perhaps business users looking at Code Exchange for things like sample code, a code template, or maybe a boiler-plate application, DevNet has a ton of tutorials and sample code to help you get started.

What coding languages are most prominent in Code Exchange

Code Exchange houses code found across various platforms and allows you to sort by code or coding language. For example, if you’re familiar with JavaScript, and want to find a collaboration application, you can do that.

Python and JavaScript are the most consumed languages within Code Exchange. Between the two, there are 11 pages of sample applications across the exchange. But if you look at DNA Center, the business entity (BE) has also created some sample applications that allow you to build out Android and iOS applications. There are definitely a lot of different languages and depending on what you’re most comfortable with, you should be able to sort through and find what you’re looking for.

Ecosystem Exchange

Cisco DevNet gets lots of solutions from third party sources that are already baked. These solutions are offered in what DevNet calls the Ecosystem Exchange. This is where the shrink-wrapped products live, pre-built and ready-made for specific functions. Cisco partners are the main contributors to the Ecosystem Exchange and some of these partner developed applications ultimately end up in the Cisco catalog, making it easier and more cost-effective for customers to procure and deploy solutions.

Listen to the podcast to get the full story from Casey, Paul, and Jeff.

Get the Podcast

  • Listen to this episode in SoundCloud
  • SUBSCRIBE on iTunes and listen to all episodes of Season 5
  • Listen to Seasons 1-4 in iTunes

Cisco Champion Hosts

  • Jeff Levensailor (@levensailor), Cisco Champion member and Sr Collaboration Engineer
  • Paul Giblin (@dreamlessod), Cisco Champion member and Sr. Solutions Architect

Cisco Guests

Moderator

  • Brett Shore (@brettshore), Cisco Champion Program Management

Podcast Discussion Topics

  • What is Code Exchange
  • How Code Exchange is different from Ecosystem Exchange and Solutions Plus
  • How to submit code to Code Exchange and what the approval process is
  • What core components DevNet looks for in code submissions
  • What level of coding experience you need
  • What technologies have the greatest code samples
  • What is the language distribution inside DevNet Code Exchange
  • How Code Exchange is driving business value
  • What Ansible and Puppet are doing on Code Exchange
  • How data scientists are using Code Exchange

Listen in and provide us feedback, we would love to hear from you!


Cisco Champions are an elite group of technical experts who are passionate about IT and enjoy sharing their knowledge, expertise, and thoughts across the social web and with Cisco. The program has been running for over five years and has earned two industry awards as an industry best practice. Learn more about the program at http://cs.co/ciscochampionprogram.



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