By: David Dilday, Director, Managed Services Delivery

In 2022, AHEAD announced a strategic partnership with the Modern Software Delivery Platform company, Harness, enabling our clients to accelerate and optimize their enterprise cloud and DevOps organizations. During the annual Harness Unscripted event in San Francisco, CA, AHEAD representatives met with Harness leadership at an Executive Briefing prior to the main event to gain a sneak peek at the roadmap and preview the amazing features coming to the platform. Those features were revealed to the public on the main stage, showcasing Harness’ dedication to delivering a world-class developer experience:

Code Repository – “Gitness”

  • Summary: Fully open-source Git platform, designed to address the challenges developers face in traditional software development due to low quality open-source platforms and the inherent complexity involved with managing multiple tools.
  • Key Features:
    • Collaborative code review enforcement to accelerate teamwork
    • Enhanced security to promote secure code management
    • AI-powered semantic search to quickly navigate code for development/debugging
    • Automated CI pipelines to ensure build consistency

Internal Developer Portal

  • Summary: A home for developers to create, manage, and explore software and documentation.
  • Key Features:
    • A centralized location for developers to create and document their code and pipelines
    • Makes onboarding applications to Harness easier than ever before
    • AI-generated documentation capability for pipelines

Infrastructure as Code Management (IaCM)

  • Summary: IaCM helps organizations mitigate risks associated with manual processes through automation and increase efficiency via a simplified and centralized solution.
  • Key Features:
    • Streamlined infrastructure changes via advanced pipeline for IaC automation
    • Automatic drift detection/remediation to ensure change process adherence
    • Risk reduction for misconfigurations and vulnerabilities with open policy agent (OPA)-based infrastructure policies
    • Increased efficiency and error avoidance via pull request process to understand change impact prior to code merge

Software Supply Chain Assurance

  • Summary: Monitor and control open-source software components and third-party artifacts to guarantee software integrity and maintain compliance.
  • Key Features:
    • Software integrity assurance through validation of build source, branch, etc. per SLSA v1.0 specifications
    • User tool flexibility/preference for software bill of materials (SBOM) generation
    • Open-source visibility and control through policy enforcement

Enhancements to “AIDA” (AI Development Assistant)

  • Summary: AI built into the platform to empower developers by reducing toil, resulting in increased creativity, efficiency, and productivity.
  • Key Features:
    • Semantic search to streamline code discovery
    • Expedited Feature Flag onboarding to avoid conventional manual overhead
    • Real-time developer support for swift and precise Harness Developer Hub search
    • Continuous delivery error analysis with intelligent actionable recommendations
    • Generative AI techniques for OPA policy creation
    • Security governance and resilience

Leadership Insights & Takeaways

In addition to the new platform features, Harness Field CTO, Nick Durkin, conducted a fireside chat with Kelsey Hightower (of notable Kubernetes fame), where he shared his experiences and insights on the industry. Kelsey relayed the importance of ensuring that software and process improvements are not just documented and “moved to SharePoint,” but rather, built into platforms so that new developers inherit the knowledge and learnings from previous tenants.

Emily Freeman (AWS Head of Community and bestselling author) then took the stage to inspire development and engineering teams to reject the traditional notion of being just an individual contributor, but rather to embrace the collective talents of the entire team for the goal of creating a truly “Michelin star product.” Freeman explained that Michelin star restaurants are truly a collection of talented individuals, operating in concert as a well-orchestrated team. The result is a Michelin star meal, or in this case, Michelin star engineering and delivery.

These were just some of the exciting announcements from Harness Unscripted 2023. If you missed the conference and are interested in learning more, please contact us. Thank you to Harness for hosting AHEAD, and to all of our amazing clients that joined us at Harness Unscripted 2023!


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