The CNCF TOC has defined cloud native as:
Cloud native technologies empower organizations to build and run scalable applications in modern, dynamic environments such as public, private, and hybrid clouds. Containers, service meshes, microservices, immutable infrastructure, and declarative APIs exemplify this approach.
These techniques enable loosely coupled systems that are resilient, manageable, and observable. Combined with robust automation, they allow engineers to make high-impact changes frequently and predictably with minimal toil.
The Cloud Native Computing Foundation seeks to drive adoption of this paradigm by fostering and sustaining an ecosystem of open source, vendor-neutral projects. We democratize state-of-the-art patterns to make these innovations accessible for everyone.
Companies are realizing that they need to be a software company, even if they are not in the software business. For example, Airbnb is revolutionizing the hospitality industry and more traditional hotels are struggling to compete. Cloud native allows IT and software to move faster. Adopting cloud native technologies and practices enables companies to create software in-house, allows business people to closely partner with IT people, keep up with competitors and deliver better services to their customers.
CNCF technologies enable cloud portability without vendor lock-in.
To make cloud native work, project interest of CNCF spans containers, microservices and programmable infrastructure as well as CI/CD networking, storage, logging, nodes, services, monitoring, visualization and more. Additionally we are interested in projects that demonstrate high quality and high velocity.
Finally, we want to make sure the projects we work with are already up and running and proven to solve a problem for cloud native applications. Learn more here.
The CNCF and each of its projects have their own website. What is the relationship and why multiple sites?
The CNCF hosts the various projects. Additional projects will be added as approved by the TOC (proposal process here). The CNCF provides resources to the projects, but each project continues to operate independently under its pre-existing governance structure and with its existing maintainers. The project websites are the best place to learn about and work with each individual project. The CNCF website is a source for cross-project efforts like events and other initiatives.