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Today's post is the latest in our series of videos that look at how customers are taking advantage of Google Cloud Platform. 

All too often, developers spend their time troubleshooting bugs or maintaining existing systems rather than advancing new projects and getting them to market. With Cloud Platform, we want to make sure you can focus on building great features and apps, not troubleshooting bugs. Cloud Platform automates many common infrastructure-management tasks needed to keep your app up and running— so you can focus on code. Hear from our customers including allthecooks, BetterCloud, Streak, and SMART Technologies to learn just how Cloud Platform helps boost their developer productivity in the video below.


-Posted by Kelly Rice, Product Marketing Manager

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Today’s guest blog comes from Jason Collins, chief technical officer of VendAsta, creator of a platform that helps small and medium businesses monitor and manage their online reputations. VendAsta’s customers are large media organizations, such as Gannett, McClatchy and The Hearst Corporation, that then sell the VendAsta platform to businesses.

When we founded VendAsta in 2008, we had great ideas about helping millions of small local businesses manage their brands and local reputation. At the same time, we knew that we didn’t want to go through the headache of building our own data center – some of us had done that before at a real estate startup and it was painful. With fortunate timing, Google App Engine launched at the same time we founded VendAsta, and it was an easy decision to use Google’s infrastructure for building and testing applications. As Google added even more features to App Engine and made it a better product, we knew we’d made the right decision.

In fact, our very first lines of code were written on App Engine. We liked not worrying about server redundancy, data replication, peering relationships, power backup, cooling systems, application scaling, or data backups. We could simply focus on the business logic of our applications, and what we wanted to deliver to our end users. Focusing on the product got us where we are today – our platform monitors the web for any mention on over 200,000 local businesses, analyzes the social content, and helps them figure out what they need to respond to and take action on. Once a business understands its online reputation, it can take steps to improve it, attracting more customers and increasing revenue.

Large architectural strides can be made when you commit to a platform and align with the platform's vision. VendAsta has made that decision, and we’re realizing the benefits of using the full Google Cloud Platform feature set. Today, we have about 75 applications running on App Engine and Google Cloud Datastore, including Social Marketing, a tool that helps businesses share content across social channels, and Reputation Management, which shows businesses what customers are saying about them online.

We’re leveraging several other parts of Cloud Platform as well: we use Google BigQuery for structured analysis to perform multi-location analyses for large brands. With BigQuery, we can build data analytics “hypercubes,” using data from thousands of local businesses – like a chain of thousands of car dealerships that wants to compare the reputations of East Coast locations against those on the West Coast. We use BigQuery to analyze the data, then we use Google Cloud SQL to generate the reports that clients need. Our large number of applications are able to communicate reliably with one another using Google Cloud Pub/Sub as an asynchronous messaging system.

Running our business on the cloud gives us the scalability we need to remain competitive. We have the freedom to seek out more partners who will buy our platform and bring it to their customers, without being concerned about our ability to handle customer requests to onboard thousands or tens of thousands of accounts. And all that time saved by not worrying about our infrastructure has helped us bring more and better product features to the small and medium businesses that rely on VendAsta.

-Contributed by Jason Collins, chief technical officer of VendAsta

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A few months ago, we rolled out support for Push-To-Deploy with GitHub repositories. Today we are happy to extend Push-To-Deploy’s support to Bitbucket Git repositories. By connecting your App Engine project to your Bitbucket Git repository, you can trigger a deployment of your Java, Python or PHP app by pushing to the project’s master branch on Bitbucket.

Push to Deploy automates your build, test and deploy process triggered by your familiar git commands. It makes delivering code changes to your application easy, safe and fast. Furthermore, managing your release on Google Cloud Platform gives you access to the other exciting devops tools such as Log to Source linking.

"Bitbucket users can now easily deploy their apps to Google App Engine." said Jens Schumacher, Group Product Manager at Atlassian. "With Push-to-Deploy, developers can trigger a deployment by pushing to the repository’s master branch or by merging an approved pull request on Bitbucket."

Let’s walk through an example.

Connecting the repository
  1. Go to the Google Developers Console and create a project or click on an existing project that you wish to sync with Bitbucket.
  2. Click Source Code and then Browse in the left-hand navigation panel.
  3. The next step is to link your project’s repository to Bitbucket.

    If your project does not have git repo or has an empty git repo, you will come directly to the “Source Repository Settings” page. Click “Connect” below the Bitbucket logo.
    If your project has a non empty git repo, you will see a screen listing the content of the current repo. You can change repo setting to connect with a Bitbucket repo (note that this will override the current content of the Project’s repo). Click the Settings icon to get to the “Source Repository Settings” page shown above and then click “Connect” below the Bitbucket logo.
  4. You will be redirected to Bitbucket to authenticate and grant access to your Bitbucket repositories. Click “Grant access”. You may be prompted to log into your Bitbucket account.
  5. Once you have granted access, you will see a list of all Bitbucket Git repositories that you have access to. Choose the repository that you want to connect this project to.
  6. Read and accept the consent option in the dialog box and click Connect.
  7. The Bitbucket repository now appears on the Repo Settings page
  8. You can setup your release pipeline following these instructions
  9. Once your release pipeline is setup, every time you push to your project’s master branch on Bitbucket using git push origin master the source code will be deployed to App Engine. The Release page also shows you the status of the current and past deployments.
-Posted by Rae Wang, Product Manager

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Today we are announcing a new category of client libraries that has been built specifically for Google Cloud Platform. The very first library, gcloud-node, is idiomatic and intuitive for Node.js developers. With today’s release, you can begin integrating Cloud Datastore and Cloud Storage into your Node.js applications, with more Cloud Platform APIs and programming languages planned.

The easiest way to get started is by installing the gcloud package using npm:

$ npm install gcloud

With gcloud installed, your Node.js code is simpler to write, easier to read, and cleaner to integrate with your existing Node.js codebase. Take a look at the code required to retrieve entities from Datastore:

var gcloud = require('gcloud');

var dataset = new gcloud.datastore.Dataset({
projectId: 'my-project',
keyFilename: '/path/to/keyfile.json' // Details at 
              //https://github.com/googlecloudplatform/gcloud-node#README
});

dataset.get(dataset.key('Product', 123), function(err, entity) {
console.log(err, entity);
});

gcloud is open-sourced on Github; check out the code, file issues and contribute a PR - contributors are welcome. Got questions? Post them on StackOverflow with the [gcloud-node] tag.

Learn more about the Client Library for Node.js at http://googlecloudplatform.github.io/gcloud-node/ and try gcloud-node today.

-Posted by JJ Geewax, Software Engineer

Node.js is a trademark of Joyent, Inc. and npm is a trademark of npm, Inc.

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Today at the Google for Entrepreneurs Global Partner Summit, Urs Hölzle, Senior Vice President, Technical Infrastructure & Google Fellow announced Google Cloud Platform for Startups. This new program will help eligible early-stage startups take advantage of the cloud and get resources to quickly launch and scale their idea by receiving $100,000 in Cloud Platform credit, 24/7 support, and access to our technical solutions team.

This offer is available to startups around the world through top incubators, accelerators and investors. We are currently working with over 50 global partners to provide this offer to startups who have less than $5 million dollars in funding and have less than $500,000 in annual revenue. In addition, we will continue to add more partners over time.

This offer supports our core Google Cloud Platform philosophy: we want developers to focus on code; not worry about managing infrastructure. Starting today, startups can take advantage of this offer and begin using the same infrastructure platform we use at Google. For example, Headspace is helping millions of people keep their minds healthier and happier using Google Cloud Platform for Startups.

Thousands of startups have built successful applications on Google Cloud Platform and those applications have grown to serve tens of millions of users. It has been amazing to watch Snapchat send over 700 million photos and videos a day and Khan Academy teach millions of students. We look forward to helping the next generation of startups launch great products.

For more information on Google Cloud Platform for Startups, visit http://cloud.google.com/startups.

-Posted by Julie Pearl, Director, Developer Relations

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Today's post is the first in our series of videos that look at how customers are taking advantage of Google Cloud Platform.

There are a variety of ways in which folks use Google Cloud Platform, from analyzing big data with Google BigQuery to spinning up virtual machines on Google Compute Engine. We chatted with a handful of customers at Google I/O this year to hear their stories. We learned about how Audi uses Cloud Platform as part of their connected car initiatives. We chatted with Rudolf of SMART Technologies on how they leverage Cloud Platform to build collaborative applications for the classroom. We heard about how BetterCloud is able to scale effortlessly with the help of Cloud Platform. Hear the full stories from these customers and others in the video below, and stay tuned for more customer videos soon.



-Posted by Kelly Rice, Product Marketing Manager

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Google Cloud SQL read replicas are now available in preview mode for MySQL 5.5 (support for MySQL 5.6 is coming soon).

Read Replica instances allow data from the master instance to be replicated to one or more slaves. This setup can provide increased read throughput. It can also enable the use of Cloud SQL instances as a hot standby for disaster recovery and for running OLAP queries without affecting the performance of the master instance. This support for Cloud SQL Read Replicas comes in addition to the existing support for using customer-managed MySQL instances (running on-premise, on Compute Engine or in another environment) as Read Replicas.

You can try it now by following these instructions.

-Posted by Aditya Mone, Software Engineer