Episode 4

Sergio Méndez: SRE, Professor & CNCF Ambassador to Guatemala


March 29th, 2021

35 mins 51 secs

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Special Guest

About this Episode

Sponsored by Reblaze, creators of Curiefense


Justin Dorfman | Richard Littauer


Sergio Méndez

Show Notes

Hello and welcome to Committing to Cloud Native Podcast! It’s the podcast by Reblaze where we talk about open source maintainers, contributors, sustainers, and their experiences in the cloud native space. On today’s episode, we have a wonderful guest, Sergio Méndez, who is an SRE and Professor of operating systems, software engineering, and AI at San Carlos University of Guatemala. He is currently working at Wizeline as SRE and working on DataOps using Airflow, Kubernetes and Containers. Sergio is the the organizer of the Cloud Native Guatemala Community Group and is working to get students and people from Central America involved into the CNCF ecosystem. Today, we learn how Sergio got started in Cloud Native, what he does at Wizeline, how he got involved in Kubernetes, building Chatbots, getting involved in the Linkerd community, and using his passion to help students in Guatemala. Also, where does Sergio think the future is with the Spanish involvement in Cloud Native, and what projects he’s excited about in the future. Download this episode to find out so much more!

[00:00:36] Richard gives Curiefense updates for this week!

[00:02:39] Sergio tells us how he started getting involved in Cloud Native, open source, systems engineering, and being a professor at St. Carlos University of Guatemala.

[00:03:45] Richard wonders if Sergio connects a lot with other people in his organization of the cloud data group, Guatemala community group, with people from Nicaragua, Columbia, or Mexico. He also tells us how many people are in his community group.

[00:05:43] We find out what Sergio does at Wizeline, how he went from being an SRE to really being involved in Cloud Native, and how he started getting involved in Kubernetes.

[00:11:18] Sergio did a talk at KubeCon 2020 on how to build Chatbots using Cloud Native based on some work he did with Telefónica. He fills us in on how he got that job and what he was doing there.

[00:13:50] Justin wonders how Sergio got involved with the Linkerd community.

[00:16:31] Richard wonders how Sergio is building that passion in the community that he’s building in Guatemala and how is he helping people learn about these cool things. Also, what talks go on and what is he offering to people who come to the events, especially during COVID.

[00:19:58] Justin brings up a talk he saw that Sergio did in Spanish that gave him chills because he saw his passion, and Sergio shares a story.

[00:23:48] Sergio tells us how he judges the open source movement in Central America and where he thinks the future is in terms of Spanish involvement in Cloud Native.

[00:27:55] Justin asks Sergio if he thinks that Latin America is going to be like the next hub in terms of outsourcing just like India is.

[00:30:50] Sergio informs us on what projects he’s super excited about in the future and what lights the fire in him concerning Cloud Native.

[00:33:13] Find out where you can follow Sergio online.


  • [00:34:00] Justin’s spotlight is Jekyll.
  • [00:34:13] Richard’s spotlight is two people, Alexis Palmer and Robert Henderson.
  • [00:34:42] Sergio’s spotlight is Alex Ellis.


[00:10:25] “So this guy was starting to move the talk and started to manage the attendees, and that kind of things, telling some jokes, and that kind of things, that’s really funny, really nice guy. So, I said, Oh, that guy is really nice! So, in that moment I said, Wow, maybe this guy doesn’t know anything about these technologies. Can you remind me what guy is this? Kelsey Hightower! Yeah, that was Kelsey Hightower! So, that is why I really admire very human people.”

[00:11:57] “So, in that moment I remembered that I didn’t know too much about Kubernetes, so I say well, this is the opportunity to experiment with Kubernetes.”

[00:12:27] “Yeah, it was really fun, we play in that moment a lot with Rancher. We create that Chatbots using Containers like in a serverless way.”

[00:12:45] “But this one break of one of the CNCF ambassadors, Alex from OpenFaaS, so yeah, we used that break on that moment.”

[00:14:05] “I think that I was exploring on the CNCF, let’s say exploring the landscape. I was really curious about that.”

[00:17:34] “But the moment dies in the university too, so I said why not start something new with a new topic something more interesting and I started that group, and then I started to ask myself how to get involved with the students too, maybe they can pick this community to be their community, not my community.”

[00:18:52] “I met Paulo, that’s another ambassador form Brazil. He’s trying to push Latin America to another level, to be more visible for CNCF and that kind of thing.”

[00:19:58] “ I saw one of your talks in Spanish and it was I think really important because it’s showing that you can be inclusive when you’re talking about open source and cloud native stuff, and it just really kind of gave me chills and I’m not lying.”

[00:23:01] “The impact that you have on the students and other countries that maybe don’t have too much access to this kind of technology, so it’s very excited and motivated for the students and that kind of things.”

[00:24:43] “I think that the philosophy here in Guatemala, because we are like a third world country, they promote, or they see the benefits of just open source because you don’t have to pay a license and that kind of things.”

[00:26:20] “But I think that the Latin people is the next force forward of working for something.”

[00:27:46] “Mexico is really big to work on technology and they are working for big U.S. companies, so yeah, I think that is something that is growing right now.”

[00:29:41] “I think for me, let’s say the that the top countries, as a working force for IT technologies are like, I can say that Mexico is a really huge one, and some South America countries like Brazil, Argentina, Columbia, and that countries are in the top of the working force for IT and working for foreign people.”



Curiefense Twitter



Justin Dorfman Twitter

Richard Littauer Twitter

Sergio Méndez Twitter

Sergio Méndez Linkedin

Sergio Méndez Website



Bridget Kromhout on Kubernetes-O’Reilly

Protocol- “From McDonald’s to Google: How Kelsey Hightower became one of the most respected people in cloud computing.”

Ambassador spotlight: Paulo Simoes-Cloud Native Computing Foundation


Alex Ellis Website

Alexis Palmer

Robert Henderson

OpenStreetMap: Guatemala