Cloud Native Glossary

The Cloud Native Glossary aims to make the cloud native space — which is notorious for its complexity — simpler for people by making it easier to understand, not only for technologists but also for people on the business side. To achieve that, we focus on simplicity (e.g., simple language free from buzzwords, examples anyone using technology can relate to, leaving unnecessary details out). The Glossary is a project led by the CNCF Business Value Subcommittee (BVS).

People watching a Kubecon presentation


Everybody is invited to suggest changes, additions, and improvements to the Cloud Native Glossary. We employ a community-driven process governed by the CNCF to develop and improve upon this shared lexicon. This Glossary provides a vendor-neutral platform to organize a shared vocabulary around cloud native technologies. Contributions are welcome from all participants who abide by the project’s purpose and charter.

Anyone wishing to contribute may submit a GitHub issue or create a pull request. Please ensure you follow the Style Guide, read the How To Contribute doc, join the CNCF Slack workspace, and join the #glossary channel. There is also a #glossary-localizations channel for those who want to help translate the glossary into their native language.


The Cloud Native Glossary was initiated by the CNCF Marketing Committee (Business Value Subcommittee) and includes contributions from Catherine Paganini, Chris Aniszczyk, Daniel Jones, Jason Morgan, Katelin Ramer, Mike Foster, and many more contributors. For a complete contributor list, please refer to this GitHub page.

The Glossary is maintained by Seokho Son, Noah Ispas, Jihoon Seo, Nate W., and Jorge Castro.

Catherine Paganini, and Jason Morgan are Emeritus Maintainers, and we are deeply grateful for their invaluable contributions over the years.


All code contributions are under the Apache 2.0 license. Documentation is distributed under CC BY 4.0.