October 27, 2008
If people are concerned about the know-how or third-party interface required to scale or perform parallel processing in the cloud, things just got easier with Appistry's announcement that its Enterprise Applications Fabric (EAF) will now be available on two public cloud offerings -- GoGrid and SkyTap.
(Speaking of GoGrid, have you seen NoHardware.com? It features possibly the geekiest B-movie shorts ever, and definitely the only ones combining cloud computing and assault rifles. And CEO John Keagy's performance as Dr. GoGrid gave me nightmares.)
Appistry has been providing its enterprise customers with private clouds for a few years now, and, according to Appistry's Sam Charrington, “In many ways, they get to enjoy more of the promise of cloud computing than the folks … using public clouds have gotten to, mostly because there’s this gap that exists between getting a bunch of virtual machines from a cloud provider and really having a cloud-enabled, cloud-like application that can take advantage of those.” A middleware solution designed to abstract applications from the underlying architecture, create a pool of resources, and provision them as the application requires, EAF takes care of the "just a bunch of virtual machines" issue.
Charrington added that much of the hype around cloud computing stems from this gap between what users want and what clouds can deliver. "We … elevate the application so it can achieve those high levels of service -- high levels of scalability, high levels of reliability, high levels of performance -- in any of these environments."
This might be a particularly good move for Appistry because it has a chance to carve out a niche as the company enabling high-performance applications to run on public clouds. It's current customers run a variety of applications, and one, GeoEye, uses EAF to process satellite images. If customers are able to build similar virtual architectures, the scope of applications suited to running in the cloud could expand.
I asked Charrington why Appistry chose these two partners and not, say, Amazon, and his answer is that GoGrid and SkyTap are just more serious about enterprise must-haves like quality-of-service and SLAs.
License-wise, Appistry and its cloud partners are working to ensure customers can use their Appistry virtual machines in an hourly billing model. At the moment, it is addressing the licensing issue moving from its per-CPU-per-year subscription model (which includes support) to a more cloud-friendly per core model.
For its internal customers, Charrington says the company "pretty frequently" kicks around the idea of utility billing and/or chargeback capabilities, but acknowledges that "we're not quite there yet. Plus, customers like knowing they have use of EAF and support for the entire year. He does note, however, that Appistry is flexible in working with customer needs. For example, “If someone says ‘We’ve got this great opportunity. We don’t want to invest upfront, but it’s going to save us lots and lots of money,’ we’d entertain talking to them about sharing in that savings.”
You might notice a difference in Appistry's approach to partnering with cloud providers versus that of Oracle. I asked Sam about Larry Ellison's disparaging cloud comments, and he pretty much laughed it off as Larry being Larry. However, he added, hopefully Appistry can help a start-up SaaS company take advantage of cloud computing and grow up to be the next Oracle "so we don't have to listen to the flack from Larry so much."
Speaking of public clouds (or, in this case, cloud platforms), Mosso just keeps on rolling and seems to be the platform of choice for new Web sites that require on-demand scaling the way only cloud computing can. Specifically, Mosso seems to attracting usage from start-up sites that cover hot topics, and therefore could experience major traffic spikes with little warning Today, Mosso announced that it is powering YouDecide2008.com, "a bi-partisan Web site and blog supporting lively discussions and information about this year’s election, which experiences great spikes in demand."
CNN.com they're not, but Mosso's work with popular sites like AppleiPhoneSchool.com (which experienced a 4x spike when iPhone 3G was released in July), YouDecide2008.com and the Teen Choice Awards (whose Web site received more than 34.5 million votes over a few weeks) proves that Mosso is succeeding in what it set out to do. As co-founder Jonathan Bryce told me earlier in the year, that is to provide “a place where developers can basically upload their code and we take care of the rest.”
Posted by Derrick Harris - October 27, 2008 @ 12:17 PM, Pacific Daylight Time
Derrick Harris is the Editor of On-Demand Enterprise
No Recent Blog Comments
The ever-growing complexity of scientific and engineering problems continues to pose new computational challenges. Thus, we present a novel federation model that enables end-users with the ability to aggregate heterogeneous resource scale problems. The feasibility of this federation model has been proven, in the context of the UberCloud HPC Experiment, by gathering the most comprehensive information to date on the effects of pillars on microfluid channel flow.
Large-scale, worldwide scientific initiatives rely on some cloud-based system to both coordinate efforts and manage computational efforts at peak times that cannot be contained within the combined in-house HPC resources. Last week at Google I/O, Brookhaven National Lab’s Sergey Panitkin discussed the role of the Google Compute Engine in providing computational support to ATLAS, a detector of high-energy particles at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).
Frank Ding, engineering analysis & technical computing manager at Simpson Strong-Tie, discussed the advantages of utilizing the cloud for occasional scientific computing, identified the obstacles to doing so, and proposed workarounds to some of those obstacles.
May 23, 2013 |
The study of climate change is one of those scientific problems where it is almost essential to model the entire Earth to attain accurate results and make worthwhile predictions. In an attempt to make climate science more accessible to smaller research facilities, NASA introduced what they call ‘Climate in a Box,’ a system they note acts as a desktop supercomputer.
May 16, 2013 |
When it comes to cloud, long distances mean unacceptably high latencies. Researchers from the University of Bonn in Germany examined those latency issues of doing CFD modeling in the cloud by utilizing a common CFD and its utilization in HPC instance types including both CPU and GPU cores of Amazon EC2.
05/10/2013 | Cleversafe, Cray, DDN, NetApp, & Panasas | From Wall Street to Hollywood, drug discovery to homeland security, companies and organizations of all sizes and stripes are coming face to face with the challenges – and opportunities – afforded by Big Data. Before anyone can utilize these extraordinary data repositories, however, they must first harness and manage their data stores, and do so utilizing technologies that underscore affordability, security, and scalability.
04/02/2012 | AMD | Developers today are just beginning to explore the potential of heterogeneous computing, but the potential for this new paradigm is huge. This brief article reviews how the technology might impact a range of application development areas, including client experiences and cloud-based data management. As platforms like OpenCL continue to evolve, the benefits of heterogeneous computing will become even more accessible. Use this quick article to jump-start your own thinking on heterogeneous computing.