Cloud Innovation Happens Outside Silicon Valley, Too
Post Date: October 30, 2008 @ 6:52 PM, Pacific Daylight Time
Blog: The Essence of 'On-Demand'
I'm heading to Toronto this weekend to be part of a panel on cloud computing at a conference called "Powering Innovation: A National Summit," co-sponsored by Canadian research networks CANARIE and ORION. Although my presentation will focus on the enterprise, the overall focus of the conference takes me back to the early research focus of GRIDtoday -- and I think that's a good thing. Just as the enterprise is struggling with cloud computing and how to best leverage its myriad benefits, so, too, is the research sector.
I'm going to keep this quick: the cloud computing market has changed drastically in the past week. It will be some time before we know what the effects will be, but Microsoft announcing its cloud computing platform and Amazon taking EC2 out of beta (and adding Windows support and an SLA) definitely are game-changers.
Appistry Does Cloud Transition Right; Mosso Gets Political
Post Date: October 27, 2008 @ 12:17 PM, Pacific Daylight Time
Blog: The Essence of 'On-Demand'
Appistry is enabling GoGrid and SkyTap customers to choose Appistry-powered virtual servers, and it is doing it right. From a license perspective, the company is working with the providers to ensure hourly billing for the Appistry images, and the software already is a natural fit for the cloud. And Mosso announced yet another Web site customer that has big potential but few resources.
IDC got it right. Hopefully, a major analyst firm making this distinction will help dispell some of the myths and confusion surrounding the cloud. I've been trying recently to differentiate between cloud computing and cloud services, so I was thrilled when I read that IDC predicts cloud services not cloud computing will be a $42 billion industry by 2012.
There, I said it. And I'll stand by it as long as we're talking about the enterprise. Google is a Web company and is targeting Web users. And even it acknowledges that App Engine is a work in progress. When Google decides to target the enterprise, I think we'll know. I just want to stop hearing about "the Googles and the Amazons" in reference to cloud leaders.
Most cloud computing talk centers around whether users will make the switch -- and rightfully so -- but don't think the whole paradigm begins and ends with what end-users want. ISVs are interested, too, and the more they switch to SaaS delivery models, the more real the cloud becomes.
You might have seen the news on Thursday that Merrill Lynch is using IBM's iDataPlex servers as part of its "stateless computing" strategy. But these stripped-down-yet-optimized boxes are part of IBM's "cloud computing" initiative ... so what gives?
Here are some quick thoughts on a couple of yesterday's cloud computing announcements. What these show us are two distinct trends: (1) cloud computing is becoming increasingly viable; and (2) the word "cloud" to describe SaaS is creeping dangerously close to lethal levels.
It's as if we literally cannot go through a week without some breakthough announcements in cloud computing. On Wednesday, that news was that both 3Tera and (drum roll, please) Amazon are bringing Windows support into their cloud offerings. (I know, I know: GoGrid has been offering Windows virtual servers for some time -- but Amazon being the cloud poster child and all ...)
Although I'm not the first one to say it, I'm going to say it nonethess: Larry Ellison has a point about cloud computing being "gibberish." But what Ellison -- like oil and coal stalwarts in the energy sector -- fails to understand (or refuses to acknowledge publicly) is that the long-term benefits of "fashionable" trends like clean energy and cloud computing are so strong they all but guarantee success.
Keeping tabs on the trends making IT more agile and more efficient, from automation to virtualization.
Derrick Harris is the Editor of On-Demand Enterprise
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