Cloud Computing

Houston

Asia is particularly showing strong desire for cloud, according to the article. There are three main benefits to cloud computing that Asian businesses, especially small and medium sized businesses, are taking advantage of:

The “mobile revolution”;

people want access to services and applications from anywhere and emerging businesses in Asia are using Cloud Computing to meet these requirements

Small and medium sized businesses don’t have large IT budgets. Emerging markets are full of smaller sized business and these have greater opportunities to thrive and grow quickly due to the cost benefits of cloud computing The lack of large initial investment that may otherwise make IT infrastructure unaffordable Cloud computing is having a large impact on enterprises around the globe and 50% of all IT is expected to be in the cloud within the next five to ten years.

1.More businesses will become software companies

2.Application developers will become more important

3.Application workload placement decisions will continue to shift to end users

4.Private cloud will have its moment of truth

5.Cloud brokerage will come into focus

6.AWS will continue its torrid pace of innovation

7.Google, Microsoft will get serious about the cloud

8.The importance of ecosystem will become clear

9.VMware will realise vCHS is critical to its future

10.A feature on the Guardian details a discussion about how cloud computing is helping people to work form anywhere.

It includes the following points:

 

What are the barriers to workplace mobility?

The cloud is enabling increased collaboration

Employees can access information across different locations and devices

Mobility helps improve service levels

The cloud offers increased stability and flexibility

Cloud computing is levelling the technology playing field

Businesses must own company data

What does the future of the workplace look like?

Stephen Fry has voiced a promotional video on behalf of Databarracks explaining the developments over history that eventually led to cloud computing.

The story begins with the invention of the modest abacus in 2700BC and goes on to describe how advances in technology have changed our daily lives ever since.

In the early part of the video Fry explains that Alan Turing and Tommy Flowers realised that software should be separate from hardware and that this eventually led to Tim Berners Lee inventing the internet. This is described as being “arguable the most significant democratising innovation in human history”.

Fry hints that the lightbulb was a key precursor to cloud computing, in that it was the first “utility”. Thomas Edison invented the lightbulb in 1879 but, while a remarkable invention with the potential to change the lives of everyone, it had the problem of the public not having easy access to electricity. Within four years Edison had built power stations in London and New York creating the first utility. Fry describes this as the computing equivalent of the industrial revolution.

Scalability is an important part of cloud computing and the way in which powering machines developed is used as an example of where scalability developed over time in a similar fashion. In the past water from streams and rivers was used to power machinery. This was not scalable though, as growth would require more power, often resulting in having to move to a more powerful water supply, in other words a larger river. Eventually power stations developed so rivers weren’t required. Later the combination of power, water and electricity became a utility and industry was able to operate more productively.

With the development of computing and the internet computing has now become a commodity. Cloud computing has allowed it to become a utility; organisations can use power as and when they need it. In the past this would come down to guess work, whereby not enough computing power would be a risk but too much would cost more than necessary. Now, much like electricity, computing power can be switch on and off as required.

It isn’t just businesses who are turning to cloud computing, but public bodies too. A Wired article discusses how and why many U.S. government agencies are moving into cloud. U.S. government agencies that have utilised cloud computing include the Army, Air Force, Navy, DOJ, USDA and the Department of Education.

The reasons stated in the Wired article for government agencies using cloud computing include improved flexibility while remaining reliable, and improved citizen services.Examples of crucial governement services on cloud.

IT consolidation;

 

leads to increased operation efficiencies and reduces the cost of IT ownership. This reduces hardware costs and energy consumption.

Shared services;

 

more government agencies are sharing IT services with each other, again reducing costs Being able to offer the best service possible while saving on costs is always a major benefit, and this is the case for government agencies as much as it is for businesses. The efficiency and potential cost savings of cloud computing is the key reason why many U.S. government agencies are turning to the cloud.

Once they invest in a cloud solution organisations often think they don’t need operations staff. It is important that they ask whether or not this is taken care of by the provider.

Organisations don’t want to get to a point where they think they can save money on IT staff, only to find they are still required. They need to be clear on what they need in terms of staff, so they can plan accordingly. This can also influence which provider they choose.

Have I taken future growth into consideration?

People have a tendency to fill storage straight away. So if an organisation maximises storage immediately and then find they experience growth, they have a problem. Expected growth therefore needs consideration, with contingency in place.What kind of support do I have?

Support is regularly quoted as being the primary factor in choosing a provider. Organisations need to know who to contact for support and how to contact them. The specific support on offer, and how to go about receiving this support, is crucial.Is what I’m being quoted the full price of the service I want?

According to Allen, companies find “they can get a service with this many CPU’s for however much a month, and then they find [out] about all the extras”.

Customers always need to be aware of what exactly they are getting for their money and what else they might need in addition (and the cost implications of this). This will allow them to more accurately establish the total cost and if a service will meet their needs.

A data centre being physically connected to a local network make it easier to ensure that only those with the correct credentials can access the stored information, thus making the data secure. Whereas the cloud has an array of entry and exit points, all of which need to be protected. Regardless both systems level of security is dependent on the security measures in place, one provider will have better security than another, and one data centre will be more secure than another. It is necessary for the business owner to put in the necessary security measures.

Cost

A data centre can cost businesses £10 million to £25 million per year to operate, not to mention the cost of maintenance and administration. As well as the financial constraint, building the data centre will be a constraint on time.

Cloud computing doesn’t require your time or capital, most providers offer a range of affordable subscription plans to meet all businesses budgets, to meet the performance needs of the service you require.Cloud vs. Data Centre: What’s best for your business?

It is very much dependant on the needs of your business, the cloud potentially has an unlimited capacity, so if you were unsure as to how much data you would need to store and if that was to be ever increasing then the cloud would be most suitable as that is scalable to the needs of your business.

As a third party is managing the system, you would not have as much control as you would with a data centre. In addition to this unless you had a private cloud within the network, you would be sharing resources with other cloud users.