Cloud Trends

Cloud Assessment Tool helps match needs with products

Grazed from ZDNet. Author: Ryan Huang.

To help prospective users of cloud computing objectively assess the operational, performance and other critical capabilities offered by different cloud providers, the Asia Cloud Computing Association (ACCA) has put together a Cloud Assessment Tool (CAT). In doing so, it hopes users will be better positioned to select the right cloud solution for their given requirement. The product was the result of over 2 years of extensive and in-depth discussions within the group.

"The cloud computing parameters that determine critical operational criteria like performance and access are not obvious. We found that even when these parameters are reasonably well understood, there is no objective or standardize way of determining or measuring the criteria," said the ACCA. This was the motivation for a framework to help avoid misinterpretation or misunderstandings between users and vendors...

Is this the cloud computing end game?

Grazed from ITWorldCanada. Author: Don Sheppard.

For some organizations, start-ups in particular, cloud computing will be the only IT game in town. Given the choice between acquiring, installing and operating a data centre full of equipment and buying public services on a consumption basis, the choice would be very clear. This choice, however, is not as obvious for larger, well-established enterprises that have already invested in numerous “legacy” systems.

For some leaders, a major commitment to cloud computing could be a very difficult and potentially risky decision. How about a simple thought experiment? Let’s imagine what the cloud computing end game is – what it means for an enterprise to go “all in” with cloud computing...

Cloud Computing: A Necessity, Not an Option

Grazed from PCMag. Author: Michael J. Miller.

Competition is a wonderful thing. And the increased competition in cloud services – especially the intense battle among Amazon, Google, and Microsoft – is resulting in services and pricing that would have been hard to imagine just a few years ago. Over the past month, all three of the big players, plus a variety of smaller ones, have introduced new products and services for the cloud.

About a month ago, Google started this round of price cutting at its Cloud Platform Live event, where it cut prices on most of its services, some rather dramatically. Compute fees dropped by 32 percent, and standard storage prices went down to 2.6 cents per gigabyte per month. A similar drop in prices for its consumer product, Google Drive, gives you 1TB of storage for about $10 a month. That's quite compelling...

Cloud Computing: Moore’s law gives way to Bezos’s law

Grazed from GigaOM.  Author: Greg O'Connor.

Cloud providers Google, AmazonWeb Services (AWS) and Microsoft are doing some spring-cleaning, and it’s out with the old, in with the new when it comes to pricing services. The latest cuts make it clear there’s a new business model driving cloud that is every bit as exponential in growth — with order of magnitude improvements to pricing — as Moore’s Law has been to computing.

If you need a refresher, Moore’s Law is “the observation that, over the history of computing hardware, the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles approximately every two years.” I propose my own version, Bezos’s law. Named for Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, I define it as the observation that, over the history of cloud, a unit of computing power price is reduced by 50 percent approximately every three years...

SMB Cloud Computing – Seven Key Trends

Grazed from TechAisle.  Author: Michael O'Neil.

It is stunning to see how much corporate IT realities have changed in the last five years. Today, an increasing proportion of infrastructure is rented rather than purchased, sourced with OPEX funds from remote suppliers. Agility has become the watchword for new automation projects, and acceptable timeframes are no longer calibrated in months. End-users can source applications, infrastructure and other needed services from a wide variety of online resources. And workers are tethered to the corporate infrastructure by their smartphones and tablets, not by the cables attached to their desks.

Most of these changes are attributable in part or in whole to cloud computing. Cloud infrastructure provides the basis for OPEX-based, flexible-timeframe infrastructure rentals. SaaS providers are able to deploy new automation in hours rather than months. Mobility is not really a discrete initiative so much as it is a key attribute of ubiquitous infrastructure. And IT now competes for corporate IT influence and budgets – it is no longer the “final word” on IT/business solution strategies...

Leveraging Cloud, Open Source To Aid Embattled IT

Grazed from EnterpriseTech. Author: George Leopold.

IT executives laid out the challenges and opportunities created by cloud computing, open source, and other disruptive technologies during this week’s Red Hat summit in San Francisco. With the rise of mobility, social media, big data and cloud computing, “The reality today for the enterprise IT organization is it is a nightmare,” warned Steve Bandrowczak, Hewlett-Packard’s CIO for enterprise services.

Enterprise IT administrators must now hustle to meet the heightened expectations of workers who have grown accustomed to instantaneous access to data and video downloads along with two-second response times. The challenge, Bandrowczak added, is to “take that massive complexity and simplify it for our users and make it faster,” while adding “higher value and lower cost.”...

Hybrid Cloud Dominance Is Here, and Self-Service IT Is Next

Grazed from MidSize Insider. Author: Rick Robinson.

Cloud computing has become the norm; and as the cloud skyscape matures and firms balance specific requirements with the advantages of flexibility, the trend is moving toward hybrid cloud dominance. Another result of cloud maturation is the growing prospect of self-service IT, particularly for developers. These cloud-centric trends are reshaping the IT environment at midsize firms. As traditional in-house IT fades among midsize firms, the new midsize IT is taking shape as a broker and manager of multiple and varied cloud resources.

The State of the Cloud Is Strong and Dynamic

As Serdar Yegulalp reports at InfoWorld, software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider RightScale has released its 2014 State of the Cloud Report. The report's headline finding should surprise no one by this point: The cloud has gone mainstream. The survey of more than a thousand IT professionals from firms of all sizes, both tech-oriented and otherwise, finds that most of them — 94 percent — have moved beyond the "Cloud Watcher" stage and have launched at least their first cloud operations...

Ingram Micro Selects Parallels Automation as Core Cloud Services Platform

Grazed from Parallels. Author: PR Announcement.

Parallels, a leading hosting and cloud services enablement provider, today announced a significant expansion of its strategic alliance with Ingram Micro Inc., a leading master cloud services aggregator and provider, as well as the world's largest wholesale technology distributor and a global leader in IT supply-chain and mobile device lifecycle services.

As part of the relationship, Ingram Micro will adopt and deploy Parallels Automation as the core service delivery platform for its new global Cloud Marketplace, which was announced today at the Ingram Micro Cloud Summit 2014. Parallels expanded relationship with Ingram Micro also includes an equity investment by the distribution leader that demonstrates Ingram Micro's commitment to the platform and the alliance...

How cloud computing will single-handedly save the nonprofit sector

Grazed from Technorati. Author: Steve Shattuck.

There’s a lot to be excited about in the nonprofit sector today. New technologies are allowing charities to reach current and potential donors at a rate and ease never seen before. Although charitable giving grew 4.9% in 2013, some metrics paint a cloudier picture of the sector’s overall health. Donor retention rates have dropped year-over-year over the past seven years - the entire span in which its been officially studied - landing at only 39%.

That same metric dips into the 20s when considering first-time donors only. Online giving’s percentage of overall giving contracted from 7% in 2012 to 6.4% in 2013 and effective social media usage still lags behind the for-profit sector. Some sub-sectors of the nonprofit world are reporting annual employee turnover rates upwards of 100%...

Three mistakes that can doom your private cloud design from day one

Grazed from TechTarget. Author: Nick Martin.

Cloud computing may be the next logical evolution of virtual data centers, but rushing into a private cloud design can create more problems than it solves. Unfortunately, many companies (or at least C-level executives) fall into the trap set by software vendors and believe that they need a cloud yesterday -- and that building one is as simple as selecting a product.

Once on this path, it doesn’t take long for most to realize building a private cloud is much more complicated than paying for licensing and management software, said Ivan Pepelnjak, chief technology advisor at NIL Data Communications, at an Interop session. "I can't tell you how wrong this approach is," Pepelnjak said. "And I see this happening with about 80% of the customers I see...