The last panel discussion before lunch in on the future of cloud computing.
Sitting up on the panel for this one is Lee Congdon the CIO from Red Hat, Marc Ferrentino the Architect at Salesforce, Erik Troan CTO at rPATH, Roland Wartenberg is BizDev at Citrix, all moderated by Steve Bulmer the CTO at Consonus Technologies.
Wait, that’s not the Steve Ballmer I was expecting! Just kidding.
Steve starts out by giving us a definition of what cloud computing is, then continues reading from a text stuffed slide with more definitions.
Marc Ferrentino says he’s impressed by the definitions because he feels like the term cloud computing is being used for a lot of things that it really isn’t. He’s looking at “platform as a service” as the next big thing.
Lee Congdon feels like we’re still going up the hype-side of cloud computing, but feels like we’re not too far from actually hitting the “productive” plateau after the peak of the hype.
The success and ease-of-use of the Amazon cloud has pushed It departments to suck less when it comes to clouds. People want to know why it can’t just be as easy as Amazon’s?
The initial push will be for internal clouds which will be more readily accepted. Once security concerns are taken care of internally, public cloud computing will become the de-facto solution.
Cloud computing will grow organically just like open-source adoption grew.
Steve asks, “Are there areas of cloud computing that the panel feels are still to immature?”
Ummm, no, not really. Although be careful when choosing, because some of the “platforms as a service” can actually lock you into that platform says Lee.
Marc calls BS on Lee’s scary “lock-in” scenario. I’m hoping that a Salesforce vs. Rad Hat fight breaks out right on stage.
What questions should you ask when moving to a public cloud? It depends on what you’re doing. Maybe you need security, maybe you don’t. All computer systems are going to have problems, just try to get someone who is active in responding to those problems.
Maybe you don’t want your kids information in an S3 cloud, but for almost all of your data, the information just isn’t really all that sensitive. Also, the people at Amazon’s S3 cloud are putting much more thought and resources towards security than your internal IT department probably is.
What about the business value and ROI on the cloud.
Again, it depends.
Marc says, if it helps you make sales, then the answer is, it’s worth it, if it doesn’t, then it’s not. The cloud works best when innovation is coming at you hot and heavy. No real need to move the payroll app to the cloud, it doesn’t change much so why spend all the money to move it?
Agility is a big win, and agility can happen best in the cloud. The cloud is there to absorb huge spikes in demand and just keep the cash register ringing.
Is the new mobility causing more cloud computing solutions? In short – yes.
Marc says that Salesforce may soon have an announcement about Salesforce on the iPad – breaking news!