December 2014

Cloud Computing: Working the Land and the Data

Grazed from NYTimes. Author: Quentin Hardy.

Kip Tom, a seventh-generation family farmer, harvests the staples of modern agriculture: seed corn, feed corn, soybeans and data. “I’m hooked on a drug of information and productivity,” he said, sitting in an office filled with computer screens and a whiteboard covered with schematics and plans for his farm’s computer network.

Mr. Tom, 59, is as much a chief technology officer as he is a farmer. Where his great-great-grandfather hitched a mule, “we’ve got sensors on the combine, GPS data from satellites, cellular modems on self-driving tractors, apps for irrigation on iPhones,” he said. The demise of the small family farm has been a long time coming...

Cloudstrats - a startup looking to simplify cloud for businesses

Grazed from InformationWeek. Author: Srikanth RP.

Though cloud adoption continues to be on the rise, there are still a host of mid-sized companies for whom cloud computing is still a complex topic. Cloudstrats, a startup, aims to do just that by simplifying the adoption of technologies like cloud for organizations. “In today’s world, only large organizations have access to high-end technology solutions.

Most of the industry best practice solutions are not cost effective for others to explore. SMEs and sectors like education intend to leverage IT best practices for their businesses but are inhibited by the costs and unavailability of the right partner to support them. Cloudstrats was founded with the vision to Make IT Simple for all our customers. We intend to accelerate the adoption of latest technologies by enhancing their accessibility for every company in the market,” explains Piyus Kanti, CEO, Cloudstrats. Kanti says that the firm’s aim is to use IT as a success factor for business, instead of being a bottleneck...

Cloud Computing: Docker, Part 2 - Whoa! Spontaneous industry standard! How did they do THAT?

Grazed from TheRegister. Author: Trevor Pott.

Sysadmin Blog Docker is slowly taking over the world. From its humble origins, which we explored on Friday, as an internal project at dotCloud, through to Microsoft's recent announcement that it will support Docker natively in Windows, Docker looks set to become a major component of modern IT infrastructure.

Today, Docker is powered by Libcontainer, rather than the more widespread LXC. The switch has some very real implications for the future of Docker, for its potential adoption and for its interaction with the community. Libcontainer matters for the same reason that Android matters: control. Consider for a moment that while there are eleventy squillion distributions of Linux out there, almost nobody says "Android Linux."...

Cloud computing and the changing role of the CIO: Which is best for your business?

Grazed from CloudTech. Author: James Bourne.

Cloud computing has been named as one of 12 disruptive technologies which will change the relationship between the CIO and the boardroom, according to a report by Advanced 365. The evolving role of the CIO, and the C-suite in general, has long been a feature of modern business. Opinions differ, whether it’s a wag who proclaims CIO to mean ‘career is over’, or whether it’s a report which advocates more fluency and fluidity between executives.

The Advanced 365 paper takes a look at the different types of CIO today and how it fits in to various businesses:

  • CIO as manager: A CIO who delivers today, may not be as much of an ideas person but manages the business for commercial success
  • CIO as leader: Engaging in and delivering change throughout the organisation, planning for tomorrow and designing new positions within the company
  • CIO as entrepreneur: Dreams about the future, seeks out change and innovates against those changes to improve commercially...

Data analysis SaaS Workiva sets terms for $101 million IPO

Grazed from RenaissanceCapital. Author: PR Announcement.

Workiva, which offers a SaaS platform used by companies to manage the SEC filing process, announced terms for its IPO on Monday. The Ames, IA-based company plans to raise $101 million by offering 7.2 million shares at a price range of $13 to $15. At the midpoint of the proposed range, Workiva would command a fully diluted market value of $581 million.

Workiva had 2,176 customers as of September 30, with 60% of both the Fortune 500 and Fortune 100, including The Coca-Cola Company, Wal-Mart, Cardinal Health, Boeing, Credit Suisse, Google and Chevron. Its ten largest customers make up 5% of revenue. The company's subscription revenue retention rate was 97% as of September 30, and 108% including additional seats purchased by existing customers. The company's management team will collectively own 82% voting power-post IPO...

How the SaaS business model affects software company valuations

Grazed from BizJournals. Author: Efrat Kasznik.

Software vendors across the world are embracing the software-as-a-service (SaaS) cloud-based business model in growing numbers. According to Software Equity Group, SaaS software revenues will likely represent about 25 percent of the overall software market in the next five years. Research firm Gartner estimated that global spending on SaaS will reach $22.1 billion by 2015.

Some software vendors are converting their software delivery and revenue models to SaaS, while others acquire SaaS companies to gain access to this market. SaaS mergers and acquisitions transactions grew 25 percent last year, and the median SaaS exit multiple was more than double that paid for traditional, on-premise software targets, according to the Software Equity Group...

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Another Open Cloud Initiative Launches--And The Cloud Insiders Collectively Groan

Grazed from Forbes. Author: Ben Kepes.

A new initiative backed by IBM and with the involvement of a number of second-tier European vendors was recently launched. It’s always interesting to see these “open initiatives” – they’re generally heralded by triumphant sounding press releases, marketing department-fuelled hyperbole and little else.

Over the past half dozen years or so I have been amazed at the number of times these things have been launched (and, as an aside, does anyone else notice that IBM IBM -0.17% is often the central figure in these deals?). I’ve seen, off the top of my head: DCRM, DMTF, OCCI, ODCA, OSIMM, OVF, SNMP, TOSCA, CAMP… you get the idea. Of these acronyms and initiatives, very few still exist, and even less gained any real traction...

IBM Signs 10-Year Cloud Deal For $10 Billion

Grazed from BreakingFinanceNews. Author: Toi Williams.

International Business Machines (NYSE: IBM) has announced that it signed a 10-year, $10 billion deal with ABN AMRO to provide cloud services to the banking company. The multibillion-dollar service agreement includes the management of the IT infrastructure of the bank and the implementation of a private cloud for the bank’s global operations. ABN AMRO is based in the Netherlands and serves private, corporate, and retail banking customers.

The contract with IBM includes fully managed services for servers, storage, end-user computing, application support, and a help desk. The 10-year agreement also includes the standardization and simplification of the bank’s entire IT landscape. IBM will handle a wide variety of IT tasks for the company, including upgrading its mobile computing operations and maintaining the company’s existing mainframe infrastructure...

Google and Others Eye New Alternative to Docker, Cloud Computing's Next Big Thing

Grazed from Wired. Author: Cade Metz.

Docker is the hottest new idea in the world of cloud computing, a technology embraced by Silicon Valley’s elite engineers and backed the industry’s biggest names, including Google, Amazon, and Microsoft. Based on technologies that have long powered Google’s own online empire, it promises to overhaul software development across the net, providing a simpler and more efficient means of building and operating websites and other massive online applications.

But some of Docker’s earliest supporters now believe that the company behind the technology, also called Docker, has strayed from its original mission, and they’re exploring a new project that aims to rebuild this kind of technology from scratch. On Monday, a San Francisco startup called CoreOS unveiled an open source software project called Rocket, billing it as a Docker alternative that’s closer to what Docker was originally designed to be...

Cloud Computing: Microsoft report card - Grading Satya Nadella's first year as CEO, so far

Grazed from eWeek. Author: Todd Bishop.

Microsoft investors will gather Wednesday morning for a yearly tradition, the company’s annual shareholders meeting at Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue, Wash. It’s Satya Nadella’s first shareholders meeting since becoming CEO nine months ago, and it caps a year of massive change for the company.

If Nadella follows the tradition set by his predecessors, he will give a broad update on the company and do his best to persuade shareholders to buy into his vision. That vision, in his words, is to make Microsoft the “productivity and platform company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world.”...

Working Our Way Toward the Federated Cloud

Grazed from ITBusinessEdge. Author: Arthur Cole.

Some interesting research came out last month regarding the enterprise’s attitude toward the cloud and what it will take to push more of the data load, and mission-critical functions in particular, off of local infrastructure. It turns out that while security and availability are still prime concerns, flexibility and federation across multiple cloud architectures are equally important.

In IDG’s most recent Enterprise Cloud Computing Study, more than a third of IT respondents say they are comfortable with the current state of cloud technology, with about two thirds saying the cloud increases agility and employee collaboration. The key data, however, comes in the attitude toward advanced networking technologies like software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV), with more than 60 percent saying they plan to increase their investment in these areas specifically to enhance their ability to access and manage disparate cloud environments...

Read more from the source @ http://www.itbusinessedge.coam/blogs/infrastructure/working-our-way-toward-the-federated-cloud.html

Channel Partners Needed: Where's Cloud Heading in 2015?

Grazed from TalkinCloud. Author: CJ Arlotta.

We at Talkin' Cloud want to know your perspective on how cloud computing technology such as software as a service (SaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) will impact the channel in 2015. And if you act immediately, you'll even receive a small (but useful) gift of appreciation for your participation. Sounds like a good deal for opinonated channel partners, no?

To help us further understand the insights of our channel partners, Talkin' Cloud made the decision to work with PartnerPath on its State of Partnering annual study, which measures the priorities and challenges in partnering from both the vendor and solution provider perspectives. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete...

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Survey: OpenStack Dominates Open Source Cloud

Grazed from VirtualizationReview. Author: Keith Ward.

Open source is becoming an increasingly attractive option for companies in the cloud, or planning on moving to it. And of those companies, a clear choice has emerged as their No. 1 option: OpenStack. So say the 376 respondents to an Open Source Cloud survey conducted by Zenoss, a vendor specializing in cloud-based management.

Its "2014 State of the Open Source Cloud" study found that 69 percent have implemented some form of cloud computing; of that number, 43 percent have cast their lot with open source. Of those, 69 percent are using OpenStack, which has been on a meteoric growth curve over the last several years...

Amazon Web Services CISO on securing the cloud

Grazed from FierceCIO. Author: Paul Mah.

FierceCIO had the opportunity to speak to Stephen Schmidt, the vice president of security engineering and the chief information security officer of Amazon Web Services, on the sidelines of the re:Invent 2014 conference last month. We were curious as to what the head of security for the world's largest public cloud service had to share regarding top enterprise security concerns, as well as what it takes to keep AWS secure.

Top enterprise concerns

"The biggest concern that I hear from customers is that they don't get the division of responsibility right," said Schmidt in response to our first question. "It's a shared responsibility. We are responsible for the bottom layer. We are responsible from the floor of the data center up to the hypervisor," he said...

Cloud Computing: Why CoreOS just fired a Rocket at Docker

Grazed from GigaOm. Author: Jonathon Vanian.

For the past several months, it seemed like Docker was on its way to becoming the de-facto standard for container technology, the hottest thing in cloud computing in 2014. Then along came CoreOS, which dropped a bomb (or in this case, a rocket) on Monday, kicking off what could become a container-standardization war between the two entities.

CoreOS’s announcement that it has built a container engine that can potentially compete with Docker’s container technology caused quite a commotion within the tech community on Monday. Docker has enjoyed a swift ride to prominence past year with its container skills catching on with some of the biggest names in the industry, such as Google, Amazon and Microsoft...

Cloud Computing: Why Virtual Desktop Infrastructure is not the future

Grazed from BetaNews. Author: Vivek Vahie.

One of the current challenges for a business IT team is supporting a variety of desktops, laptops, tablets and mobile end user devices for employees. This task can be a considerable overhead in terms of time, resource and cost. Physical desktops are not only expensive, insecure, and maintenance heavy, they are also not necessarily a good fit for an increasingly mobile and demanding workforce.

The groundswell of Windows 7 migration plans, an expanding virtual workforce, the growing popularity of mobile devices, and tighter IT budgets each point to the need to re-evaluate desktop strategies. While virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) seems like a promising alternative to managing physical desktops and mobiles, in reality, it’s too costly and complex for most companies to implement successfully...

Cloud Computing: The Internet Of Things Is Reaching Escape Velocity

Grazed from TechCrunch. Author: Matt Turck.

The frenzy around the Internet of Things (IoT) should be reaching its final countdown. There has been a period of extraordinary activity in the IoT space since this original attempt at charting the ecosystem for TechCrunch. While the Internet of Things will inevitably ride the ups and downs of inflated hype and unmet expectations, at this stage there’s no putting the genie back in the bottle.

The IoT is propelled by an exceptional convergence of trends (mobile phone ubiquity, open hardware, big data, the resurrection of AI, cloud computing, 3D printing and crowdfunding). There’s also an element of self-fulfilling prophecy at play, with enterprises, consumers, retailers and the press all equally excited about the possibilities. As a result, the IoT space is now reaching escape velocity...

HP rolls data analysis tools into the cloud

Grazed from ComputerWorld. Author: Joab Jackson.

The pool of online data analysis services available for corporate users is about to grow larger, with Hewlett-Packard set to offer two of its own products as hosted cloud services by early next year. The company's high-performance columnar database, Vertica, will be available as a hosted offering starting early in 2015, as HP Vertica OnDemand.

The company will also offer selected functions of its IDOL (Intelligent Data Operating Layer) text processing software as discrete services that can be embedded into mobile and desktop computing applications, in a package called IDOL OnDemand, already available to selected developers...

IBM Signs $1.25 Bln Seven-year Cloud-computing Services Deal With WPP

Grazed from Nasdaq. Author: Editorial Staff.

Technology company International Business Machines Corp. on Tuesday entered into a new seven-year cloud-computing services contract with British advertising giant WPP Plc (WPP.L, WPPGY) for IBM to transform and manage WPP's global technology platform. The deal will enable WPP to accelerate its digital transformation and global leadership.

"This announcement is a significant milestone in the deployment of enterprise cloud and extends IBM's position as the premier global cloud platform. Our secure, open enterprise cloud platform will enable WPP to quickly deliver new innovations to their customers," said Erich Clementi, Senior Vice President, IBM Global Technology Services...

Cloud Computing: Reinventing the Internet to Make It Safer

Grazed from NYTimes. Author: nicole Perlroth.

What if it isn’t too late to start from scratch? It was only about 40 years ago that Vinton G. Cerf and Robert E. Kahn holed up in the conference room of a Hyatt hotel in Palo Alto, Calif., and sketched out the sets of rules and protocols that laid the foundation of the modern Internet."

Despite big advances in speed, performance, memory and machines, their decisions continue to form the basis for modern digital communications — much to the detriment of security, some experts argue. But the United States government is teaming up with computer scientists to do something about it...

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