Posting in Architecture
Ultimately, the touted advantages of cost-savings and flexibility are but a small, and perhaps insignificant piece of the disruptive changes cloud computing means for organizations.
Cloud computing has its share of skeptics. For seasoned IT people, it's just the latest wave of hype seen since the days of client/server computing. For businesses, it means additional, perplexing challenges with security and reliability. But, ultimately, the touted advantages of cost-savings and flexibility are but a small piece of the disruptive changes cloud means for organizations.
The big question Bob put out there at the very start of the discussion was: we hear about all this business transformation that's now going to take place thanks to cloud computing. But the phrase "business transformation" gets uttered every time vendors and analysts are pushing some new paradigm, be it PCs or client/server or Web computing or whatever. Is this time any different?
My colleagues on the panel all provided great and thoughtful responses. 2112 Group's Larry Walsh pointed out that cloud is destroying far more jobs and channel relationships than it creates. He also said that the process of transformation doesn't mean it comes to some sort of conclusion at some point -- it's a process that is ongoing, and will remain so without end. FierceCIO's Caron Carlson also sees new forces shaping the IT landscape because of cloud, taking note of the rise of "rogue IT" that needs to be reckoned with. Greg Gillespie of Health Data Management pointed out that there is potential to for cloud greatly reshape healthcare delivery once regulatory hurdles are addressed.
My response to Bob's question was that cloud is transformative, but for reasons beyond efficiency and cost-savings. Yes, cloud -- as has any and all forms of automation over the years -- means replacing manual tasks with machine-driven tasks, which means fewer jobs in a particular area. And, yes, cloud is only the latest way touted by vendors to cut costs and gain efficiencies.
But the real revolution is only just begun. Here's how cloud is changing the way we do business -- something unheard of previously in the technology space:
Every company now an IT company: Cloud is blurring what was once a clear-cut distinction between the vendors who provided technology products and services, and the customers that purchased and used them. Companies that build and support their own private clouds are learning to extend these services to partners and customers. There are many cases where non-IT companies are becoming cloud providers.
“Loosely coupled corporations”: The term “loosely coupled” came into vogue with service-oriented architecture a few years ago, meaning an entity or system stands fine on its own, but can be dynamically linked to other systems to complete new processes. Cloud computing is paving the way for the loosely coupled company – which may be an entity that exists purely as an aggregation of third-party services, provided on an on-demand basis to meet customer demands. Most of these services will be passed through as cloud services, both from within the enterprise and from outside.
"Extremely lightweight businesses": Call them XLBs, or "extremely lightweight businesses." Companies built and functioning entirely within the cloud, able to take advantage of cheap, on-demand compute resources, formerly only available to large organizations with huge IT budgets. Even supercomputing power is now available on a monthly rental basis. This applies to departments of larger organizations as well -- being able to design new products, without the need for approvals from corporate finance or IT. Roadblocks to entrepreneurship an innovation are removed.
(Portions cross-posted at ZDNet Service Oriented.)
Aug 4, 2012
thanks Joe McKendrick for this uesful info. i don't know much about Cloud computing and usage in business transformation but i want to say that you have to be up to date with the industry to make profit. logodivine
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I imagine IT would be looking at the benefits and risks of running various systems on their own internal cloud platforms and which to outsource or even buy in SaaS. Most banks for example will continue to host their own core banking systems.
Steve Wozniak: Cloud computing will cause "horrible problems in the next five years." Found on Business Insider. Google it.
It was just proven that business DOES NOT police itself... What an ideal scenario for another huge economic disaster. You won't even be able to find anybody responsible. Sorry, your mortgage is 'in the cloud' and we have no direct way to find who sold it to whom. - but you don't own that property any more,sorry! -Or simply, Your bank lost all your money in a cloud transaction. They are bankrupt - and so are you! Meanwhile the money is simply in someone else's cloud system out of reach and out of regulation.
The big hack is coming and the bubble will burst on cloud services. Under the growing weight of state and federal privacy laws, the security concerns with cloud services are not worth the risk. I'll retire before I allow my company to deploy it. Unless of course you are doing IT work in the public sector. Then you get a free get out of jail pass because every data privacy law includes exemptions for all levels of government.
Cloud technology has completely changed the way we do business. In general it has made most businesses more efficient and effective. The industry is growing rapidly and more companies are entering the market everyday. This means more options for consumers, but it can be confusing. If you need help choosing a cloud service then you may want to check out www.Top10CloudStorage.com for some helpful reviews.
Companies need to do more than a credit card transaction for cloud services. They need to build relationship with their cloud vendors, get involved in customer advisory councils and user groups. Demand transparency, build a solid working relationship, just as they would with in-house IT staff.
People are now successfully preventing the execution of foreclosures because the "servicers" are unable to prove ownership. At least in this case, it's the holders of select tranches who are up a creek.
Cloud vendors will not guarantee your data will only reside in the US. Read the fine print, they will not even guarantee its security. They leave themselves so many loop holes in their contracts that you will not be able to hold them accountable when things go wrong. Take a look at the recent Mid Atlantic states derecho that crippled Amazons cloud services for much of the nation. Something their cloud services advertising says should not have happened. Yet it did go down and their service provider contracts were well written to prevent them from being punished by the firms that were impacted by the extended outage. http://gcn.com/articles/2012/07/02/amazon-cloud-outage-summer-storm.aspx http://voip.biz-news.com/news/2012/07/01/0001