DZone Research: Problems Solved with the Cloud
Check out what these cloud industry professionals and executives had to say about the solutions that cloud computing provides.
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To gather insights on the current and future state of the cloud, we talked to IT executives from 33 companies about their, and their clients’, use of the cloud. We asked, "What problems are being solved with the cloud?" Here's what they told us:
Economies of Scale
- At a big-picture level, the most important problem the cloud solves is the inherent disadvantage of economies of scale. These days, small, smart, focused teams have access to powerful platforms that previously would have been beyond their reach, both financially and operationally.
- Right-sizing their investments. Deal with peak demand without paying for peak demand all along. Operational cost. Most analytics teams get insight out of data rather than getting statistics on performance. Benefit from the economy/efficiencies of the cloud.
- No brainer, no servers or environment to manage. As a SaaS provider life is easier. For the customer no data center or infrastructure.
- No infrastructure or labor costs. When have things on-prem you need local expertise to maintain and manage. When you move to the cloud, it’s someone else’s responsibility. You don’t need a systems administrator or DBA on site.
- Eliminating capital assets such as servers in a data center, improving flexibility for new business initiatives, and providing near-limitless capacity are all attractive value propositions — for both us and our customers when using the cloud. Additionally, many of the hosted services are now offered by cloud providers, such as databases, queues, data processing pipelines and so on. This frees companies from having to own and manage any servers to get those capabilities.
- Three groups of benefits: save money, speed, and diversity of workloads.
- As business needs and requirements change, traditional IT infrastructure has grown far too complex to match the speed and agility demanded. For many companies, a move to the cloud is about eliminating complexity and improving IT responsiveness to evolving demands while eliminating the costs incurred to house, manage and power traditional systems. With these removed, companies can refocus valuable staff on revenue-generating activities and realign IT to assist – rather than hinder — with the execution of business plans. Others see the cloud as a valuable tool for powering workloads with unpredictable or unknown characteristics especially those with a global reach, such as development activities.
- Provide access to data and set of analysis tools. Easy to maintain. Cost of ownership is lower.
- 1) TCO of the software. Software licensing was getting expensive. More pricing flexibility. Pay-as-you-go. 2) Outsourcing operations. 3) Easy integration with other services. Cloud solves all of these. Always on the latest version.
- 1) Reduce vendor-lock-in: The availability of multiple cloud providers is helping to alleviate the vendor lock-in issues we saw in the past, allowing developers and their teams to choose more than one provider based on evolving needs. 2) Cost reduction: Cloud also allows companies to save on overhead costs associated with on-premise data centers. 3) Flexibility and scalability: Being able to use cloud resources when you need them and dial down when you don’t. 4) Price to Performance: We provide the best resources for a competitive price.
- Enabling the enterprise to scale infrastructure and services and making them available for everyone in a consumption-based service model.
- Agility and flexibility. Before the rise of cloud environments, it was much harder to start up and scale applications (up or down) based on business demands. Some core capabilities such as security are also arguably better handled in consolidated multitenant environments with deep expertise amortized across many clients, rather than requiring every company to have deep domain expertise in such areas.
- Ephemeral compute spins up, stateful application comes later. A lot of problems when going beyond ephemeral compute. Similar issues with IoT and edge processing. Related data complexities with more sources and types. Platforms make it easy for developers to embrace next-generation applications. Disaster recovery — the ability to mirror your data to a cloud with a cheaper tier of storage than your data center.
- For some of our customers, the complexity of implementing yet another enterprise application that their already constrained IT staff would be responsible for is just too heavy a burden. In many cases, our customers would not be able to implement the innovation our software enables.
- The amount of data that can be stored in the cloud enables applications to address problems using machine learning (ML), advanced analytics and AI. It changes traditional applications that use “data + algorithms to drive outputs” to “data + output to drive algorithms.” Algorithms go from being fixed inside the application to being determined by the data. The volume of data and flexibility of the cloud deployment model is essential to enabling this new paradigm. The scalability and elasticity of the cloud can handle demands from various constituents of an enterprise without worrying about other activities like infrastructure, procurement, installation, product tuning, and monitoring. The cloud provides analytic services directly, outside the application. This is a change in the software use paradigm.
- Business agility. Retail edge workloads are more intelligent. Store-based systems think for themselves to improve CX. Re-engineer existing business practices. Visibility aspect of things what’s running out there, is there a shadow IT issue? Cloud management activity. Better efficiency. Self-service for employees. DevOps use the cloud to develop apps faster and get to business faster.
- Geographic distribution of data. Rapid innovation with low cost of failure. Rapid prototyping. Faster. Unlimited scale.
- Internally we use the cloud to gain access to resources on-demand and to avoid hardware purchases and systems management, whereas smaller companies often don’t have the capacity for power, cooling or physical space for additional servers.
- The public cloud frees up resources, which helps users focus on growing their business instead of constantly building, deploying, and managing infrastructure. For example, spinning up a proof of concept in the cloud happens in minutes, where the same project on-premises could require waiting for IT to deploy and secure servers just to get started.
- Hosting is probably the biggest and most obvious, but for many small shops it’s the ability to harness massive amounts of compute power by the minute or hour on an as-needed basis.
- Want to make workload and systems rapidly accessible. Move into the cloud to be more resilient to outages.
- It’s not cheaper. Breakeven is months but ignores the cost of the people involved in setting up and managing the infrastructure and the opportunity costs. Get there faster without the people.
- Speed to market, speed of analysis, security with instant patches, AI/ML. We are making sure the cloud platform and our platform is up to date. Can patch thousands of sites in real-time. Can take time to realize there’s a problem with on-prem technology.
Here’s who we talked to:
- Bikram Gupta Sarma, Vice President of Platform Engineering, Actian
- Glenn Luft, V.P. of Operations and Bill Tolson, V.P. of Marketing, Archive360
- Andreas Pettersson, CEO, Arcules
- Steven Mih, CEO and Frank Cabri, V.P. of Marketing, Aviatrix
- Linus Chang, Founder, BackupAssist and Scram Software
- Tim Jefferson, VP Public Cloud, Barracuda Networks
- Julian Dunn, Director of Product Marketing, Chef
- Andrew Larkin, Head of Content, Cloud Academy
- Sabapathy Arumugam, Co-founder and CTO, CoreStack
- OJ Ngo, CTO, DH2i
- Jeff Chou, CEO, Diamanti
- Shiven Ramji, VP, Product at DigitalOcean
- Kelly Stirman, CMO, Dremio
- Mike Milinkovich, Executive Director, Eclipse Foundation
- Lucas R. Vogel, Principal Consultant, Endpoint Systems
- Jason McGee, VP and CTO, Cloud Platform, IBM
- Erik Kaulberg, Senior Director, INFINIDAT
- Rich Petersen, President and Co-founder, JetStream Software
- Mark Brewer, CEO, Lightbend
- Adnan Mahmud, CEO and Founder, LiveStories
- Jack Norris, V.P. Data and Applications, and Bill Peterson, V.P. Industry Solutions, MapR
- Ryan Duguid, SVP Technology Strategy, Nintex
- Sebastian Straub, Senior Systems Engineer, N2WS
- Chris Brown, Technical Marketing Manager, Nutanix
- Vamsi Kiran Chemitiganti, Chief Strategist, Platform9
- Mike LaFleur, Global Director of Solution Architecture, Provenir
- Simon Galbraith, CEO, Red Gate Software
- Jamie Tischart, V.P. Operations, SendGrid
- Christian Kleinerman, Vice President, Product, Snowflake
- Aaron Brooks, Director of Innovation, Softchoice
- Rafi Rainshtein, Vice President of R&D and DevOps, SysAid
- Rob Lalonde, VP, GM NavOps, Univa
- Rajesh Ganesan, Vice President, Zoho Corporation
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