Exploiting the Cloud for Personal Productivity
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I'm currently doing an evaluation of Drools to illustrate the differences and similarities between it and JRules. Due to time constraints, most of this is being done on a train commuting between Chicago and my home. This means I'm doing most of my work at 60mph over a 3g connection. This also means that my network is constantly dropping, slowing down, and otherwise misbehaving.
So to evaluate drools, I needed to download the 300ish mb zip file and set up. Originally I started downloading to my laptop but realized this was just going to take longer than I really wanted. So, I fired up an ubuntu EC2 AMI, typed "wget http://download.jboss.org/drools/release/5.3.0.Final/guvnor-distribution-5.3.0.Final.zip" and was ready to roll in 5 minutes.
An additional benefit to this is that I can point people to the ip address of the EC2 instance and they can actually start to use the product without requiring me or my laptop to be present. An even bigger benefit is that I can tune this image, get it really good, then snapshot it and resell the image (or ability to create the image) as a starting point to multiple clients for their own rule based projects.