October 31, 2013

Taming the Cloud: The need for standardization and a governing framework

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 7:57 AM

ODCA Forecast 2013 Trailer [Source: v=wJ3I6W9f-I0&feature=c4-overview&list=UUvjxNtT770xVH4ES-mKcU2Q]

In September 2011, the National Institute of Standards and Technology - under the U.S. Department of Commerce - put out their 16th definition of Cloud Computing, with the declaration that it would be the last. It met with a divided house. On one side there were those who hailed this definition as the "gold standard"; at the other extreme, experts who pronounced it suitable for humble government objectives, but not for lofty business ambitions. Forget formal definitions, even the simple question of what constitutes Cloud Computing, and what does not, elicits an equally ambiguous answer. Look beyond SaaS, IaaS and PaaS at Storage, Database, Information, Process, Application, Integration, Security, Management and Testing-as-a-Service. Seriously?

One thing's for sure though. The Cloud is indeed living up to its name - it's amorphous, gigantic, awe inspiring, ever changing. And takes a variety of forms. Consequently, practically no two organizations have taken the same approach to the Cloud. It's doubtful if they even see it in the same perspective.

At the beginning of this month, the world's leading IT research and advisory firm announced that nearly one in two large enterprises would have moved to a hybrid Cloud environment by 2017. With the market for public Cloud services expected to top US$ 131 billion this year itself, the lack of standardization is serious cause for concern.

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February 27, 2013

Big Data Grows Up

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 3:56 AM

It's difficult for any of us to imagine just how revolutionary the concept of a public library was more than a century ago. It was a place where anyone could go and borrow a book with the promise that after you'd read it, you would return it so that someone else could enjoy it, too. Before the development of public and free libraries, vast collections of books and information were status symbols of the rich. They possessed private libraries, and the number of books you possessed was one of the main measures of your power and prestige. Do some rich people still keep massive, private collections of books? Sure. But their decision to collect books isn't at the expense of the greater society. Because free, public libraries exist, pretty much everyone has access to the same kind of information.

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February 20, 2013

Big Data: The Big Deal

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 7:40 AM

While we all see its immense potential value for business, few of us business users have found the means to really harness Big Data. Curiously,  this has only made us more resilient in our quest for answers. Everyone wants those elusive insights, better time-to-insight, with greater accuracy, and in a form that can be readily consumed and acted upon. Because there is no doubt that when we unlock the value inherent in our enterprise's Big Data we also uncover invaluable business advantage. And yet, this realization is of little value unless it also comes with the means to gather, process and act on this Big Data.

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January 16, 2013

Positioning your Enterprise for the Big Data Revolution

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 5:07 AM

big data trends infographic

One of the great marketers of all time - Alfred Sloan, the management expert who built General Motors during the early 20th century, structured his stratagem so that consumers felt they were always aspiring up to the next brand from General Motors. At automobile shows, for instance, there was always a tantalizing show of technologies and features on next year's models so that consumers had a hunch that if they didn't rush into showrooms, they'd be missing out on something big. Now, there's a flip side to that feeling, however. It's a sense of not knowing what seems important to know when you think that you might be missing out on a certain sort of advancement. And, I suspect, when it comes to big data and our own organization's adoption of it...especially for some of us who are charged with staying ahead of the big data curve, that feeling can be quite an ache at times!

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December 17, 2012

Taming Big Data

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 6:52 AM

I am fascinated by what an education policy expert said about the wonders of the Information Age - Students have greater and faster access to the world's repository of knowledge than at any point in history. Yet both standardized test scores and graduation rates continue to decline in America. His observation encapsulates much of what the corporate world struggles with in the shadow of Big Data. There's more information at their disposal than ever before. But unless they know how to decipher and curate these seemingly endless streams of information, what good does any of it do anyway? Like a student who fails a test despite having the great libraries of the world at his fingertips, Big Data isn't worth much if an enterprise doesn't know how to harness its power.

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December 3, 2012

A Fairytale on the Cloud

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 5:02 AM

Most technology success stories come with a "tiger by the tail" moral. So there's Internet and violation of privacy; online banking and risk of fraud; social networking and loss of control... Now, what could it be for the Cloud?

I'm inclined to believe that as an increasing number of organizations go hybrid between private, public and on-premise  they will face big challenges from the resulting multivendor environment. Should they work with the best vendor of each application, or pare down the supplier list to a manageable number? How can they issue and enforce homogenous performance standards among vendors of vastly different services? And above all, how can they get disparate Clouds to integrate and get that elusive 'enterprise-one-view'? Really, enterprises don't need such distractions. What they need is to be free to run and innovate on their core business full time. And, they're hoping that the Cloud can make this happen.

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September 7, 2012

Unclog the IT Traffic Jam. And No Casualties.

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 7:15 AM

Innovation@Infosys : Cloud ecosystem hub

There are many who believe that the technology organization has relapsed from driving or enabling business to being an impediment to it. This judgment, undoubtedly, stems from their frustration of being stonewalled by the tech -powers-that-be whenever they approach them with a challenging request. After all, which driven business leader can wait 6 weeks for let's say - an analytics program - however justified the timeline - when a product promo campaign is a less than a month away? 

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August 7, 2012

Cloud: Through the complexity.To the promise.

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 7:44 AM

A study of Cloud economics conducted, a year ago, concluded that by switching to Cloud computing, organizations could save half to two thirds of the total cost incurred on a 1,000 server setup across its lifecycle. But to view the Cloud as one more cost reduction mechanism is to miss the forest for the trees. Because, I believe, the really big leverage that the Cloud brings to enterprises is innovation acceleration - driving the execution of viable ideas. With the Cloud's promise of capacity, application and infrastructure delivery-on-demand, all enterprises need do is dream up innovative ideas for new offerings or improved processes, assured in the knowledge that the Cloud has all it takes to turn these into tangible products or delightful customer experiences. Freed from the shackles of long drawn process-cramped purchases of capex-heavy technology investments, enterprises can conveniently access capacity in incremental denominations, and then scale up (or down), at will, in response to a need - even as the business itself transforms into an infinitely smarter, and more agile entity that races to market leaving the competition behind.

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March 19, 2012

The Cloud has a silver lining

Posted by Vishnu Bhat (View Profile | View All Posts) at 10:47 AM

Sometime last year, the National Science Center moved its flagship program - called Learning Logic - to the Cloud to enhance its IT staff and optimize infrastructure efficiencies.  Learning Logic went from its earlier server-based avatar to serving a much broader audience. In migrating to the Cloud, the cost savings were significant. But the additional audience was a direct outcome of Cloud-led innovation.

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