Podcast: Outages and Clouds

In episode 24, I sit down with Tim Crawford, CIO Strategic Advisor at AVOA and a well-known blogger and thought leader on cloud computing. We discuss a variety of topics, ranging from outages to containers to open source.

We start the conversation talking about the big legacy companies that are competing in the cloud against the Big Three (Amazon, Microsoft, and Google). Although the Big Three get all the press, we talk about how companies like IBM, Oracle, HP, Cisco, EMC, and others are competing in this space. Tim’s message is: “You can’t count these guys out.” Oracle just posted some large revenue numbers for cloud in the last quarter. IBM has rolled out some impressive technology with the combination of SoftLayer, Bluemix, and Watson. All of these companies know enterprises and have deep relationships there. They have all made acquisitions to up their game. None of them has the breadth of services and features that an Amazon or Microsoft has, but they do have viable offerings and are all still in the game.

Next, we discuss some outages that all occurred on the same day recently. United Airlines had an outage that grounded flights for a few hours. The New York Stock Exchange halted trade that same day due to system issues. Then, the Wall Street Journal was down, most likely from everyone hitting the site trying to figure out what was going on with the stock exchange. Tim addresses how DR/BC is nothing knew, yet our approach to it is broken and antiquated. In the old days, we tried to address DR/BC through hardware resiliency. Maybe it’s time to try a new approach. Hardware is a commodity, and resiliency needs to be handled in the application layer. A good cloud architecture will allow and expect hardware to fail.

From there, we move to the question, “Are containers ready for the enterprise?” Tim feels that they are, but asks, “Is the enterprise ready for containers?” We talk about changing the mindset behind how software is built and the age-old challenge of organizational change management that comes into play every time a new technology enters the enterprise.

We close with a discussion on open source. Open source is now widely adopted in enterprises. But Tim reminded us that open source does not mean free. He gives us some good advice about evaluating open source and strategies around using it inside the enterprise.

Check out the podcast. It is an insightful conversation.

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Mike Kavis
Mike is a VP/Principal Architect for Cloud Technology Partners. Mike has served in numerous technical roles such as CTO, Chief Architect, and VP positions with over 25 years of experience in software development and architecture. A pioneer in cloud computing, Mike led a team that built the world's first high speed transaction network in Amazon's public cloud and won the 2010 AWS Global Startup Challenge. An expert in cloud security, Mike is currently writing a book for Wiley Publishing called "Architecting the Cloud: Design Decisions for Cloud Computing Service Models (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS)" which is expected to be released in late 2013.
Mike Kavis

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