Cloud Computing was probably the most popular buzzword of 2009. There was a lot of hype, but basically, cloud computing is about using the large datacenters of the Internet to your advantage. Either by copying the methods they use to be very scalable and available and applying them in your own datacenter (what VMware is partly trying to do with their "private Cloud", "vCloud"), by outsourcing your infrastructure (PaaS, SaaS) to an external datacenter via the Internet or most likely some hybrid form. 
 
In 2010, all the hype and buzz should materialize. Will you use a form of cloud computing?
 
{poll 167:550}
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  • afkrotch - Sunday, January 3, 2010 - link

    I can see cloud computing working for some and not for others.

    SMBs, I can see getting into it. Less worries about having to purchase/license software in-house and also less tech support in-house. Large enterprises, pretty much a no go. To little control.

    For the home user, most will probably stick with what they already have. While there is a lot of broadband access out there already, many still get the lowest service possible. The thought of having to pay a monthly subscription fee to multiple different companies, instead of just a single purchase at your local Best Buy is undesirable.

    Those who are much more mobile, probably won't mind the change. Being able to access your data from anywhere on any computer is very desirable. Not to mention, that the computer doesn't have to have specific software to access/view your data.
    Reply
  • Wwhat - Friday, January 8, 2010 - link

    If you want central access on the go a simple VNC server at home should also work, I assume there are VNC (and such) client apps for mobile devices.
    Or a SSH server at home, you don't need to pay all those fees, I though people were more techsavvy than the AOL/compuserve days and that that kind of thing went the way of the dodo.
    Reply
  • Zirconium - Thursday, December 24, 2009 - link

    You, like many others, are missing the point. The unfortunate thing is that the word "cloud" means many things, everybody gets fixated on one definition, blasts it, and then thinks that applies to all the others.

    Lets start with what you think the cloud is. You probably saw the chrome OS, said, "no sir, I don't like it," shook your head, and went on eating hay. This is not the cloud that is being discussed in this survey.

    Amazon, among other companies, offers a service where you can rent virtual instances in their data center. What you do with this instance is up to you, and there are several applications. The two primary uses of this service currently are servers of some sort (database or web server) or to do some high-throughput computing. Again, people bash on the former; why pay higher rates for hosting through amazon where there are many hosts that are "good enough," much cheaper and easier to administer? The second one is the really interesting one.

    Imagine that you are a researcher. Periodically, your lab gets a large volume of data that needs to be crunched. You can do one of the following:

    a) Crunch the data on your desktop or on a small set of affordable servers for several days/weeks
    b) Buy a large cluster that starts getting obsolete the moment you assemble it and maintain it even when you don't need it
    c) Reserve a few hundred high-throughput 8-core/15GB-RAM spot-instances on EC2 at a bargain basement price of $0.30/instance/hour

    C is the really cool one. If you are fine a waiting until midnight for your computations to start (or when the spot instance prices drop low enough), you rig them up, let them go, and they are done the following day before even a generously sized grid could get them done.

    The cloud will always be more expensive than doing things in-house, provided you have greater than X% utilization (I don't know what X is, but let's say it is 50%). But if your compute requirements periodically spike, and they are urgent, then using cloud computing services is your best bet. This then allows democratization of high throughput computing. You could come up with an idea that requires a lot of CPU, swipe your credit card at Amazon, and quickly/cheaply/easily test it out.
    Reply
  • Wwhat - Friday, January 8, 2010 - link

    Thanks for saying I do not get it then basically reiterating what I said, you are my own private little cloud I guess.
    The cloud 'revolution' is not about researchers, it's about normal people, and cloud computing for research was around before we had computers in the home, that is not new.. Wait now I'm repeating myself and you will repeat what I say after saying I don't get it, ad infinitum.

    I stand by what I said and you can just reread it and then say 'Now you get it!"

    Reply
  • pullmyfoot - Thursday, December 24, 2009 - link

    I think that most of the answers to this is going to be based on the size of the organization. option one would appeal to large companies with many datacenters in different locations as compared to small/medium sized enterprises while 4 and 5 would appeal to the latter mentioned.

    maybe you could find some way to reflect this in the survey?
    Reply
  • Czar - Wednesday, December 23, 2009 - link

    Cloud computing basicly consists of 3 things.

    1. Private corporate clouds
    2. Software as a service
    3. Hosted platforms

    Private corporate clouds

    These mostly consist of big VMware and Citrix clusters which will do way more than just server consolidation. Most companies already have the platform up and running but what we will see them start to use it more is for disaster recovery and desktops. Yes 2010 is the year virtual desktop infrastructures will be mature enough for common usage where most of the old problems will be solved.


    Software as a service

    Today we have some very good examples like Salesforce but more and more companies are starting to offer this. What's most interesting is that Microsoft is slowly trying this out with app streaming in Office 2010. This will mostly just be an option that smaller companies and consumers will look at since bigger companies will have compliance requirements that will stop them for now. What is also interesting is that with more and more software being offered as a service are basicly competing against already some mature free offerings. This will just hopefully drive software prices down.


    Hosted platforms

    This one is simple. Before you rented web space and just got an URL and ftp access, now we can get full desktops as the managment tool. You basicly get your own Virtual Machine. This enables endless options for everyone to get whatever they want hosted somewhere in the world.


    What we are not going to see

    At VMworld last year we saw them promise a future were you had your own datacenter and if you needed more power you could connect your private cloud to some service providers cloud to extend your own cloud. This I'm not seeing happening for the next few years. The big problem with this vision is that with virtualization you have so much flexibility and excellent overview of your infastructure that planning for growth is so easy. If you do get a spike in cpu requirements that it takes up all your cpu power then your own internal cloud is simply broken. On the private cloud you have loads of VM's on loads of CPU Cores and if you do get an unexpected spike you just simply throttle down the power needs for unimportant VM's. The bother of having a high speed link to some third party cloud provider is just way too costly. Expecialy since cpu power is so so very cheap these days.
    Reply
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