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Adaptivity Session at Cloud Expo

There is so much waste in the data centers of Fortune 1000 companies today that a CIO – as an officer of the company – could be considered in breach of their fiduciary duty to stockholders given the dollars in question. Of course that requires costs transparency, so sadly most are safe for now. It seems that every new technology innovation brings the promise of greater efficiencies and cost savings but in reality tends to leave a mess of ‘legacy’ infrastructure on the floor that results in a net higher TCO than the CIO had in the first place.

So what does this have to do with Cloud Computing? While there is no shortage of companies trying to ply their wares as the ideal enabler for Cloud, I am surprised by the lack of attention from vendors that have the most to gain – the Cloud providers themselves. If I put on my CIO shoes here are the things I care about:

  1. Business/IT synchronicity,
  2. Mitigation of risk,
  3. Leverage of new technologies/approaches to reduce the cost of delivering the IT services that the business requires.

Those three items, in that order of priority, are what I need to do to keep my job. Cloud, as a new delivery paradigm, certainly offers the potential to help with #1 and impact #3…but right now when I look at #2 most of the Cloud offerings make it worse, not better. Let’s be real here – if I pursue the Cloud offerings from IBM, Savvis, or Sun/Oracle I’ll feel more comfortable that my concerns about risk mitigation are addressed, but at the expense of the cost savings and business flexibility that prompted me to consider it in the first place. And as for the Google & Amazon offering...I’ll commend Amazon’s latest twist of a Virtual Private Cloud as a step in the right direction, but personally I’m still not going to bet my job on it.

Why can’t highly capable organizations like IBM make this easy for me? I mean, they have the software, services, and outsourcing (Cloud delivery) capabilities to make this easy for me. Why don’t they?

Here’s a thought: how about a Cloud vendor that provides the software tools and services to allow me to set up my own Cloud internally? And better yet, provide remote management capability to help me run it. Heck, while we’re running down the wish list I want the tools deployed locally to allow me to deploy remotely in your Cloud. Even better still – because I’m a suspicious, risk adverse CIO – how about you just offer that “run in my Cloud” as a scenario for Disaster Recovery? I like the sound of that…run in my data center under my control, with Cloud-like attributes to improve business relationships via responsiveness and reduced cost…best of all with my Vendor absorbing the cost and risk of guaranteeing Disaster Recovery. Now that’s a service I’d sign up for.

Sound like utopia? Guess what (IBM, Sun, Savvis, Amazon, Google, et al)…there’s a latecomer to the Cloud party called Unisys that’s offering this today. Why aren’t you?

Adaptivity Session at Cloud Expo

More Stories By Tony Bishop

Blueprint4IT is authored by a longtime IT and Datacenter Technologist. Author of Next Generation Datacenters in Financial Services – Driving Extreme Efficiency and Effective Cost Savings. A former technology executive for both Morgan Stanley and Wachovia Securities.

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