Putting a sensible head on the cloud

How do we develop a new concept of datacenter to really change the way we use the cloud? Anthony Joseph has a view that 1 person should be able to develop, deploy and operate a next generation internet application. Some of the processes that are being looked at are predicting demand, automatically adding / dropping servers to meet demand and creating tools such as a ‘decision tree’ to replace log messages to make life easier. Using these tools, a single administrator can manage tens of thousands of machines. This is about a
applicabilty at a very large scale.

Joseph next focuses on the fact the utility computing has arrived – any of us can use Amazon cloud services – the entry barriers are very very low. If a computer sits running without space being used, it is lost revenue. So capacity can be offered at cheap prices to ensure maximum usage.

Services like Animoto were launched on the back of Amazon services. The main benefit was managing the peak of user traffic when Animoto suddenly went viral – soemthing the Poken people could learn from following today’s #tnc2010 user crash 😉

For Anthony, Cloud Computing is both software as service and utility computing. Cloud computing must provide at least the illusion of infinite computing resources available for download. the elimination of an upfront commitment by cloud users and the ability to pay for use of resources on a short-term basis as needed. These three elements need to work together to meet the demand.

Economics for Clous Computing is important. When offering this type of service, understanding capacity and understanding cost are going to be very important. Underprovisioning needs to be managed. It costs the same to use 1000 computers for 1 hour as it does to use 1 computer for 1000 hours. Time demanding jobs need cloud comuting.

There are challenges – openAPIs are more competitors are required for this space to really take off. Software licences that meet this dynamic are also needed – pay as you go licences are being developed and rolled out.

All in all a very positive and practical approach to really using the cloud.