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A round-up of the many themes and topics of interest to infrastructure architects, developers and IT managers

Cloud computing will have as big an impact on how we live and work as the internet has had in recent years. Here we bring you a round-up of the many themes and topics of interest to infrastructure architects, developers and IT managers featuring at SYS-CON's 1st International C loud Computing Conference & Expo being held November 19-21, 2008 at The Fairmont Hotel in San Jose, California.

The conference is expecting a record turnout of senior technologists including CIOs, CTOs, VPs of technology, IT directors and managers, network and storage managers, network engineers, enterprise architects, communications and networking specialists, and directors of infrastructure.



Delegates in San Jose, CA next week will be listening intently to the industry experts speaking at Cloud Computing Expo.

According to IDC, a global provider of market intelligence, cloud computing is poised to capture 25% of IT growth spend by 2012. In particular, the economic downturn as actually increasing Cloud Computing interest. Rather than writing that $2M check for your data center hardware refresh, wouldn't you rather manage your infrastructure as a service? Moving part of your infrastructure to the cloud turns capital expenditures (or fixed costs) into operational expenditures (or variable costs).

These economic advantages are just one among many themes and topics that you'll find explored next week in San Jose, CA. Others include:

Amazon CTO's Cloud Keynote - 'Infrastructure as a Service' is the notion at the heart of next week's Cloud Computing Keynote being given by Amazon's VP & CTO, Werner Vogels. Vogels will be reviewing some of the lessons learned from building Amazon.com - one of the world's largest distributed systems. The focus will be on state management which is one of the dominating factors in the scalability, reliability, performance and cost-effectiveness of the overall system. The keynote is called: "A Head in the Cloud - The Power of Infrastructure as a Service."

Architecture-Aware Cloud Computing
- is the theme of the session being given by Elastra's Chief Software Architect, Stuart Charlton. "The Infrastructure-as-a-Service model of early cloud computing providers has focused on making the hardware layer consumable as on-demand compute and storage capacity," says Charlton. "This is an important first step, but for companies to harness the power of the cloud, it should enhance the alignment driven by enterprise architecture, driving down the lead times for delivering IT value to business, from concept to deployment, and through maintenance," he adds. His session - "Cloud Computing and the Next Generation of Enterprise Architecture" - will discuss in greater detail how this new approach to infrastructure operates and how to increase both alignment and agility through it.

Avoiding Vendor Lock-in - is central to the session being given by Joyent's CEO David Young. In a session called "The Open Cloud," he will explore the essential characteristics of building a cloud infrastructure that - while exploiting the values of cloud computing - gives customers the freedom to change vendors.

Cloud Adoption - the value of cloud services will only be fully realized when organizations can take their existing application workloads, easily deploy them on standards-based cloud infrastructure and benefit from the increased scalability and lower costs of a utility model. That, anyway, is the firm belief of the CTO of Skytap, John Janakiraman, who'll be giving a session on "Cloud Adoption: Deploying Your Existing Applications to the Cloud." His session will outline the key requirements to look for in a cloud provider that can support existing application workloads.

Cloud Deployments - will be at he heart of the session being given by RightScale CTO Thorsten von Eicken, "Deploying into the Clouds: Concepts, Benefits, and Experiences." Drawing on his two years of hands-on cloud computing experience, von Eicken will illustrate the pros and cons of today's cloud offerings. His session will distill the unique characteristics of clouds and describe how to best think about deployments in the clouds.

Cloud Fabric - see The Network as a Cloud Fabric

Cloud Nirvana
- see Virtual Appliances & Cloud Computing

Cloud Storage - Cloud storage requires a new approach to scalable NAS and file serving, accrding to the CEO of ParaScale, Sajai Krishnan, who will be giving a session, "Architecting for Cloud Storage" - in which he will review different architectural approaches to building a clofud or massively scalable NAS system. "The concepts are relevant to enterprise IT managers looking to build a private cloud for their consumption, or for service providers looking to build public clouds to offer storage as a service or anyone interested in Cloud Storage," says Krishnan.

Nirvanix CEO Patrick Harr will be talking about cloud storage, too: his session "Cloud Storage: A Paradigm Shift for IT," will show how cloud storage delivers persistent storage on demand to applications regardless of location and pre-defined boundaries and meets the performance and scalability characteristics of the web applications and enterprise users.

Customer-Centric Cloud Computing - is the chief concern of Joyent's CEO David Young, who will be giving a session exploring the essential characteristics of building a cloud infrastructure that - while exploiting the values of cloud computing - gives customers the freedom to change vendors. His session is called "The Open Cloud."

Disaster Recovery in the Cloud - will be dealt with by 3tera's President & CTO Peter Nickolov. His session will present some of the challenges to achieving disaster recovery and how to effectively deal with issues as data replication, connectivity, monitoring and management appliances that can provide disaster recovery to any Cloud-based application.

Elastic Resources - are what Jason Stowe, the Founder & CEO of Cycle Computing, believe underpin the drive toward cloud computing. "The game is changing," he says. "Companies that normally purchased compute clusters for peak rather than median usage, along with start-ups/SMBs that couldn't access large compute grids, can now flexibly get tremendous computational power very quickly through cloud computing." His presentation is called "Lightning in the Cloud: High Performance Computing using Elastic Resources."

Enterprise Cloud - "The Enterprise Cloud" is the title of the session being given by the VP of Emerging Business at VMware, Dan Chu. As the market seeks to understand how to deliver the cloud, VMware is uncovering its plan to leverage its technology leadership in virtualization to deliver reliable, mobile technology to its customers and service providers worldwide.

Enterprise Requirements - such as reliability, performance, deployability, security, and services form the focal point of the session being given by the Founder, CEO & Technical Director of ENKI, Dave Durkee. His session "Achieving 4 or 5 Nines in the Cloud" will look at what's involved in providing trusted 4- and 5-nines computing together with operations services as a total solution, thus lowering the barriers for Enterprises to move part or all of their applications to the cloud.

Hadoop - features front, left and center in the session being given by Yahoo's Director of Grid Services, Rob Weltman. Large Internet services such as Yahoo!, who face a torrent of incoming data from their click-streams, recognized these limits years ago and built cloud-based tools such as Hadoop that can scale horizontally to address this growth.

High Availability (HA) - is the focus of the session being given by the Founder, CEO & Technical Director of ENKI, Dave Durkee. His session "Achieving 4 or 5 Nines in the Cloud" will look at what's involved in providing trusted 4- and 5-nines computing as Enterprises move part or all of their applications to the cloud.

High-Performance Computing - In a presentation called "Lightning in the Cloud: High Performance Computing using Elastic Resources." Jason Stowe, the Founder & CEO of Cycle Computing will discuss how companies that normally purchased compute clusters for peak rather than median usage, along with start-ups/SMBs that couldn't access large compute grids, can now flexibly get tremendous computational power very quickly through cloud computing.

Infrastructure as a Service - see Amazon CTO's Keynote Address

Interoperability -
between on and off premise cloud computing is a major concern of VMware's VP of R&D Preeti Somal. She has responsibility for vCloud – VMware’s Cloud Computing solutions, and will be giving a presentation in General Session called "Game-Changing Technology for Enterprise Clouds and Applications." Whether you’re a business building a cloud, considering cloud services, or developing for the cloud, this session will reveal how applications will traverse the clouds and why it will change the game.

Investing in Cloud Computing - will be dealt with from multiple perspectives by Lars Leckie, a Principal at Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, in a session covering the tools for cloud computing as well as the leverage that portfolio companies are achieving with cloud computing.

Keynote Address -
will be given November 20 by Amazon's VP & CTO Werner Vogels (see Amazon CTO's Keynote Address)

Obstacles to Cloud Adoption - are what Cloudworks Founder & CEO Mike Eaton intends to discuss in his session "Marketing a Paradigm Shift. "We shouldn’t be surprised that mainstream business is approaching it with caution," Eaton says. "Businesses have many concerns about moving their data to the cloud, some legitimate and some irrational." His session will discuss the obstacles to getting customers to embrace the concept of cloud computing and how to overcome them.

Open Cloud - in a session called "The Open Cloud," Joyent's CEO David Young will explore the essential characteristics of building a cloud infrastructure that - while exploiting the values of cloud computing - gives customers the freedom to change vendors.

Private vs Public Clouds - Private clouds aren't getting enough attention, believes IBM's Gerrit Huizenga. Accordingly he'll be giving a session offering insights for companies converting their existing resources into a private cloud. "Many corporations are looking to gain the benefits of cloud computing with their internal data centers," Huizenga notes.

Real-World Case Studies - lie at the heart of the session being given by RightScale CTO Thorsten von Eicken, "Deploying into the Clouds: Concepts, Benefits, and Experiences." Drawing on his two years of hands-on cloud computing experience, von Eicken will illustrate the pros and cons of today's cloud offerings. His session will distill the unique characteristics of clouds and describe how to best think about deployments in the clouds.

The Network as a Cloud Fabric - is the central idea of the session being given by David Bernstein, VP and General Manager at Cisco Systems. " Cloud Computing by its very nature depends on the Network," notes Bernstein, "for both the construction of the Cloud as well as the delivery to users." His session - "The Network as a Cloud Fabric - Where It Is and Where It's Going" - will talk about how network facilities can already be used today to enable security, isolation, and quality of service. "Utilizing these features, as well as going forward advanced techniques including virtualization-aware networking and geographically distributed VLANs will enable truly enterprise class application infrastructure," adds Bernstein.

Transitioning to the Cloud
- ought to be possible without needing to completely re-architect your applications, believes GigaSpaces CTO Nati Shalom. His session "Getting Ready for the Cloud" will included a 10-minute demo on turning an existing tier-based application into a tierless scaled out application running on the EC2 Cloud.

Vendor Lock-in - see Avoiding Vendor Lock-in

Venture Capital & Cloud Computing -
see Investing in Cloud Computing

Virtual Appliances & Cloud Computing
- will be covered in a session by the CEO of rPath, Billy Marshall, called "On the Path to Cloud Nirvana" in which he will showcase the tremendous flexibility, scalability, and financial savings that result from leveraging virtual appliances and cloud computing.

 

About Jeremy Geelan
Jeremy Geelan is Chairman & CEO of the 21st Century Internet Group, Inc. and an Executive Academy Member of the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences. Formerly he was President & COO at Cloud Expo, Inc. and Conference Chair of the worldwide Cloud Expo series. He appears regularly at conferences and trade shows, speaking to technology audiences across six continents. You can follow him on twitter: @jg21.

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