Interop New York 2012: A Variably Cloudy Perspective

Mike Spanbauer

Mike Spanbauer

Summary Bullets:

  • The market early optimism towards cloud may have been tempered due to skeptics and the overuse of ‘cloud washing’ campaigns (i.e., everything in the cloud, attached to the cloud, or solved by a cloud of some sort)
  • Enterprises remain optimistic though as many have embraced some form of cloud with measured success and asked good questions about what to do next, moving forward, and leveraging the experiences and concept proofs others have employed

Last week’s Interop show was a success by many measures.  It offered users and vendors the opportunity to interact on critical topics.  The track sessions were reasonably attended, though no one had to fight for seats at this event.  There were few logistical issues, due in large part to the efforts by UBM TechWeb, the company behind the Interop magic (and a great crew running the show). 

As this was the first event I ran the track for, I wasn’t sure what to expect, having always attended as an analyst or merely an attendee.  I was fortunate in that I had some superb speakers contributing to the sessions, many attendees who were asking great questions, and what I feel is one of the most interesting and challenging topics in IT – “How do I realize some of these touted benefits of cloud and make it real – to me?”  While many have experience with projects that did not go as well as envisioned, many of these issues are well known now and can be remedied or avoided altogether:

Culture – a shared goal and aligned disciplines go a long way to ensuring teams are on the same page

Current Inventory – an accurate map of which applications reside where, on which / how many machines, and consume how much CPU / memory currently?

Performance / heat maps – consumption based on time of day, traffic flows, storage dynamics, and more.

Knowing these elements as you begin will help tremendously as you work towards your first or tenth cloud deployment.

In addition, despite some early frustration, enterprises by and large are embracing cloud at an ever increasing pace. With tested solutions for increasingly mission-critical applications proving that just about any app can be in (and benefit from) virtualization in a true cloud architecture. With proven solutions, now customers are rarely the ‘first’ to move an application into a cloud environment, and many of the early trial risks are eliminated by mimicking another’s successful model (or leveraging consultants that have this experience) .

I had the pleasure of having many fantastic discussions at the New York Interop with some great people and  learned a lot of things to further improve the program for Interop Las Vegas 2013.

About Mike Spanbauer
Mike is Service Director for the Current Analysis Business Technology and Software service. Mike and his analyst team monitor and evaluate activities in the markets for Application Platforms, Collaboration Platforms, Data Center Technology, Enterprise Mobility Technology, Enterprise Networking, Enterprise Security, and Unified Communications and Contact Centers. Additionally, Mike reports on major technological, strategic and tactical developments of companies that provide networking solutions deployed on premise to support enterprise business operations.

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