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Morphlabs CEO Winston Damarillo Explains Why "Cloud is Cooler"

Former Gluecode Founder/CEO Discusses His Business & Vision

Winston Damarillo is CEO of Morphlabs, Inc. and G2IX (Global Gateway Innovation Exchange). A native of the Philippines, he previously founded Gluecode Software Inc. and served as its CEO before selling the company to IBM in 2005.

A native of the Philippines, Winston has also been named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Before he headed off to Davos 2011, I was able to talk with him a bit about his business and his vision.

Below is the first part of the interview, which covers his current business. The second part of the interview addresses his global vision and participation with the Forum.

Roger Strukhoff: So let's start with an overview of what Morphlabs is doing, and how that ties into G2iX.

Winston Damarillo: G2iX was the innovation umbrella that nurtured the three companies I currently manage: Exist Global, Morphlabs, and MaestroDev. All three now operate autonomously. It was a perfect set-up at a time when the market was soft, as we waited for a rebound. At this stage, I sit as Chairman of all three companies, but both Exist Global and Maestrodev now have their own CEOs to lead them.

Strukhoff: You started in the Philippines, but are now present in the US as well, correct?

Damarillo: Yes, Morphlabs has since then moved its operations to the US, but maintains development and engineering in Cebu (Philippines). It has also opened operations in Japan and Australia. It will continue to be an active cloud enabler with a complete product portfolio of an Saas, Paas, and IaaS for MSPs, datacenters and the enterprise--and the only one that can say that is Enterprise Cloud Architecture-compliant.

Strukhoff: As we were getting ready for this interview, you mentioned to me that "web services was cool, cloud is cooler." This seems to tie in with the idea that Cloud Computing is really the integration and culmination of a number of interesting things that have been going on for a few years.

Damarillo: In 2010, Cloud Computing not only became the buzz of the industry, but the solution that a lot of enterprises have been clamoring for. From most of the surveys I've seen, more than 67 percent of the CIOs tell us that they have plans or are already implementing Cloud in their organization in 2011.

This is important data. As it is, Cloud has permeated the enterprise fastest than any technology out there.

Damarillo: You said "permeates" the enterprise...

Winston: Yes, Cloud Computing impacts all aspects of the IT infrastructure. As just one example, look at the base layer--we are now seeing a practical implementation of technology methods to increase and optimize IT infrastructures utilization levels that currently stand at 9 percent.

But what really makes Cloud super cool is that it touches the entire chain of IT delivery. Cloud Computing--done right--amplifies the performance of IT administrators, allowing them to serve a higher density of computing customers, Software development in the Cloud era is substantially accelerated by liberating the developers from concerns of infrastructure code, such as clustering and fault tolerance, and focus on application-level innovation.

Strukhoff: How is what you're doing today compare with the Gluecode days? Is is just the next logical step, given what's going on with IT today?

Damarillo: In 2005, Gluecode was able to address a market niche that made it a disruptor to a big player. It was exciting to slug it out with a couple of major industry competitors. In 2010 and now, Morphlabs by comparison seems to be grouped with a crowded market. Although we pride ourselves to be able to offer a wider range of solutions and compliance to a legitimate Cloud Architecture, we have to make that known to the enterprise.

Strukhoff: Salesforce just acquired Heroku, most because of its multitenant approach to development. How significant does this seem to you?

Damarillo: We are happy for Heroku. This is a very nascent market and success of any player should be viewed as success for the sector. The power of the Heroku solution is the fact that it enable a new level of productivity for the RoR developers by simplifying the environment that they need to program against, and automating the management of deployed applications. This is a concrete example of the power of the Cloud Architecture.

Strukhoff: And what can we expect from Morphlabs in 2011?

Damarillo: Broad distributions and Cloud Solutions orientation and OpenStack.

The Morph team is looking forward to making our technologies more accessible to end-users. For private cloud, we are going to be releasing a downloadable software appliance the mCloud Enterprise Platform to accelerate enterprise evaluation. That will be couple with the release of mCloud on Demand via Amazon AWS to deliver the same experience without tacking any hardware installs.

Expect to see more solutions orientation for the release of the mCloud-branded products. Our broad platform allowed us to engage a lot of customers in 2010, and the key take-away from this is they prefer Cloud Solutions in the context of the client. We are planning to release Solutions Oriented Products in 2011.

The most exciting part of the industry is the tremendous progress and acceptance of the OpenStack open-source project. This endeavor has the opportunity to unify and consolidate foundation of cloud computing infrastructure much like what Apache has done for the webservers, and Eclipse for the Java IDE. We are looking forward to stepping up our contributions to the projects and transitioning our product core to it.

More Stories By Roger Strukhoff

Roger Strukhoff is Executive Director of the Tau Institute for Global ICT Studies, (@TauDir), with offices in Illinois and Manila. He is also a writer & editor for SYS-CON Media. He writes for Cloud Computing Journal & Computerworld Philippines. He is Conference Chair of WebRTC Summit and Things Expo. He has a BA from Knox College, Certificate in Tech Writing from UC-Berkeley, and MBA studies at CSU-East Bay. He serves on the board of the Campbell Center for Historic Preservation Studies, and has served as Director, U.S. Coast Guard Aux Int'l Affairs.

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