Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Harry Trott, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Astadia CloudGPS

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog

@CloudExpo: Blog Feed Post

CIOs Should Know that IT Is Infrastructure as a Service

Because IT is a support function – it was infrastructure as a service long before cloud computing came along

image InformationWeek has been out and about talking up their most recent CIO survey and keeps calling attention to the fact that one in three CIOs see creating a new business or business model as a driver in 2011. This is not a new phenomenon, but one in three is more CIOs than I would have intuitively thought, so I started to think about it.

There has always been a drive, at least in every company I’ve worked for, that if you want to grow your ivory tower you need to generate revenue. Because IT is a support function – it was infrastructure as a service long before cloud computing came along, if you look at it in the right light – this mentality didn’t generally drive CIOs. Serving the business in the best manner possible was huge on CIO’s list of things to do, but generating revenue just didn’t drive them. Which leads to the question “why now?”

The answer to that question is likely manifold. First, there are those businesses where IT is the business. An online trading house, for example, doesn’t exist without IT. The same is true of Amazon, eBay, and a host of other companies. For those companies, being in IT is 100% being on the business side of the house. Your innovations and modifications are to the lifeblood of the company. Then there’s the advent of cloud, which has people buzzing (right or wrong) about business value and IT as a Service. That has to be playing in these CIO’s minds. And finally, it seems that every year the mantra “do more with less” has been echoing about the halls of IT, and CIOs might just be reaching out for ways to do more and add staff.

But in the end, no matter whether you’re in insurance, utilities, telecom, manufacturing, whatever, IT does add value to the business, and becoming the business is not required to show that fact. Everywhere I have had the opportunity to work, either as a consultant or full-time employee, the company could not function at the level it does without IT. We all know that, the business knows that, the thing is that IT is horrible about communicating that fact. And always has been.

So if you’re in a business whose product is not software, focus on enabling the business, not in creating new business. Lori and I were just chatting this survey up, and she brought up one of the cloud-o-nomics points that makes normal IT folks shudder. No, you’re not generally going to lease out extra capacity to random people. Unless you are in the cloud business, selling cloud services is a distraction from your purpose – to support the business.

You’ve got virtualization to worry about, many of you are starting to look at virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), cloud is on your radar, security concerns continue to leave a dark cloud over IT (yeah I used that allegory), and that’s before you even touch the specific needs of your market and organization. Do not invent work. I’m not saying ignore a good idea – much of the great software out there was created by people who had an internal need and once they solved it they shared it with the world – but don’t say “create new lines of business” as a directive unless your organization is moving that direction.

image The point is that IT grew to the behemoth that it is because the business needed support. That investment is reaping rewards, but unless it was specifically made with the aim of getting into new businesses or business models, there is a risk associated with bleeding off some of those resources on speculative productization efforts. Make sure you’re doing what you’re there for, and make certain the business knows it. IT runs large swaths of the business in a fashion so highly automated that without it, the business would implode. I’m not over-exaggerating here, stop and think what order volume would be with no PCs. Now talk with the business about that. Let them know how much growth is directly the result of IT. I remember an insurance company I worked at doing disaster planning – if HQ was wiped out, likely there would be people needing the services of their insurer – and the plan was to shift to doing everything by hand. Eventually the conclusion was reached that it was not feasible to do that, and a secondary, geographically remote, datacenter was built. That was a golden opportunity to point out that the business wouldn’t be what it was without IT, but from what I could tell, no one was sending that message other than myself, and I was an IT architect, so I was sending that message mostly to IT in the hopes that managers would pick up on it.

So if you’re not an IT business, stay focused on supporting those on the business side. Make every decision based upon “does this help the business”, and make it clear that’s why you’re making it. It’s not as cool as creating new products, but if you want to create new products in IT, then go to work for a business in the IT space. They’re a lot of fun, in my experience, and then your energy will be directed in the right way. But for those in non-IT businesses, show how your initiatives will improve things for the business, and if you can’t, then consider very carefully whether that item should be an IT initiative.

Again, the problem is nothing new, since the first network cable was run, something as simple as “we have to upgrade this network segment or bad things will happen in the future” has been a hard sell. Those who will be most successful at IT management will not be those looking to do businesses job for them, but those who can communicate why IT initiatives will help the business grow.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Don MacVittie

Don MacVittie is founder of Ingrained Technology, A technical advocacy and software development consultancy. He has experience in application development, architecture, infrastructure, technical writing,DevOps, and IT management. MacVittie holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Northern Michigan University, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University.

@CloudExpo Stories
"We've been engaging with a lot of customers including Panasonic, we've been involved with Cisco and now we're working with the U.S. government - the Department of Homeland Security," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Everything run by electricity will eventually be connected to the Internet. Get ahead of the Internet of Things revolution and join Akvelon expert and IoT industry leader, Sergey Grebnov, in his session at @ThingsExpo, for an educational dive into the world of managing your home, workplace and all the devices they contain with the power of machine-based AI and intelligent Bot services for a completely streamlined experience.
Any startup has to have a clear go –to-market strategy from the beginning. Similarly, any data science project has to have a go to production strategy from its first days, so it could go beyond proof-of-concept. Machine learning and artificial intelligence in production would result in hundreds of training pipelines and machine learning models that are continuously revised by teams of data scientists and seamlessly connected with web applications for tenants and users.
"We're here to tell the world about our cloud-scale infrastructure that we have at Juniper combined with the world-class security that we put into the cloud," explained Lisa Guess, VP of Systems Engineering at Juniper Networks, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"I will be talking about ChatOps and ChatOps as a way to solve some problems in the DevOps space," explained Himanshu Chhetri, CTO of Addteq, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We are an IT services solution provider and we sell software to support those solutions. Our focus and key areas are around security, enterprise monitoring, and continuous delivery optimization," noted John Balsavage, President of A&I Solutions, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Your homes and cars can be automated and self-serviced. Why can't your storage? From simply asking questions to analyze and troubleshoot your infrastructure, to provisioning storage with snapshots, recovery and replication, your wildest sci-fi dream has come true. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, provided a ChatOps demo where you can talk to your storage and manage it from anywhere, through Slack and similar services with...
The financial services market is one of the most data-driven industries in the world, yet it’s bogged down by legacy CPU technologies that simply can’t keep up with the task of querying and visualizing billions of records. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Karthik Lalithraj, a Principal Solutions Architect at Kinetica, discussed how the advent of advanced in-database analytics on the GPU makes it possible to run sophisticated data science workloads on the same database that is housing the rich...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to w...
"We want to show that our solution is far less expensive with a much better total cost of ownership so we announced several key features. One is called geo-distributed erasure coding, another is support for KVM and we introduced a new capability called Multi-Part," explained Tim Desai, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Hitachi Data Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
There is a huge demand for responsive, real-time mobile and web experiences, but current architectural patterns do not easily accommodate applications that respond to events in real time. Common solutions using message queues or HTTP long-polling quickly lead to resiliency, scalability and development velocity challenges. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ryland Degnan, a Senior Software Engineer on the Netflix Edge Platform team, will discuss how by leveraging a reactive stream-based protocol,...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SkyScale will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SkyScale is a world-class provider of cloud-based, ultra-fast multi-GPU hardware platforms for lease to customers desiring the fastest performance available as a service anywhere in the world. SkyScale builds, configures, and manages dedicated systems strategically located in maximum-securit...
DX World EXPO, LLC., a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, will examine the regulations and provide insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence...
As businesses adopt functionalities in cloud computing, it’s imperative that IT operations consistently ensure cloud systems work correctly – all of the time, and to their best capabilities. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Bernd Harzog, CEO and founder of OpsDataStore, presented an industry answer to the common question, “Are you running IT operations as efficiently and as cost effectively as you need to?” He then expounded on the industry issues he frequently came up against as an analyst, and ...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devic...
"The Striim platform is a full end-to-end streaming integration and analytics platform that is middleware that covers a lot of different use cases," explained Steve Wilkes, Founder and CTO at Striim, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
What sort of WebRTC based applications can we expect to see over the next year and beyond? One way to predict development trends is to see what sorts of applications startups are building. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Arin Sime, founder of WebRTC.ventures, discussed the current and likely future trends in WebRTC application development based on real requests for custom applications from real customers, as well as other public sources of information.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Calligo, an innovative cloud service provider offering mid-sized companies the highest levels of data privacy and security, has been named "Bronze Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Calligo offers unparalleled application performance guarantees, commercial flexibility and a personalised support service from its globally located cloud plat...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Massive Networks will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Massive Networks mission is simple. To help your business operate seamlessly with fast, reliable, and secure internet and network solutions. Improve your customer's experience with outstanding connections to your cloud.