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SHI Sees Rapid Growth in Cloud Demand

An exclusive Q&A with Henry Fastert, Chief Technologist & Managing Partner, SHI Enterprise Solutions Services Group

"The ability to flexibly and quickly adjust infrastructure allows IT to respond to line-of-business requirements in a way that was impossible prior to the advent of cloud computing," noted Henry Fastert, Chief Technologist & Managing Partner, SHI Enterprise Solutions Services Group, in this exclusive Q&A with Cloud Expo Conference Chair Jeremy Geelan.

Cloud Computing Journal: Agree or disagree? - "While the IT savings aspect is compelling, the strongest benefit of cloud computing is how it enhances business agility."

Henry Fastert: Agree. The ability to flexibly and quickly adjust infrastructure allows IT to respond to line-of-business requirements in a way that was impossible prior to the advent of cloud computing.

Cloud Computing Journal: Which of the recent big acquisitions within the cloud and/or Big Data space have most grabbed your attention as a sign of things to come?

Fastert: The EMC Greenplum and HP Autonomy acquisitions are both important indicators of the role of Big Data in the future plans of the major IT providers

Cloud Computing Journal: In its recent "Sizing the Cloud" report Forrester Research said it expects the global cloud computing market to reach $241BN in 2020 compared to $40.7BN in 2010 - is that kind of rapid growth trajectory being reflected in your own company or in your view is the Forrester number a tad over-optimistic?

Fastert: SHI has seen a very rapid growth in cloud demand in the last two quarters. While that is not enough data to support the Forrester estimate, it certainly is trending in that direction.

Cloud Computing Journal: Which do you think is the most important cloud computing standard still to tackle?

Fastert: It's the creation of standard Platform as a Service wrappers for ISV software offerings. This type of wrapper would provide the PaaS layer with the information it needs to create application deployment architectures tailored to specific applications.

Cloud Computing Journal: Big Data has existed since the early days of computing; why, then, do you think there is such an industry buzz around it right now?

Fastert: In the past, most data was of the structured type. Today, unstructured data dwarfs structured data. Big Data is specifically designed to deal with both types.

Cloud Computing Journal: Do you think Big Data will only ever be used for analytical purposes, or do you envisage that it will actually enable new products?

Fastert: Too early to tell, but solving the analytics problem for unstructured data more than justifies the effort to implement Big Data.

More Stories By 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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