Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White

Related Topics: @CloudExpo

@CloudExpo: Article

Cloud Computing - The Jargon is Back!

The ASP is dead, long live the Cloud!

Brian de Haaff's Blog

Cloud computing, utility computing, SaaS, on-demand, grid computing, etc. The jargon is back. The acronyms, the vendor jockeying, the funny names, and yes, the confusion. But does it really matter any more than it did 10 years ago when you couldn’t grab a bite to eat at the local Silicon Valley deli without hearing those three special letters – ASP – that were at the forefront of our collective brain when we talked about applications running in the cloud. (They usually came right after the other three letters: IPO, but let’s not go there.)

I remember well because I was in the vortex of the last cloud revolution. In fact, for better or worse I coined the category Application Infrastructure Provider (AIP) in 1999 while working at Concentric Network, responsible for marketing for the hosting product line and data center services. We were responding to perceived customer demand and media attention for ASPs (Application Service Providers). We had bandwidth, we had space, and we had servers—put it together and you get Infrastructure and the name. We productized the service and Network World named it Product of the Year. It was not our best seller.

So what’s changed in 10 years? Will the outcome be any different when we talk about businesses running software (or storing data) offsite and accessing it via Web browsers? Will they actually do it en masse? The pundits say, “Yes!”, but will it really happen this time?

I do think we’ll succeed this time because things are different.

There’s still lots of hype—note a recent June Deutsche Bank report that states “We expect SaaS revenues to grow to $56.5B in 2015 (nearly 70% of the overall market in just 8 years time).” But, I think that things have changed for cloud-based on-demand services in five major ways that will alter our collective computing future:

1. ASPs (and AIPs) were single tenant driven, which means that you were responsible for piecing together your own infrastructure (whether you provisioned your own or rented it from the provider) and also for creating or buying the software that ran on it. This was akin to moving your own data center to a third party facility. You still had almost all of the same IT headaches. Today, cloud-based, on-demand services are multi-tenant. Vendors pull together infrastructure and resources, and automatically allocate and balance them so many users can simultaneously use them.

2. Because the platforms are multi-tenant, the vendors can cost-effectively take on more responsibility for the underlying technology. Businesses now take advantage of the scale and efficiency that comes through the vendor’s ability to serve multiple companies on the same computing platforms. This is a fundamental shift because businesses are no longer responsible for maintaining the infrastructure themselves, no matter what type of on-demand service they choose.

3. Salesforce.com. Enough said.

4. Ubiquitous broadband. Enough said.

5. Every established software company is making significant investments in moving their offerings to an on-demand, pay-as-you-go business model (not to mention the heavy hitters like Amazon and Google that are already offering their own on-demand services).

In addition, to the fundamental changes that have taken place, the benefits of on-demand services for businesses and their end users are clearer. The advantages include instant access to the software that businesses need to improve their operations, cost efficiency of pooling their software and computing needs with other companies, reduced risk of failed software implementations and tapping strained internal IT resources, and flexibility in terms of being able to change providers. This all comes with the tradeoff of relinquishing some control, but it appears to be well worth it to most companies.

So, it appears that on-demand services are really happening this time, so let’s try to agree on a framework for talking about the various offerings. And let’s start with a diagram to simplify the discussion:

When you boil it down, on-demand services are all cloud computing based. And there are really only three types of them:

1. Software-as-a-service (SaaS) is really where this wave started and it makes up the largest bucket. These vendors typically provide a single application or a cluster of small applications targeted at a general business task (e.g. CRM, billing, HR, etc.). Examples include Salesforce.com for front-office activity, Netsuite for back-office activity, and Paglo to manage IT and operations. They are “application specific” meaning that the business uses the functionality that the vendor provides rather than building their own. The vendor builds out and manages both the infrastructure and the software and the customer only needs to input or manage their data in the applications.

2. Platform-as-a-service (PaaS) offerings get slightly more complicated. Here the vendor provides the infrastructure, software stack, and typically a data source. This is an emerging cross-over area that successful SaaS and online vendors are now promoting. This is often where the SaaS provider opens up their platform to third party applications (whether built by a business to serve its own needs or developers to sell to the businesses that are already using the core SaaS offering). So while this expands the application functionality of the SaaS provider, the applications are still related to the core offering. For example, Salesforce.com’s Force platform is designed mostly for customer-relationship oriented applications that leverage the data in a Salesforce.com customer’s account and Facebook’s F8 platform is ideally suited for additional applications that tie to the user’s social network. We would also put Google’s App Engine into this category (despite the fact that they do not provide a data feed).

3. Pure cloud computing platforms provide the server infrastructure and the business is responsible for their own software stack and ultimately the application that runs on it. The business can run just about any software that it wants as they are “application agnostic.” The main force (and a good example) in this market is Amazon Web Services

Here’s one way to compare the application flexibility and level of responsibility that the business takes on with each option:

It’s true, ASPs are dead, but they set us on the path to get on-demand services right. Advancements in technology and service delivery have improved the value for businesses to adopt these services. Now, let’s just start being clearer about what’s happening, so businesses can best choose the services that will help them succeed.

We are well on our way – long live the cloud!


[This article appeared originally here and is republished in full with the kind permission of the author.]

 

More Stories By Brian de Haaff

Brian de Haaff is the CEO of Paglo, the world's first search engine for IT. The company helps make IT administrators heroes by enabling them to discover all of their IT data and quickly solve computer, network, and user problems. The service is offered as SaaS and enables users to benefit from the community and the contributions of their peers through Paglo share-its.

Comments (3) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
The Subversive 07/16/08 01:30:59 PM EDT

Profitable 'cloud computing' companies – Salesforce.com (subscription), Digg (text based payloads), Google (text based payload). Unprofitable cloud computing companies – Gmail (text, pictures, video), YouTube (video), Flickr (photos), Hotmail (text, pictures, video), Plaxo (contacts). You get the picture. While always-available consumer and corporate data and content services are incredibly popular for a range of scenarios, they're incredibly expensive to host and maintain.

In the end very few companies will be able to do this profitably, because it will be a tripartite equation: audience size, data payload size and egress/ingress rates and payment model. Anyone who fails to balance the three in a sort of perfect triple point will fail at it.

Morph eXchange 07/16/08 01:19:33 PM EDT

We are a SaaS enabler based in Asia, initially harvesting on the power of EC2.

Jargoneer 07/16/08 01:09:48 PM EDT

"Persistence as a Service" is another new one - anyone heard that one yet?

@CloudExpo Stories
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
With billions of sensors deployed worldwide, the amount of machine-generated data will soon exceed what our networks can handle. But consumers and businesses will expect seamless experiences and real-time responsiveness. What does this mean for IoT devices and the infrastructure that supports them? More of the data will need to be handled at - or closer to - the devices themselves.
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists will examine how DevOps helps to meet th...
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Val...
Building a cross-cloud operational model can be a daunting task. Per-cloud silos are not the answer, but neither is a fully generic abstraction plane that strips out capabilities unique to a particular provider. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Wolf, VP & Chief Technology Officer, Global Field & Industry at VMware, will discuss how successful organizations approach cloud operations and management, with insights into where operations should be centralized and when it’s best to decentraliz...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud taking place June 6-8, 2017, at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International 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 wait for long developm...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR), an industry leader in automated, scalable and secure networks, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Juniper Networks challenges the status quo with products, solutions and services that transform the economics of networking. The company co-innovates with customers and partners to deliver automated, scalable and secure network...
Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the USA and Europe, we work with a variety of customers from emerging startups to Fortune 1000 companies.
Financial Technology has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, 2017, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech.
In his keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Sheng Liang, co-founder and CEO of Rancher Labs, discussed the technological advances and new business opportunities created by the rapid adoption of containers. With the success of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and various open source technologies used to build private clouds, cloud computing has become an essential component of IT strategy. However, users continue to face challenges in implementing clouds, as older technologies evolve and newer ones like Docker c...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Aruna Ravichandran, vice president of DevOps Product and Solutions Marketing at CA Technologies, has been named co-conference chair of DevOps at Cloud Expo 2017. The @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo New York will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, and @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo Silicon Valley will take place Oct. 31-Nov. 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CollabNet, a global leader in enterprise software development, release automation and DevOps solutions, will be a Bronze Sponsor of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, taking place from June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CollabNet offers a broad range of solutions with the mission of helping modern organizations deliver quality software at speed. The company’s latest innovation, the DevOps Lifecycle Manager (DLM), supports Value S...
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Val...
@GonzalezCarmen has been ranked the Number One Influencer and @ThingsExpo has been named the Number One Brand in the “M2M 2016: Top 100 Influencers and Brands” by Analytic. Onalytica analyzed tweets over the last 6 months mentioning the keywords M2M OR “Machine to Machine.” They then identified the top 100 most influential brands and individuals leading the discussion on Twitter.
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Twistlock, the leading provider of cloud container security solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Twistlock is the industry's first enterprise security suite for container security. Twistlock's technology addresses risks on the host and within the application of the container, enabling enterprises to consistently enforce security policies, monitor...
Multiple data types are pouring into IoT deployments. Data is coming in small packages as well as enormous files and data streams of many sizes. Widespread use of mobile devices adds to the total. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists will look at the tools and environments that are being put to use in IoT deployments, as well as the team skills a modern enterprise IT shop needs to keep things running, get a handle on all this data, and deli...
Automation is enabling enterprises to design, deploy, and manage more complex, hybrid cloud environments. Yet the people who manage these environments must be trained in and understanding these environments better than ever before. A new era of analytics and cognitive computing is adding intelligence, but also more complexity, to these cloud environments. How smart is your cloud? How smart should it be? In this power panel at 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, pane...
In recent years, containers have taken the world by storm. Companies of all sizes and industries have realized the massive benefits of containers, such as unprecedented mobility, higher hardware utilization, and increased flexibility and agility; however, many containers today are non-persistent. Containers without persistence miss out on many benefits, and in many cases simply pass the responsibility of persistence onto other infrastructure, adding additional complexity.