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Cloud Power Panel at SYS-CON's 1st International Cloud Expo

The Risks & Rewards of Cloud Computing for the Enterprise

The future of cloud computing is all about lowering costs and getting the ability to easily move between service providers. At the Cloud Power Panel on Friday at the 1st International Cloud Expo in San Jose, CA, the power panelists - Songnian Zhou, CEO of Platform Computing; Thorsten von Eicken, CTO of RightScale; Peter Nickolov, President & CTO of 3tera; Erik Carlin, Sr. Cloud Architect, Mosso/Rackspace; and Steve Herrod, CTO, VMware - examined the risks and rewards of Cloud Computing for the enterprise.

From left, Jeremy Geelan, Conference Chair; Songnian Zhou, CEO of Platform Computing; Thorsten von Eicken, CTO of RightScale; Peter Nickolov, President & CTO of 3tera; Erik Carlin, Sr. Cloud Architect, Mosso/Rackspace; and Steve Herrod, CTO, VMware

Songnian Zhou compared the idea of clients moving to the cloud by comparing it to someone moving from a home to a hotel room.

Erick Carlin also pointed out the importance of being able to distinguish between this "cloud dream" and the actual reality of the cloud...what can actually be done with a single set of technology.

Then moderator Jeremy Geelan asked, "Where should customers start?"

"We don't want to be held hostage; we want to be able to have choices," responded Zhou. He described someone starting out on the cloud as starting out on a 10 year evolutionary period. To go step by step and in the end you will probably have your own hybrid experience.

Thorsten von Eicken believes we should jump right in. "Launch the application in the cloud today.  Join the successful companies in the cloud today." According to Peter Nickolov, your journey into the cloud really depends on where you want to go, what you want to do. "If you want to build your own cloud, get the platform installed on your own service and get started that way."

"Just try it, said Carlin. "The thing about the cloud is its lightweight entry and exit. It is easy to try in terms of practical application." For the enterprise: there is a great deal of importance in the support, having someone there to help you, enabling customers to use the cloud.

Stephen Herrod thinks the customer should use the cloud on their own terms.

Geelan then asked the panelists, "In the next five months between this conference and the next one - the 2nd International Cloud Computing Conference 2009 East - what do you see happening in the cloud?"

Having a larger breadth in vendors, having high-profile applications - global access to the cloud, having more cloud options, more discussions of open standards, and in general having a greater adoption of the cloud.

Sponsorship and Exhibit Opportunities for the 2nd International Cloud Expo - March 22-24, 2009, New York City
Sponsorship and Exhibit Opportunities Offered on a First-Come First-Served Basis. To inquire about sponsorship and exhibit opportunities please contact Carmen Gonzalez at 201-802-3021 or by email at events(at) Currently, a limited number of sponsorship and exhibition packages with multiple sponsorship discounts are available for the upcoming events.

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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