Cloudy in New York!

This year for the second year in a row I presented a talk at Cloud Expo in New  York.  This time I had one of the two General (full-audience) sessions on the first day. 

Cloud Expo

My talk: Patterns for Cloud Computing was attended by about 800 in the main presentation hall and overflow room. 

Using the artifice of Jim, a typical software architect, we discussed his quandary in first understanding the cloud and second in determining if the cloud could be of any value to him in solving his company’s business problems. 

The talk began with with an architectural model of the cloud as defined and popularized by the National Institute of Standards (NIS). This included discussing the 5 Essential characteristics, 3 Service models and 4 Deployment models defined by NIST.

We then covered four popular design patterns for taking advantage of the cloud, illustrating them all with Windows Azure.  These patterns were in the area of using the cloud for:

  • Scalability
  • Compute
  • Storage
  • Inter-company communications

Judging from the number of attendees that kept me talking about the cloud for a half-hour after the presentation and the number of business cards that I handed out it is pretty clear that there is an incredible amount of interest in  leveraging the cloud in general and Windows Azure in particular.

You can download the presentation deck from my SkyDrive here.

On Tuesday I got to be on the CTO Power Panel with several other panelists from companies such as: Eucalyptus, McAfee,, Dell and Voxtel. The subject of the panel was Has Cloud Computing Changed Enterprise IT Forever and for Always?

Here is a picture of me hogging the stage. Smile


One of the questions that was asked was about Clouds and Open Source and I responded with all the things that we are doing to support Open Source in our Cloud: Providing a PHP SDK, an Eclipse Plug in, and even enabling the use of Apache Tomcat in Windows Azure. The latter was even a surprise to some of the panelists. Smile 

I also told them how we have donated our Hypervisor to the Open Cloud Stack initiative.  One of the panelists was from (one of the leaders of that initiative) and he confirmed that was indeed the case. 

Another question was on how the Cloud Changes things and I responded with three things:

  1. The cloud gives enterprises another dimension that they can use to more rapidly solve the business problems of their companies and allow them to better align IT with business. (I mentioned IT Doesn’t matter and how IT is still recovering from that.  It got a lot of laughs.
  2. The change to an Opex Model from a Capex model (that got lots of nods),
  3. Scalability: Not having to buy capacity in large chunks. Being able to match capacity with demand.

Video from the panel should be posted shortly as well.