2010 has seen an explosion in the number of articles, conferences, presentations about so called “cloud” computing, so much so that it has now become an overused term that is used by sales and marketing to pretty much try and sell anything.
So what is it?
Larry Ellison from Oracle Corporation has an amusing view that it is marketing hype and that everything is in the cloud.
IBM have advertisements about it.
Some describe the cloud as anything outside an organizations firewall.
At Eden Hartley Consulting we use the cloud for some applications and in house applications and services for others.
We use Google Apps for email, calendars, contact lists, simple documents and spreadsheets, especially when they need to be available anywhere and by multiple people, off site backup. We use Adobe ConnectNow for virtual presentations and collaboration. We host our web site in the cloud.
We don’t use the cloud for financials, human resources or more sensitive applications/documents.
So why the differentiation?
It is all about requirements, cost and time-frame.
Don’t be bamboozled when it comes to the cloud. Follow the basics:
1. Do your business case. What are you trying to achieve? What are the alternatives and likely costs and benefits?
2. Decide on your functional requirements. Some may be mandatory, others desirable.
3. Evaluate the market offerings. Some may be “cloud based” applications, services, infrastructure. Some will be on premise alternatives.
4. Decide. Weight up the satisfaction of requirements versus the costs.
Pretty simple stuff.
If you need help through this process, contact us. We have been doing “the cloud” for as long as anyone else, but our consultants have been managing IT projects to successful business conclusions for a lot longer than that.