Some Cloud Thoughts on a Clear and Sunny Day

Cloud Computing is a deployment model and cloud computing is a business model.  Cloud computing is not some silver bullet magical thing.  It's not even easy *gasp* sometimes.

As a deployment model cloud computing can it is simply summed up as on-demand, self-service, reliable, and low to no capital costs services for the consumer.

As a business model it is summed up as, again, low to no long term capital costs (and the associated depreciation) and pay as you go service provider pricing models.  In reality these are mountains of micro transactions aggregated into monthly and yearly billing cycles.  For example, I spent $0.015 for a small compute instance w/ a cloud infrastructure provider because I just needed an hour of an Ubuntu 10.04 linux machine to test a quick software install combination and update a piece of documentation.  I'll get a bill for that at the end of the month.  Get this...

An hour of compute time costs me 3.3 times LESS than a piece of hubba bubba chewing gum cost me at $0.05 (one time use only) over 30 years ago. #cloud

Enterprises and service providers are learning very quickly from the how the early public cloud vendors how to do things differently and often more efficiently.  It was well summed up in the Federal CTO's announcement of the government application cloud.  Basically, that we saw that consumers could get IT services for orders of magnitude less than we could.  So, we're fixing that by emulating what the companies that service the consumers are doing. Smart.  Bechtel did this exact same thing years ago when analyzing that the cost per GB of storage for Amazon was orders of magnitude less than Bechtel could and asked the very important question why and then answered it very well.
A couple of years ago now I helped found a company called nScaled.   nScaled does, business continuity as a service.  It is only possible with the resources, at the price, and at the speed we have moved because of following cloud computing deployment and business models.  It would not have been possible for us to build this business when we did and the way we have without these models.  
In March 2008 I called cloud computing a renaissance.

It is my opinion that Cloud Computing is a technology architecture evolution that, when properly applied to business problems, can enable a business revolution. I've been saying this for a while but in recent weeks I have actually come to prefer the term renaissance over revolution.

Today, two years into a startup that uses the raw power of cloud computing deployment and business models across the board to enable new ways for companies to consume disaster recovery and business continuity solutions I can say without a doubt that I believe that cloud computing is a renaissance more than ever before!


Augmented Reality Becoming Reality

I thought it was time for another off-topic post.  If you know me, you know I have been following VR/AR for years and years.  I blame TRON, Star Wars, and any number of science fiction authors.  Someday, I don't know yet how or when I will get to work on this stuff full time.  But, in any event here are a couple of recent updates that got my attention for various reasons.

Here is an AR business card that mashes up with Twitter.


and more...

As soon as you can see these augmented reality images easier without a phone, webcam and a computer, or other unwieldy device that isn’t supremely geeky the world is going to change a great deal very fast.  Today those


devices still look kind of like this:

But, that's changing very fast.  Here is a contact lens that was recently "installed" on an unsuspecting little bunny rabbit.  It's a low resolution heads up display.



Then, of course, there is actually the concept of controlling things virtually and even in the physical world through a combination of AR and monitoring brain waves.

Neurosky is developing tools to translate feelings (brain waves) into actions.  What if you were to:

  • Hook it to your car cruise control
  • Get the will it blend guy to wire this up to his blender, will it mind blend?
  • An augmented reality enabled version of the little engine that could where the kid actually participates in getting the train up the hill
  • An alarm clock you CAN'T turn off until you are awake and "think" the damn thing off
  • Obvious implications for additional controls for video/console games
  • A mind controlled vibrator (so obvious)
  • A lawn mower. Lawn Mower man 2.0.
  • A vacuum cleaner
  • Bank Lock boxes that require you to be calm to open them
  • Drunk/Sleepy driving accident/construction prevention (what are a drunks brain waves like anyway?) - Car says your asleep and calls you a cab.

Depending on how difficult it is to learn to use this device of future revisions of it, it clearly has many possible uses. Why just calm? Why not also allow it to do things based on other states of mind like rage, excitement, happiness, sadness. That could be interesting!

As is often the case porn, marketing, and gaming will lead the way.  AR Strippers have arrived as well:


Beyond Reality - AR Gaming is developing interesting AR games.


While the AR strippers are entertaining I suppose, the reason it is interesting is because if you imaging using a live feed in real time you see quickly that the future of video conferencing and phone calls in general could present a lot more of you than just your face and voice.  In the future, it'll feel to the people that see you in their spaces real and virtual that you are there.  Sometime well after that, it'll feel like you are there too.  But, that's much further out probably becuase integrating senses other than vision and audio is quite a bit more challenging at the moment.  We just don't understand the brain well enough yet.

Lastly, if you haven't picked up and read Rainbows End you might just want to as it could be a guide to how things are going to work in the not so distant future in several ways.