Marketwatch

This Week in Cloud April 14, 2017

Ryan Quackenbush

By Ryan Quackenbush4.14.17

Welcome to This Week in Cloud! This is a curated list of the top stories that were published during the past week pertaining to cloud computing, containers, the IoT, acquisitions, product releases, industry studies, and more.
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New Technology Is Built on a ‘Stack.’ Is That the Best Way to Understand Everything Else, Too?

By John Herrman, April 11th edition of NY Times
“…The stack isn’t just a handy concept for visualizing how technology works. For many companies, the organizing logic of the software stack becomes inseparable from the logic of the business itself. The system that powers Snapchat, for instance, sits on top of App Engine, a service owned by Google; to the extent that Snapchat even exists as a service, it is as a stack of different elements. “What you end up with is entire companies being built on a set of software tools and services,” says Yonas Beshawred, whose own company, StackShare, lets tech professionals publish their companies’ stacks and see what others are using, comparing technology the way hobbyists might compare gear. “You can think of them as Lego blocks.” A healthy stack, or a clever one, is tantamount (the thinking goes) to a well-structured company.”

Why Every Company Needs to Run Like a Software Company

By joe McKendrick, April 8th edition of ZDNet
“If software is eating the world, then every company is becoming a software company. It doesn’t matter if you manufacture tires, generate electricity, or provide health services. Software-driven competitors are ready to eat your lunch. That’s why every business needs to learn to get into the software business, providing new types of opportunities — and challenges — for IT managers and professionals, as well as for the business at large. Karl-Heinz Streibich, CEO of Software AG, has seen this evolution commencing among his own enterprise customers across the globe, as they begin the journey to digital, I sat down with him at last month’s CeBIT event to discuss the road ahead.”

Gartner Slashes Tech Spending Growth Forecast on Strong US Dollar, Shift to the Cloud

By Mike Wheatley, April 10th edition of SiliconANGLE
“Strong headwinds, including a rising U.S. dollar and an ongoing slowdown in the server market, have forced analyst firm Gartner Inc. to cut its forecast on global information technology spending. In its latest quarterly Worldwide IT Spending Forecast, Gartner pegs global spending at $3.46 trillion this year, which represents a 1.4 percent increase over the previous year. That increase was halved from Gartner’s original forecast, in part because the strong U.S. dollar makes exports more expensive in foreign markets. The second force at play is server sales, which continue to slide as companies opt to rent server space from cloud companies instead of purchasing their own machines. That’s dragging down overall data center spending, and while Gartner’s revised forecast here enters positive territory, it’s predicting only a 0.3 percent blip over 2016.”

Enterprises Get to Work in the Cloud

By Sharon Gaudin, April 10th edition of ComputerWorld
“Enterprises are finding all sorts of reasons to moved their data and business processes to the cloud. Capital One Financial Corp., for instance, is using the cloud as it advances from a financial services provider to a tech company with collaborative workspace, IT workers with new skill sets, fast-paced apps, and a focus on leading with cutting-edge technologies. The American Heart Association is working with Amazon Web Services to set up a cloud-based system where scientists from around the world can store, share and analyze research data. Making that data available in the cloud could accelerate research and lead to a cure for cardiovascular disease, which is the top cause of death worldwide. Finally, an AWS executive discusses the challenges facing big companies that want to migrate large, critical legacy workloads to the cloud.”

2017 Is The Year Service Providers Become King Of Cloud Services

By Louis Columbus, April 9th edition of Forbes
“…The results were presented by Microsoft executives and product leaders during their 13th Annual Cloud and Hosting Summit held in Bellevue, Washington last month. For additional details on the Microsoft Cloud and Hosting Summit, please see the event page on the Microsoft site here. The survey respondent base includes 1,738 IT decision makers distributed across 10 countries. The study’s goals include identifying business priorities, cloud adoption and buying intentions globally. Countries covered in the study span mature and emerging markets, including Australia, Brazil, Germany, India, Japan, Netherlands, Singapore, Turkey, the U.K. and the U.S. Please see page 117 for additional details regarding the methodology and demographics.”

The Road to Abstraction

By Stephen O’Grady, April 13th edition of RedMonk
“Computers are hard, which is why it’s no surprise that one of the long running trends over the history of the technology industry is abstraction. From machine code to Assembler to COBOL, even the earliest platform implementations have exhibited a tendency to progress incrementally away from low level primitives, which are non-intuitive to human beings and typically difficult and time consuming to learn. COBOL specifically, in fact, owes its existence to this trend. Facing high costs for programmers, a group convened in May of 1959 at the United States Department of Defense to discuss the creation of a computer language that “should make maximal use of English, be capable of change, be machine-independent and be easy to use, even at the expense of power.” The goals that led to the spec approval of COBOL in 1960 are the same that many platforms follow today. As a combination of Moore’s Law and the vast array of on demand infrastructure that it spawned have rendered performance less of an immutable tradeoff, they might even be more relevant in 2017 than they were in 1959. The most common way of making technologies easier to use has been abstraction. The further away a given platform gets from the underlying hardware that speaks in bits and bytes, the larger the number of humans that are capable of using it. This has been the fundamental assumption behind platforms from Microsoft’s Visual Basic to Salesforce’s Lightning.”

The Biggest Cloud Computing Leaders Are Devouring the Market

By Mike Wheatley, April 11th edition of SiliconANGLE
“The biggest cloud service providers such as Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp. are quickly taking over the business. Hyperscale cloud service operators’ market share is rapidly growing in several key cloud service markets, according to new data published by Synergy Research Group. Not surprisingly, in turn those cloud service markets themselves are also growing at extremely rapid rates, the data shows. Synergy defines hyperscale cloud service operators as those companies that operate hundreds of thousands of servers in their data center networks. It said 24 companies meet that definition of hyperscale, including the largest cloud service providers such as Amazon Web Services, Google Inc. and Microsoft.”

Kubernetes is King in Container Survey

By Serdar Yegulalp, April 12th edition of InfoWorld
“Kubernetes is in, container registries are a dime a dozen, and maximum container density isn’t the only thing that matters when running containers. Those are some of the insights gleaned by Sysdig, maker of on-prem and in-cloud monitoring solutions, from customers for how they’re using containers in 2017. Using a snapshot of Sysdig’s services that encompassed 45,000 running containers, Sysdig’s 2017 Docker Usage Report shows that container adoption is getting diversified by workload, and it covers some of the hot-or-not aspects of the new container stack.”

Application Container Use Surges, But Lack of Persistent Storage Irks More Companies

By Paul Gillin, April 12th edition of SiliconANGLE
“Investment in containers, the simple, portable software wrappers for applications, is growing rapidly, but a lack of support for persistent storage has arisen as the top challenge of companies adopting the technology. That’s according to the results of a new survey conducted by Portworx Inc. The survey of 491 information technology professionals found that two-thirds are running containers in production and 10 percent say their companies are investing more than $1 million annually on container-related license and usage fees, up from 4 percent last year. Nearly a third say their companies are spending more than a half-million dollars annually on containers. Companies are also stepping up their spending on personnel to use container technologies, with 13 percent saying they are investing more than $1 million annually in people.”

5 Reasons Developers Love Containers

By Paul Rubens, April 7th edition of InfoWorld
“Linux containers have been around for almost a decade, but it was only with the release of Docker four years ago that large numbers of developers began to adopt the technology. Now it seems that containers are everywhere and their popularity continues to rise. Containers have become such an important part of the IT landscape that server virtualization giants like VMware and Microsoft have had to go out of their way to accommodate them. VMware now offers a way to deploy, run and manage containers from within its vSphere virtualization infrastructure management system, while Microsoft — which has built Hyper-V server virtualization into its Windows Server product — has partnered with Docker to create Windows Server containers, and containerization support has been added to the Windows 10 kernel.”

How the CNCF Grapples with Continuous Integration and Deployment

By Alex Williams, April 10th edition of The New Stack
“For today’s episode of The New Stack Makers podcast, we sat down with Chris Aniszczyk, chief operating officer for the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, at CloudNativeCon/KubeCon Europe 2017 conference in Berlin last month. We spoke with Aniszczyk about the pros and cons of having two container runtimes, rkt and containerd, managed by the CNCF at the same time. Another topic of discussion was the ever-growing presence of continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD), and how those practices are evolving for the CNCF Technical Oversite Committee as it looks toward accepting future projects to the Foundation.”

Ever Heard of the Startup Deis? Well, Microsoft Certainly Did

By Cade Metz, April 10th edition of WIRED
“Microsoft is acquiring Deis, an open-source software company that helps businesses build and operate massive online applications atop Microsoft’s Windows Azure cloud and rival services from the likes of Google and Amazon. Though the startup is small and the purchase price is likely not that significant, the move underlines Microsoft’s commitment to the technologies that will define online infrastructure in the years to come—even though those technologies run counter to the business models that traditionally drove Microsoft. With its various open-source tools and help from cloud services like Azure, Deis aims to significantly simplify the rather complex way that modern applications are both designed and operated.”

Tracking the Explosive Growth of Open-Source Software

By Dharmesh Thakker, Max Schireson & Dan Nguyen-Huu; April 7th edition of TechCrunch
“Many of today’s hottest new enterprise technologies are centered around free, “open-source” technology. As a result, many big companies — from financial giants to retailers to services firms — are building their businesses around new, community-based technology that represents a sea change from the IT practices of the past. But how can corporate customers — and investors — evaluate all these new open-source offerings? How can they tell which projects (often strangely named: Ansible, Vagrant, Gradle) are generating the most customer traction? Which ones have the biggest followings among software developers, and the most potential to capture market share?”

Target: Open Source Leads to ‘Tighter Control’

By Mitch Wagner, April 10th edition of Light Reading
“America is seeing a retail meltdown, with even stalwart brands like Macy’s and Sears in bad shape. Target is looking to open source as a means of weathering the collapse. Amazon and other online shopping options are, of course, part of retail’s difficulties. But there’s more to it than that. While overall retail spending is growing steadily but slowly, retailers are hurt by the rise of e-commerce, oversupply of malls and a shift in discretionary spending away from buying and toward acquiring new experiences. Target is looking to technology as part of the solution to weathering the collapse, seeking to provide shoppers with customized experience across mobile, web and retail.”

How IBM Plans to be the “Undisputed Leader” of the Next Cloud Phase

By Stephanie Condon, April 10th edition of ZDNet
“After a decade of Amazon Web Services’ dominance in the cloud computing, IBM thinks the market is at a turning point. “It’s IBM’s goal to be the undisputed leader in enterprise cloud,” Willie Tejada, IBM’s chief developer evangelist, told ZDNet. Currently, AWS accounts for one third of the cloud infrastructure market — more than Google, Microsoft and IBM combined. Even so, Tejada argued we’ve entered a “new phase” in cloud computing that’s “no longer a race for size — it’s a race for value.” “We’ve been in the cloud cost phase, where people looked at it as a way to reduce costs and get some agility and elasticity in terms of their IT strategies,” he continued. “We believe this next phase is about innovation.” IBM is preparing for this phase by ramping up its engagement with developers, who hold growing clout when it comes to enterprise-decision making.”

Ryan Quackenbush
Ryan Quackenbush

Ryan Quackenbush is a corporate communications specialist at Apprenda whose roles include elements of writing, sales, marketing and research. His cooking is renowned, his record collection and library are extensive and, when not at Apprenda, he can usually be found rooting for the Mets or playing live music. You can follow him on Twitter at @RSQuackenbush.

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