Marketwatch

This Week In Cloud: March 17, 2017

Ryan Quackenbush

By Ryan Quackenbush3.17.17

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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Miscue Calls Attention to Amazon’s Dominance in Cloud Computing

By Nick Wingfield, March 12th edition of The NY Times
“There have been many opportunities to consider how crucial Amazon has become to the smooth operation of the internet over the past few years. The most recent involved a case of fat fingers… While would-be competitors snoozed, the internet retailer tiptoed into the business technology market over the past decade, becoming the dominant force in cloud computing. Its computing business, Amazon Web Services, hauled in $12.2 billion in revenue last year from customers ranging from Netflix to the C.I.A. Amazon’s leading position has come with side effects. Its two biggest rivals — Microsoft and Google — are asleep no more. They and other technology companies have preached the benefits of working with multiple cloud providers — the kind of marketing message one would expect from underdogs in a category that could one day engulf the huge market for business software and hardware.”

SUSE Acquires HPE’s Cloud Assets

By Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, March 12th edition of ZDNet
“HPE and SUSE, a top Linux distributor, have a complex relationship. First, HPE spun and merged its non-core software assets with Micro Focus. Micro Focus owns SUSE, a major Linux provider. Now, SUSE has finished acquiring cloud assets of HPE’s OpenStack Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Cloud Foundry Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Stackato, HPE’s Cloud Foundry implementation. Here’s how it fits together. SUSE will use its new assets to expand its OpenStack program, speeding up the company’s entry into Cloud Foundry’s growing Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) market.”

Docker to Donate its Container Runtime, ontainerd, to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation

By Joab Jackson, March 15th edition of The New Stack
“Docker plans to donate its containerd container runtime to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to organizing a set of open source container-based cloud-native technologies. In December, Docker released as open source the code for containerd, which provides a runtime environment for Docker containers. By open sourcing this component of the Docker stack, the company wanted to assure users, partners, and other actors in the container ecosystem that the core container component would remain stable, and that the community would have a say in its advancement. Designed as an independent component, containerd can be embedded into third-party systems to provide core container capabilities. Now the company has taken the next step in assuring the independence of containerd, by donating it to a third-party organization. Specifically, Docker will propose to the CNCF Technical Oversight Committee (TOC) for containerd to become a CNCF project.”

Google Cloud Sharpens Its Enterprise Strategy

By Eric Knorr, March 13th edition of InfoWorld
“Google first announced its plan to become a top cloud provider for the enterprise in June 2012. But turning an inward-focused, engineering-driven company inside out to cater to enterprise customers has been a struggle. By most estimates, Google Cloud remains a distant No. 3 behind AWS and Microsoft Azure. Last week’s Google Cloud Next conference may mark a turning point. At 10,000 attendees, the three-day event was more than four times the size of last year’s conference. A change in tone emerged: Google spent more time actively reaching out to enterprises than it did flogging its technical superiority. Instead of SnapChat or Evernote, real enterprise customers waltzed across the stage, including Colgate, Disney, HSBC, Schlumberger, and Verizon. Plus Google announced a partnership with the fusty enterprise software vendor SAP, which will run its in-memory HANA analytics database on Google Cloud.”

Cloudera Plans to Launch Data Science Software, Cloud Services

By Jordan Novet, March 13th edition of VentureBeat
“Big data software company Cloudera will announce new data science software later this week at the Strata + Hadoop World conference in San Jose, VentureBeat has learned. The company will launch Data Science Workbench software that helps data scientists and data engineers work together and integrates with Python, R, H2O, and other tools, two sources familiar with the matter told VentureBeat. This follows Cloudera’s 2016 acquisition of startup Sense, which built a data science collaboration tool. Cloudera was keen to build data science software before the Sense acquisition but ultimately ended up acquiring rather than releasing its own tool, Charles Zedlewski, Cloudera’s senior vice president of products, told VentureBeat in an interview.”

Mesosphere’s DC/OS Adds More One-Click Integrations and Better Support For Machine Learning Workloads

By Frederic Lardinois , March 14th edition of TechCrunch
“Mesosphere is launching an updated version of its DC/OS platform for running microservices and big data applications in private and public clouds. Version 1.9 of DC/OS is a significantly bigger release than the version number indicates at first glance. With this update, DC/OS users can now deploy over 100 services with a single click. Some of the new services the company added in this release include Alluxio for high-speed distributed storage access, NoSQL database Couchbase, distributed database service DataStax Enterprise, analytics service Elastic Search, and the Redis in-memory data structure store. All of these new integrations are based on the DC/OS Partner SDK. As the company notes, this means it’s now relatively easy (though still not completely trivial) to build a complete data services infrastructure within days.”

SAP Is Now Hosting VMs In Its Cloud. Just Don’t Call It HANA

By Simon Sharwood, March 14th edition of The Register
“SAP probably isn’t high on the list of companies you’d contemplate as a host of a virtual machine in the cloud, but the company’s just doubled down on a service that offers just that. The company’s not trying to be a general-purpose cloud platform. Instead, the offering is part of the recently-re-named SAP Cloud Platform. Previously known as SAP HANA Cloud Platform, the company changed the name because the product has nothing to do with HANA: there’s nothing in-memory about the offering. Indeed, the company has figured out that it slapped the “HANA” name on too many things, deterring those who worried they weren’t ready for in-memory computing=.”

Many Enterprises Not Ready For ‘Microservices Tsunami’

By Joe McKendrick, March 12th edition of ZDNet
“Most IT operations teams today are “ill-prepared for the rise of microservices,” which threaten to overwhelm their shops. That’s the word from XebiaLabs’ Sunil Mavadia, who recently cautioned that many current-day IT systems may be overwhelmed as microservices are poised to “unleash an application release tsunami.” The good news, he adds, is that there is still time to adapt, as we’re only in the early stages of microservices adoption, so there’s still time to get ahead of the wave. Still, Mavadia warns, with the accelerating demand for digital capabilities, “the rate at which applications will be released and updated is about to exponentially increase as more and more organizations are moving to embrace microservices architectures.” More applications and services are needed, and they need to be constantly updated as well.”

An Over Emphasis on Innovation?

By Hank Barnes, March 14th edition of Gartner
“Technology is all about innovation. It is almost impossible to find any tech or service provider that does not tout their ability to innovate. Innovation is exciting, new and different. But is innovation the key to success for tech companies? I’m not sure. Innovation certainly plays a role, but buyers don’t always want what new. In fact, in our recently updated Enterprise Personality Profile research (Gartner clients can read the report here), our findings illustrated a continued reality–only roughly 25% of the enterprise population views their approach as being dynamic in terms of technology motivation, where they are truly open to new, different technology. This is consistent with market adoption models that highlight that only a small percentage of the market adoption comes from innovators and early adopters. The money is in the mainstream.”

The Future Of Advanced-Edge Computing Is Actually In Autonomous Cars

By Bob O’Donnell, March 14th edition of Re/Code
“These days, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that anything really important in tech only happens in the cloud. After all, that’s where all the excitement, investment and discussion seems to be. And there are indeed innumerable efforts to not only build software for the cloud, but also to use the cloud to completely reinvent companies or even industries. As important as these cloud-based developments may be, however, they shouldn’t supercede many of the equally exciting capabilities being brought to life on the edge of today’s networks. While these endpoints, or edge devices, used to be limited to smartphones, PCs and tablets, there’s now an explosion of new options for creating, manipulating, viewing, analyzing and storing data. From VR headsets to smart digital assistants to intelligent tractors, the range of edge devices is enormous and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Companies like Intel, Nvidia, Qualcomm and ARM, as well as system integrators like Harman, all see connected cars as essentially “the” computing device of the next decade or so.”

Out Of The Gate, Health And Research Apps Face-Plant

By Beth Mole, March 15th edition of ARS Technica
“There are three billion smartphones bouncing inside pockets and bags around the world. Their owners are often within arm’s reach 24-7. With such ubiquity, constant usage, and connectivity, researchers have publicly drooled over the potential for mobile devices to become gushing conduits of health information. They could wirelessly and effortlessly provide data on patients’ symptoms, the success or failure of new treatments, and the progression of diseases—streamlining clinical trials, research, and personalized care. The potential is there. But reality is not, according to a study published this week in Nature Biotechnology. Tracking the effectiveness of an asthma health app created using Apple’s ResearchKit, researchers reported problems with participant selection bias, extremely low participant retention, missing data, and data security.”

Running Kubernetes in Kubernetes

By Sebastian Scheele, March 15th edition of The New Stack
“There definitely is some magic around the open-source Kubernetes container orchestration engine. For quite a few years, containers have been a cool concept but broad deployment has proved to be difficult. Managing inter-container networking, persistent storage and auto-scaling for hundreds of containers manually were just not possible, and a really good container platform was not in sight. This changed when Google released the Kubernetes project to the open source community in 2014. Immediately, networking, storage, auto-scaling, alerting, and many other standard infrastructure features for containers could now be managed automatically within Kubernetes clusters, combined with extremely low downtime and great performance. Running containers at scale and utilizing distributed infrastructures became a viable option for many companies.”

Why Splunk Keeps Beating Open Source Competitors

By Matt Asay, March 15th edition of InfoWorld
“All essential data infrastructure these days is open source. Or rather, nearly all — Splunk, the log analysis tool, remains stubbornly, happily proprietary. Despite a sea of competitors, the best of them open source, Splunk continues to generate mountains of cash. The question is why. Why does Splunk exist given that “no dominant platform-level software infrastructure has emerged in the last 10 years in closed-source, proprietary form,” as Cloudera co-founder Mike Olson has said? True, Splunk was founded in 2003, 10 years before Olson’s declaration, but the real answer for Splunk’s continued relevance may come down to both product completeness and industry inertia.”

Containers: The Smart Person’s Guide

By Jack Wallen, March 13th edition of TechRepublic
“Containers have revolutionized the way many people view IT and the deployment of apps and services. But what exactly are containers? Containers are self-contained apps and services that IT admins can easily deploy and update. In many instances and applications, containers make things easier and more reliable and secure. This primer is a quick way to get up to speed on containers. We’ll update this “living” guide periodically when news and methods pertaining to containers are released.”

How The Cloud Can Kickstart Your Business

By David Gordon, March 14th edition of The Register
“So, you’re a developer with a great tech idea. You have a vision for a world-beating product, perhaps even one that defines a new category. But the journey from idea to execution is long, painful, and often expensive. The cloud can help developers realize their dreams while minimizing capital outlay. Here’s how. In the early days and even into maturity, startups are experimenting. They are testing assumptions, prototyping new features and ideally looking at usage patterns to see how these features are being received. The technology to support this cycle of innovation can be one of the most critical costs for a tech startup. Developing, testing and deploying these experiments isn’t cheap. No startup wants to buy and maintain its own server technology while it churns new ideas. Infrastructure is a distraction for these companies.”

Returning to a Cloudy Software World

By Craig Matsumoto, March 13th edition of Light Reading
“Some reporter I am. I spent nearly a week at Mobile World Congress, and the hottest rumor I heard was the one about me. Turns out it was true, too. After nearly four years away, I’ve returned to Light Reading as of Monday. It’s good to see some familiar faces. (Dan, Carol, Sarah, Paul, Alan, Ray — and everybody at Heavy Reading — hello! Good to be back!) They’ve done a lot with the place since I left. The staff is bigger and the ecosystem is broader. As you know better than I do, we have Mitch Wagner and Scott Ferguson running the Enterprise Cloud News community, which soft-launched today. And we have Curtis Franklin working on security, a beat that never got its due when I tried my hand at it. That’s good to see, because our scope should widen as the industry changes. I left Light Reading to focus more on the world of software — software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV), particularly — and those technologies are now part of the mainstream conversation.”

Things Are Different In Cloud Computing, But How?

By Adrian Bridgwater, March 13th edition of Forbes
“There’s this thing called cloud computing, okay we already know that, but how do you actually do it? Key vendors in this space talk about ‘migration to cloud’ as is it were some technical coming of age, but we rarely hear enough about the guts of what happens when we decide to go cloudwards. Things happen differently in the cloud model. Software applications have a different shape i.e. they can no longer just look back inside the system (desktop PC or laptop) that they run on for resources. Basically this is because that machine isn’t there any more in the virtualized datacenter powered world of cloud. Aspects of your cloud ‘app’ like memory run on a fundamentally different architectural model i.e. when your app needs more memory, it has to be aware of where it can get it from within the realms of the datacenter machines that it runs on and is connected to.”

Transforming Your Infrastructure With Cloud Services

By David Gordon, March 10th edition of The Register
“Infrastructure as a Service can make your computing operations more scalable and agile. It may also be the first step to something larger. If you’re considering a move to cloud computing, then you’re not alone. An increasing number of organizations are taking advantage of its scalability and agility. The first step for many is to begin using Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). Here are some things to consider when testing it out, and some next steps that will help you to mature your cloud computing environment. Cloud computing adoption is moving too quickly to ignore. The Canadian federal government is leading by example, having already invested heavily in cloud through its Shared Services model, and other organizations are following suit.”

Cloud Computing Is The New Normal: Is It Time To Use It For Everything?

By Mark Samuels, March 13th edition of ZDNet
“On-demand IT has reached a tipping point and organisations of all sizes and sectors are using cloud computing services to run and develop their businesses. How far can organisations go in terms of pushing applications on-demand and how important is the context within which a firm operates? But where does the cloud go next and what are some of the interesting use cases that will help take cloud to the next level? Four business and tech leaders discuss what the cloud now means for their businesses.”

Ryan Quackenbush
Ryan Quackenbush

Ryan Quackenbush is the Advocacy Programs Manager at Apprenda. 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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