This Week In Cloud: March 3, 2017

By Atos Apprenda Support

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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Cloud exits: How the M&A and IPO Markets Are Changing Expectations For Cloud Tech Companies

By Joe Floyd, February 26th edition of TechCrunch
“The year 2016 will go down in the history books as another year of impressive growth in the Enterprise cloud software space — and the numbers prove it. Last year there were 31 cloud software companies that were publicly held and commanded a market capitalization north of $1 billion. Together, they reported average annual revenue growth of nearly 25 percent, and saw their share valuations grow by more than 30 percent, beating the year’s performance of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the NASDAQ and the S&P 500. And the year just passed was notable for another reason: Cloud companies with businesses aimed at vertical industries became juicy buyout targets for large horizontal software companies.”

Edge Computing Will Blow Away the Cloud

By Clint Boulton, March 1st edition of Network World
“The ubiquitous cloud computing craze may not be long for this world if venture capitalist Peter Levine is right. The Andreessen Horowitz general partner said that as more computing capabilities move to so-called “edge” devices, including anything from driverless cars and drones to the boundless devices that make up the internet of things (IoT), the cloud will slowly evaporate. “A large portion of computation that gets done in the cloud today will return to the edge,” said Levine at the Wall Street Journal’s CIO Network event here Tuesday. Levine said the driverless car, whose 200-plus CPUs effectively make it a “data center on wheels,” is a prime example of an edge device whose computing capabilities must be self-contained. Levine said that an autonomous vehicle relying on the cloud for data would blow through stop signs and crash because of the latency associated with transmitting data from the car to the cloud.”

Cloud exits: How the M&A and IPO Markets Are Changing Expectations for Cloud Tech Companies

By Geof Wheelwright, February 27th edition of GeekWire
“Cloud technology companies have increasingly become acquisition targets rather than IPO candidates, according to a new research report. But investors and analysts say that could start to change in the year ahead. In its just-released “State of the Cloud Report 2017,” venture capital firm Bessemer Venture Partners (BVP) reported that the value of merger and acquisition activity in 2016 for cloud companies was almost four times the value of cumulative activity in 2015 (or any other year since 2009). BVP’s analysis showed that public cloud companies between 2009 and 2017 represented a total market value of $300 billion – and that 40 percent of that market capitalization has now been acquired. The biggest examples: the $26.2 billion acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft, the $9.3 billion purchase of NetSuite by Oracle, and SAP’s $8.3 billion swallowing of Bellevue-based travel and expense management powerhouse Concur.”

What The Rise Of Cloud Computing Means For IT Pros

By Allan Leinwand, February 28th edition of Forbes
“Twenty years ago, enterprise CIOs began using public cloud computing applications to ease the basic IT headache of maintaining and updating all systems and applications. Ever since, industry watchers have been predicting those CIOs would someday move most of their IT resources to the cloud, too. That day has come, and it’s creating significant changes to the roles and responsibilities of those CIOs and their IT organizations.My company recently commissioned a survey of more than 1,800 people evenly split between IT, Line-of-Business and DevOps from enterprises worldwide. As a cloud service provider, our objective was to determine when the pundits’ cloud computing predictions would come true. However, we did not expect to find that the shift had already occurred.”

Cloud-to-Client, Direct: Serverless Computing Reduces the Middle

By Joe McKendrick, February 26th edition of ZDNet
“One of the buzzwords to emerge over the past year is that of “serverless” computing or architecture, which, as the term suggests, involves the provisioning of key information technology resources to users without the fuss and muss of acquiring and activating additional hardware, which not only means servers, but disk space as well. Let the cloud vendors worry about the messy details of protocols, security, resource provisioning, processor speeds, and memory allocation, and focus on the applications business users need to run their organizations.”

Cloud Database Growth May Be Slowing As Lock-In Fears Loom

By Matt Asay, March 1st edition of TechRepublic
“Cloud databases may be to blame for NoSQL’s stalled momentum in 2016, but they may be seeing their own growth level off a bit. Using DB-Engines’ database popularity rankings, which amalgamate a range of datasets including Stack Overflow mentions and job postings, it’s clear that cloud databases keep leaping toward the world’s top-25 most popular databases (Amazon’s DynamoDB has already made it). It’s also clear, however, that they’re no longer getting there quite as fast. This doesn’t suggest we’re anywhere near the apex of cloud database adoption, but rather that developers may not be ready to fully give their infrastructure and data to the cloud providers.”

Private Cloud Is Very Popular Yet Nobody’s Doing It

By Mitch Wagner, March 1st edition of Light Reading
“Mobile World Congress 2017 — Reminiscent of the Yogi Berra quote about the restaurant that had become unpopular because so many people went there, Intel is seeing strong demand for on-premises enterprise cloud, even while conventional server component sales are declining. What’s going on? Enterprises are extremely interested in on-premises cloud, but not deploying it because it’s too difficult, Sandra Rivera, corporate vice president and general manager for the Intel Corp. network platforms group, tells Light Reading.”

A Hacker’s Guide to Kubernetes Networking

By Yaron Haviv, February 27th edition of The New Stack
“The platform we built at Iguazio is cloud native, using Docker-based microservices, etcd and home-grown cluster management. We are gradually migrating to the Kubernetes container orchestration engine, now that it has become more mature, leveraging its advanced functionality so that we can focus on delivering unique services. Unlike most cloud-native apps, ours is real-time. We drive extreme performance by using low-level direct access to network, storage, CPU and memory resources. This challenge with containers and Kubernetes isn’t trivial and has required some good, old fashioned hacking. This post is the first in a series. I’ll share how Kubernetes and the Container Networking Interface works with some hacking tricks to learn its internals and manipulate it. Future posts will cover high-performance storage and inter-process communications (IPC) tricks we use with containers.”

AWS’s Kubernetes Dilemma: It’s a Burden and a Pleasure

By Matt Asay, February 28th edition of The Register
“Amazon Web Services became the 800-pound cloud gorilla by catering to developers. It expects to own the container crown with the exact same strategy, touting convenience and productivity gains to users of its EC2 Container Service (ECS). There are signs, however, that this fight won’t be as simple, and that a cross-cloud container option like Kubernetes could be the spoiler to Amazon’s steady march. The AWS focus on developers is now established wisdom, but back when the company kicked off its baseline storage and compute cloud services, few took developers seriously. Call it prescience, call it dumb luck, but it was the absolute right strategy. For years competitors pooh-poohed AWS as being a toy for start-ups, insisting that no one would run mission-critical apps in a public cloud like AWS.”

With Azure Container Service, Microsoft Works to Make Container Management Boring

By Mary Branscombe, February 24th edition of The New Stack
“Earlier this week, Microsoft made the Kubernetes container orchestration service generally available on Azure Container Service, alongside the other predominant container orchestration engines Docker Swarm and Mesosphere’s Data Center Operating System (DC/OS). The move is one more step in building out the service, Kubernetes co-founder Brendan Burns told The New Stack. Burns moved from Google to Microsoft seven months ago to run ACS with the vision of turning it into “a really managed service” that can deliver not just tools for working with containers, but work as a whole Containers-as-a-Service (CaaS) platform.”

Docker’s New Releases: One For Devs, One For Ops

By Serdar Yegulalp, March 2nd edition of InfoWorld
“…The biggest change for both editions involves keeping them current and providing software revisions to users — or rather, how dev and ops will get revisions. For CE users, updates will come from two channels: a monthly Edge release channel for developers who want to play with the most up-to-date features and a quarterly release channel for operations folks. Meanwhile, EE users will receive only the quarterly releases, each of which is supported for one year. Hotfixes will also be backported as needed. The new changes aim to combine the best of both worlds. Those who want to move fast and break things can use the Edge releases, akin to the Canary or unstable build channel for Google Chrome. Those who want to concentrate on building can stick with the quarterly releases.”

Google Cloud Spanner Enters With a Splash

By Donald Feinberg, February 27th edition of the Gartner Blog
“Last week, Google launched its internal Cloud Spanner DBMS into a public beta. Claiming to be both strongly consistent (like a relational DBMSs) and horizontally scalable (like a nonrelational or “NoSQL” DBMSs), Cloud Spanner’s internal use has given Google time to exploit unique physical characteristics of its cloud. The great weakness of distributed DBMS offerings has been their inability to offer both consistency and performance across broad scale-out architectures. The CAP Theorem demonstrated that any system subject to network partitioning must prefer either availability or consistency and sacrifice the other. Spanner promises to address this problem. One features relies on Google’s control of the network, which has been optimized to reduce the number and duration of partition events. Google claims to deliver five 9s (99.999%) of availability in its internal network. Like its competitors, such claims will need to be backed by contracted SLAs.”

Google Cloud Adds Skylake, Fueling Performance Wars

By George Leopold, February 24th edition of EnterpriseTech
“As part of an ongoing effort to differentiate its public cloud services, Google made good this week on its intention to bring custom Xeon Skylake chips from Intel Corp. to its Google Compute Engine. Google announced plans to incorporate the next-generation Intel server chips into its public could last November. On Friday (Feb. 24), Urs Hölzle, Google’s senior vice president for cloud infrastructure, said the Skylake upgrade would deliver a significant performance boost for demanding applications and workloads ranging from genomic research to machine learning.”

How Cisco Wants to Become the Switzerland of the Cloud

By Brandon Butler, February 27th edition of Network World
“After years of juggling with different strategies of how to pursue the cloud computing market, Cisco now has what it believes will be a winning one: Become a so-called Switzerland of the cloud. Cisco is not spending billions of dollars to build a public cloud to compete with Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform. “That ship has sailed,” says Fabio Gori, head of cloud marketing at Cisco. Instead, Cisco wants its existing customers, and new ones, to think of the company as an independent arbiter of cloud resources. If customers want to use public or private cloud, Cisco will help them manage those resources. As customers look to deploy an Internet of Things program, secure mobile devices or get advanced analytics on their infrastructure or applications, Cisco will have a platform for them too. Cisco’s cloud strategy, it says, will work across multiple public and private cloud environments – making it a neutral player in the battle of the clouds.”

Amazon Web Services Outage Reveals Critical Lack of Redundancy Across the Internet

By Nat Levy, February 28th edition of GeekWire
“The digital snow day is over, as Amazon Web Services has fixed the issues with its Simple Storage Service, or S3 for short, that crippled significant chunks of the internet Tuesday. Starting a little after 9:30 a.m. Pacific time Tuesday, and lasting close to five hours, the S3 cloud storage service started experiencing “high error rates.” This outage knocked out access to a litany of websites and apps that run on AWS, including but not limited to Expedia, Slack, Medium, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The outage even temporarily affected the AWS service health dashboard, which displays outages and events.”

Researcher Sees Amazon Facing New Challenges As Cloud Market Fragments

By Bert Latamore, March 1st edition of SiliconANGLE
“Amazon Web Services is growing at an incredible pace, driven mainly by greenfield software development both by enterprises and by software-as-a-service startups. That growth shows no signs of slowing, but the cloud market is expanding in two significant new directions in which AWS faces stiff competition, writes Wikibon Chief Research Officer Peter Burris. The first of these is the migration of legacy workloads, particularly those built on a database management systems such as Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle or IBM DB2. Enterprises are starting to move their existing workloads to the cloud, and Wikibon expects this to become a significant growth market. Burris quotes one chief information officer as saying he has been directed to move 40 percent of his existing workloads to cloud platforms, and that goal cannot be reached without migrating some core legacy DBMS-based applications.”

SAP Cloud Platform, Nothing Fishy About A Clever Cloud

By Adrian Bridgwater, February 27th edition of Forbes
“SAP used its appearance at Mobile World Congress this year to attempt to explain and validate what the firm calls a more intelligent cloud platform. This is clearly a theme; the Germany-headquartered US-centric software company has also recently applied the ‘intelligent’ label to its ERP function. But what does ‘intelligence’ mean really, honestly, actually mean in cloud computing terms when big vendors sprinkle the term around as liberally as steak seasoning on everything they serve up?”

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