• IDG Contributor Network: Is there any stopping the AWS juggernaut?

     

    For those who haven’t caught up on Amazon’s recent quarterly financial results, they were surprising for a number of reasons. Amazon has long been seen as the perfect example of a company pouring its money back into growth and foregoing profits for growth. This quarter was, however, different for Amazon, with the company posting only its second-ever quarterly profit. Total net sales for the three months ending on June 30 were $23.19 billion, a 19.9% year-on-year gain that blew away financial analysts’ estimates.

    But for those of us who focus on Amazon’s Web Services cloud division, the fact that this quarter was only the second time that Amazon broke out AWS revenues was the cause for delicious anticipation. And we were not disappointed. For the quarter, AWS generated $1.82 billion in revenue, a full 81.5% higher than in the second quarter of 2014. The division’s operating income was $391 million, a fairly staggering (given its already high level) 400-odd percent annual gain.

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  • IDG Contributor Network: Why 1&1 deployed SolidFire’s flash storage for its new cloud servers

     

    1&1, a subsidiary of United Internet, manages over 19 million domain names worldwide as well as running over 70,000 servers for its cloud hosting business. The company has created a new generation of cloud services that it hopes will help them j…

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  • IDG Contributor Network: As Citrix CEO is set to retire, product carnage looks ready to begin

     

    Yesterday, Citrix CEO Mark Templeton announced that he plans to retire once a successor is announced. While a CEO retiring is moderately interesting, the subtext to all of this is more so. Elliott Management, the activist shareholder that has a track record of agitating within other technology companies (most notably pushing EMC to spin off its VMware subsidiary) also announced that its partner, Jesse Cohn, is joining the Citrix board and that another independent board member is to be appointed by mutual agreement between Elliott and itself.

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  • IDG Contributor Network: Puppet ups the ante to remain relevant in a rapdily changing world

     

    We are at something of a transition point when it comes to cloud infrastructure. Only a few years ago, it was generally accepted that customers were looking for tools that would allow them to automate server management simply and repeatably. A number of vendors arose that were focused on this problem space – their solutions were all about creating templates or recipes for server types, and helping organizations quickly and easily deploy and manage those servers. Vendors Chef and Puppet are perhaps the two best-known of these sorts of vendors.

    But the world is changing. Organizations are increasingly looking to microservices as the future of their infrastructure. Instead of deploying servers per se, organizations want to manage a rapidly increasing selection of disparate services. The parallel rise of containerization in general, and Docker in particular, has helped this approach grow to dominance.

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  • IDG Contributor Network: CliQr rolls out a new version of its CloudCenter platform

     

    CliQr is a vendor that offers broad cloud-management solutions. The company has existed for a few years, and has had a couple of changes of direction in that time. Its focus now, however, is firmly on delivering a solution that helps organizations wrap the entirety of their infrastructure with a control fabric. The reasons for this focus are simple to understand: organizations increasingly use a plethora of different approaches towards their infrastructure. They might have some mainframe applications, some on-premises apps, some client/server technologies, and finally some applications built in “cloud native” ways and leveraging public or private clouds. While this diversity of infrastructure gives organizations great flexibility, it also increases complexity. Thus, a solution that manages the breadth or an organizations’ infrastructure becomes increasingly attractive.

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  • IDG Contributor Network: Leveraging the Internet of Things to make seaports safer

     

    The IoT is perhaps the biggest source of press-release hyperbole in the IT industry at the moment. I see dozens of press releases a week and at least half of them would include reference to predictions by analyst firms like IDC and Gartner, which have predicted tens of billions of connected devices over the next few years. While the numbers and the timing of these predictions always differ, the volume with which they’re articulated is always set to maximum.

    Unfortunately, despite a plethora of examples of these statistics being used in press releases, there is a sad dearth of great case studies of how the IoT is actually being utilized today. One came over my desk recently that is interesting for a couple of reasons. First, because it is a proof point about this sensor-driven solution but, more importantly, it is a great example of technology being applied to a very old and established industry.

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  • IDG Contributor Network: Akana, formerly SOA Software, enters competitive API analytics market

     

    Akana used to be known as SOA software. So why does an existing vendor with market awareness change its name?

    Well, unfortunately for SOA software, the acronym SOA is seen as very much an old-school approach towards technology. SOA stands for service-oriented architecture and refers to an architectural pattern in software design in which application components provide services to other components via a communications protocol, typically over a network. Unfortunately, SOA was developed before the rise of easily created and consumed APIs (application programming interfaces…sorry for all the acronyms). APIs have pretty much rendered SOA obsolete, and that means SOA Software was a wholly unsatisfactory name for the company.

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  • IDG Contributor Network: 3 cloud industry groups announced this week. How do they affect each other?

     

    Yesterday Rackspace and Intel jointly announced the “OpenStack Innovation Center.” OpenStack is, of course, the open source cloud operating system launched five or so years ago by Rackspace and NASA. Since then it has grown up and now has its own foundation, massive industry buy-in and robust, stable code. So what are these two vendors doing that will change anything? According to the companies, the innovation center will provide two 1,000-node clusters to test out new features geared for large, enterprise deployments.

    Bear in mind that in the past week we have had a number of initiatives announced or expanded. We had the Cloud Native computing Forum, a Google-initiated program which itself has pretty broad industry buy-in. It is, at face value, focused on increasing the consistency of management platforms for cloud-native applications. It wants to make it easier for organizations to build, deploy, and manage cloud-scale apps. The subtext (and, yes, there generally is a subtext) is that Google knows full well that Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the king of the crowd in the public cloud and it sees the Kubernetes open source container management system as a sort of Trojan Horse that will help it gain some momentum in the field. It was noticeable that AWS wasn’t a part of the CNCF announcement. If anyone needed proof of AWS’ dominance, and Google’s motivation for doing this, here’s some: in Amazon’s second quarter, AWS net sales were up 81.4% to $1.824 billion from $1.005 billion for the corresponding year-ago quarter.

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  • IDG Contributor Network: Cazena launches a big data-as-a-service…service

     

    Everyone agrees that we’re swimming in a sea of data that only continues to grow. Everyone agrees that in only a few short years we will see a massive growth in the number of different devices that are connected to the internet. No one disputes tha…

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  • How Ryanair is continually evolving its mobile strategy

     

    Monolithic legacy airline management systems can make it difficult for carriers to deliver innovative mobile solutions for their customers. With all the important data locked up in software that is hard to access, it makes life difficult for those who want to be creative with that data. So it’s always interesting to take the time to talk…

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