by September 10, 2010 0 comments



Gartner predicts the worldwide market for cloud computing will reach USD 68.3
billion in 2010 itself, and will reach USD 148.8 billion by 2014. IDC predicts
that 10% of organizational IT budgets will go in favor of adopting the public
cloud, and according to Forrester, 44% of the organizations want to move the
private cloud way. If these figures are to be believed, then we’re far from
being well prepared for it. Currently, there are too many announcements being
made related to cloud computing, with just about every vendor worth its name
hopping onto the bandwagon. This is creating more confusion than clarity amongst
prospective cloud computing adopters.

So to eliminate all confusion and make India a global leader in the cloud
computing space, what’s required is a global delivery model for bringing out
better, faster, and cheaper cloud computing products and services. One way to
make this possible would be for the industry to come together and bring out a
set of best practices by using effective project management techniques. This was
essentially the objective of a conference conducted by PMI in Bangalore on
August 7, 2010. It was the first one in a multi-city series, which brought
together thought leaders from the cloud computing vendors space.

“The Indian govt. has incurred losses in excess of Rs 50,000 Cr for all
their projects above Rs 25 Cr+, just due to project delays”, explains Raj
Kalady, MD, PMI India

 

V Srinivas Rao (VSR), Chairman PMI Team India sensitizes the audience about
the event’s theme: Journey to transform India into a global leader in cloud
computing by leveraging project management.

Developing new cloud computing products, apps, and services
There are a lot of questions that come to mind while adopting cloud
computing based products and applications. These need to be addressed in a
logical way, so that the future products that get developed on this technology
eliminate these complaints. Thought leaders in the cloud computing space came
together in a panel discussion and gave relevant examples from their own areas.

Cloud aware Web apps: Shouvick Mukherjee of Yahoo! India R&D gave
examples of how they were developing cloud computing based web apps for their
business. An interesting example of how it should work on the web involves a
cricket match. When the match is live, there’s heavy traffic on the site,
requiring very high hardware utilization, but when the match is over, hardware
utilization drops drastically. A traditional app would take hours to make this
transition, which is why it’s important to develop a “cloud aware” web app.

Requirement analysis changes: Hemanth Dattatreya of HP said that the
whole requirements analysis process changes with cloud computing. He compared
the IT industry to what the electricity industry was when it started. Each
organization generated its own electricity, and there were multiple types of
voltages (AC/DC), different levels of current, etc. Gradually, electricity was
centralized, and standards emerged, so people would simply plug devices into
wall outlets without worrying about which generator was being used at the
back-end, where it was located, etc. It only mattered that the electrical or
electronic device should work, and the user would get billed for the electricity
it consumed. Cloud Computing is taking the IT industry in a similar direction,
with things getting centralized. So users don’t have to worry about the
underlying hardware, specs, etc. They just get a platform on which their
applications would work, irrespective of the scale. They would get billed
according to the application usage.

Cloud Computing for govt: Ashok Srinivasan of Microsoft spoke of
building a Cloud Computing platform for the Indian govt, among other things.
Centralize your developer resources: With 17 million customers doing 1.7 million
music downloads and demanding more apps, Nokia could not afford to have its huge
developer team spread across the globe, and working on different platforms and
not talking to each other. It centralized its development platform using the
PaaS (Platform as a Service) model. This made developing newer applications
easier and more cost effective, said Dr Satyan Coorg of Nokia.

“The entire world is moving to a subscription-based model, where 80-85% of
the cost goes into subscription, and the rest goes in implementation and
support.” says Pawan Sharma, President, Integrated Enterprise Solutions,
KPIT Cummins.

Cloud based apps should simplify IT: The IT infrastructure across most
organizations is extremely complex. People often get caught in defining detailed
specs to run different apps. If Cloud Computing products are used, it can
simplify life, said Niranjan Maka of VMware. He said that if you want to get
from point A to point B in a city, it doesn’t matter what type of technology is
being used by the vehicle you use, nor do you worry about its engine’s horse
power, type of fuel, etc. That’s how the IT infrastructure should also be, which
is possible by building Cloud Computing products that simplify the IT
infrastructure.

A very interactive audience bringing forth key points on cloud computing,
whether it was on agile development practices, requirements analysis, cloud
computing to help social causes for the govt, and many other things.

The world is moving to a subscription-based model: As far as services
are concerned, there’s a shift being seen toward a subscription-based model.
This was the clear message from Pawan Sharma of KPIT Cummins. The traditional
way that business functions in any organization involves multiple layers:
network, hardware, middleware, apps, process layer, and finally the stake
holders on top. These stake holders drive the business and want to improve their
processes. For this, they define the process in the process layer, choose the
application that would automate this process, and then choose the middleware,
and so an and so forth.

A fruitful discussion on how project management can be the key to establish
the best practices for making new cloud computing products, applications,
and solutions better, faster, and cheaper. The participants (from L to R)
were: Anil Chopra, Editor PCQuest (Moderator); Niranjan Maka, VMware; Dr.
Satyan Coorg, Nokia; Ashok Srinivasan, Microsoft; Hemanth Dattatreya, HP;
and Shouvick Mukherjee, Yahoo! India R&D

 

How to bring out Cloud Computing enabled IT services by following project
management best practices, the lessons to be learnt and their impact on a
global delivery model. The participants (from L to R): V Srinivas Rao
(Moderator), Chairman PMI Team India, Venugopalan Dorair, Dell; Gopal
Pingali, IBM; Abhijit Shroff, Infosys; Y K Maheshwari, Mphasis; and Pawan
Sharma, KPIT Cummins.

The new model does away with this. Now, when consumers want a server, they
don’t want to bother about the underlying infrastructure. It’s like selling a
subscription and getting the device free with it, or buying a set top box and
getting the TV free with it. Suddenly, the cost of the device itself becomes
immaterial. It comes free with the service, because that’s what the consumer is
interested in paying. So going forward, 80-85% of the cost would go toward
subscription, the rest would go in cost of device, support, etc. This completely
changes the way you see a project and size the activity. It requires a change in
thinking, re-skilling of manpower, etc.
Y K Maheshwari of Mphasis compared this shift to services-based model in a very
interesting manner, and how it’s bringing innovation down to the individual
level. He said that earlier, innovation used to be done within the closed walls
of a corporate office by stuffy people who had the money. Then, it moved to SMEs
who would try to be innovative without having the necessary funds. Now, it’s
moved to the individual level, where entrepreneurs are driving the change. Look
at all the app stores for instance. They have apps developed by individuals,
who’re now vying to make their apps popular and profitable. The cloud has moved
things from the ground to the cloud, he said. It has empowered everyone to run
their own businesses individually.

Anil Chopra

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