TIGER Talk Recap: Cloud Computing: Maximizing the Benefit Through Smart Implementation
Cloud computing is one of the highest trending buzzwords in the technology industry, generating over 97,400,000 Google search results. While most people have probably heard of cloud computing or even use it personally or in business, many may not fully understand what it is, how it works, and its many benefits.
Ronak Patel, CEO and co-founder of Sunflower Lab, presented “Cloud Computing: Maximizing the Benefit Through Smart Implementation” at Innovate New Albany’s TIGER Talk on September 15. TIGER Talks are offered free of charge throughout the month and educate entrepreneurs in the topics of technology, innovation, growth, entrepreneurship and responsibility.
Ronak’s presentation explained what cloud computing is, its characteristics, and its architecture.
What is Cloud Computing?
Ronak defined cloud computing as the on-demand delivery of compute power, storage, applications, and other IT resources as service via the Internet. Much like a utility service provider, companies can contract for technology.
Cloud computing is a great option for many businesses because it is accessible from anywhere, and you can scale it up or down as you need it.
Cloud Computing Architecture
Ronak described cloud computing architecture as a pyramid, with Infrastructure as a Service at the bottom, Platform as a Service in the Middle, and Software as a Service at the top. He defined each one and explained its pros and cons.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
There is no development or maintenance with SaaS cloud computing, and many businesses like it because it is mobile, resilient, and you can sign up for a free or paid subscription.
The disadvantage to SaaS is it cannot be customized, and the generic solutions may not be what you need.
Platform as s Service (PaaS)
PaaS provides tools and platforms to build new online applications. Examples of PaaS are Google App Engine, Azure Platform and Force.com.
PaaS can save time and cost with rapid development, and it is easy to deploy. However, applications built for a certain platform can’t move to another, so businesses that use PaaS are locked in to one vendor.
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
IaaS cloud computing allows existing applications to run and store data on cloud hardware, such as Amazon AWS, Rackspace Open Cloud, and IBM SmartCloud Enterprise. Businesses that use IaaS have full control of the virtual machine and everything inside it, and it allows for more flexibility for enterprise integration.
The disadvantage to IaaS is the customer is responsible for backups and failover strategy.
Public, Private and Hybrid Clouds
Small to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) can be on a public, private or hybrid cloud.
A public cloud is a multi-tenant environment with shared hardware and resources. A private cloud is a single-tenant environment that does not share hardware with other organizations. It is customized, secure, and compliant, and requires high performing servers.
Hybrid cloud is a combination of both private and public clouds. Some businesses may choose a hybrid cloud if, for example, they want to store financial data on the private cloud and ecommerce on a public cloud.
Overall it is up to each SMB to decide what level of cloud computing is right for them. Cloud computing can replace the cost to build servers, software, or platforms with predictable operation expenditures. With no long-term commitment and the ability to outsource the burden of maintaining their own hardware and software, cloud computing is a practical option for many.
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