Posted by: drmiw | June 16, 2010

Cloud computing world forum show guide article

There are just two weeks to go to the 2nd annual Cloud Computing World Forum, which is in London. It’s particularly exciting for me as I’ll be chairing day 3 of the conference. You can find my introductory article in the event show guide, which was released yesterday, but I’ve included below – with permission of course – the full text I provided to the conference organizers.

Welcome to the 2nd annual Cloud Computing World Forum

The recent global economic crisis made pay-as-you-go IT services, which had finally come of age at exactly the right time, an attractive proposition for businesses – it was a perfect storm for cloud computing. And now that the winds of change that swept through the financial markets and the computing industry have calmed somewhat, the skies are clear and we can look again at the bigger picture of cloud computing adoption. But first we need to move away from all those annoying metereological metaphors!

Another thing we need to move away from is definitions. At last year’s Cloud Computing World Forum it seemed that every speaker had a different definition of cloud computing. But that was understandable, and, perhaps, necessary – everyone was still coming to terms with the term. This year, however, most people attending our second annual conference will have a good idea what cloud computing is already, and they are looking instead for answers to more important questions like: What can you do with it?

If you have questions about cloud computing then this is the event for you. This second annual Cloud Computing World Forum will bring you up to speed on the current marketplace, and you will have an opportunity to interrogate major vendors in the exhibition hall during the session breaks. Numerous case studies are presented by representatives from some very famous institutions.While last year the argument was that cloud computing is perfect for small to medium sized businesses in particular, which it still is, we are now seeing an increasing uptake by large enterprises.

There are still a number of outstanding issues that are preventing mass adoption of cloud services, and security is still the key concern, especially among enterprises, so we have a dedicated session and a panel debate on this topic on conference day one. But, there are other considerations, too, that have to be taken into account when formulating a cloud transition strategy so day one concludes with a panel on best practices to get you thinking about your business.

Once you have decided on a cloud deployment model (public, community, private or hybrid) and a service model (Software, Platform or Infrastructure as a Service) the next step is implementation. Case studies on large scale deployment of clouds are presented on day two, and issues such as integration, interoperability, convergence, scalability, multi-tenancy and portability are discussed from an enterprise point of view. And looking outwards, the effects of cloud computing on the environment are discussed – how can we scale up our IT operations in a sustainable way?

Cloud computing affords fast application development and service provisioning, which is a major benefit for businesses, and a theme for day three of the conference. But what is the future for cloud computing in Europe and the world, and what role will the major cloud providers play? By the end of the conference you will have heard from many of the thought leaders in the industry and many organisations that have gone through the process of cloud adoption, and you will be better equipped to take your own business into the cloud.

At last year’s event we crammed a huge amount into just one day, but there is so much more to talk about in this expanding field, and our three-day conference for 2010 is jam-packed. I know I will get a lot out of the event and I’m sure you will, too.

Dr Mark I. Williams, Conference Chair

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