09 March 2015

Some thoughts on data in the cloud gathered at CloudScape VII

Some if-not-quite-live then certainly not at all dead notes from #CloudScapeVII on data in the cloud.
  • How to establish trust in the cloud data centre?  Clouds can run pretty good security, which you'd otherwise only get in the large data centre.
    • Clouds can build trust by disclosing processes and practices - Rüdiger Dorn, Microsoft
    • Clarify responsibilities
    • "35% of security breaches are due to stupid things" - like leaving memory sticks on a train or sending CDs by post... - Giorgio Aprile, AON
    • Difficulty to inculcate good (security) practice in many end users
  • "Opportunity to make big data available in cloud" - Robert Jenkins, CloudSigma
    • Model assumes that end users pay for the ongoing use of data
    • Democratise data
  • Data protection
    • Kuan Hon from QMUL instilled the fear of data protection in everyone that provides data storage. The new data protection stuff doesn't seem to take clouds into accounts - lots of scary implications. [Good thing we are not storing personal data on the grid...]
    • Protection relies on legal frameworks - sign a contract saying you won't reveal the data - rather than technology (encrypt it to preventing your revealing the data)
  • Joe Baguley from vmware talked about the abstractions: where RAID abstracted harddrives from storage, we now do lots more abstractions with hypervisors, containers, software-defined-X, etc.
    • Layers can optimise, so can get excellent performance
    • Stack can be hard to debug when something doesn't work so well...
    • Generally more benefits than drawbacks, so a Good Thing™
    • Overall, speed up data → analysis → app → data → analysis → app → ... cycle
  • "What's hot in the cloud" - panel of John Higgings (DigitalEurope), Joe Baguley (vmware), David Bernstein (Cloud Strategy Partners), Monique Morrow (CISCO)
    • Big data is also fast data (support for more Vs), lots of opportunities for in memory processing
    • Data - use case for predictive analysis and pattern recognition (and in general machine learning)
    • devops needed to break down barriers [as we know quite well from the grid where we have tb-support née dteam]
    • Disruptive technological advances to, er, disrupt?
    • Many end users are using clouds without knowing it -like people using facebook.
Hope I've done it some justice. As always, lots of very interesting things in CloudScape even for those of us who have been providing "cloud" services (in some sense) for a while. Also good of course to catch up with old friends and meeting new ones.

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