Thoughts on enterprise IT

Dustin Amrhein

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Latest Articles from Dustin Amrhein
Not too long ago, I wrote a post about IBM's then very recent acquisition of a mobile application platform company called Worklight. Given the fact that is has been a while (at least in mobile market time) and IBM recently released (6/15) the new IBM Worklight 5.0 product, I thought it...
Rapid deployment capability is table stakes when we are talking about a PaaS solution. Every vendor touts it, and to be frank, every user simply expects it to be there. While I think it is interesting to talk about rapid deployment and perhaps compare speed of one solution to that of a...
Most in IT understand that mobile applications are unique. In terms of development, delivery, and management things just are not quite the same as compared to your typical enterprise application. There are many reasons for these differences including new and different programming model...
How about we start this post off with some facts? - Mobile data traffic exceeded voice traffic in 2010 (Wireless Industry News, August 26, 2010) - Shipments of smartphones exceeded the shipment of PCs for the first time in 2011 (2011 Economist) - Ten billion mobile connected devices...
I was talking to some colleagues the other day about the happenings in the world of cloud. Specifically, we were talking about a few different enterprises we worked with that had recently adopted cloud computing. As we talked, we seemed to hone in on the adoption path. Specifically, wh...
For the last 5+ years, I have been deeply focused in the area of middleware application servers and the container services that they provide. If you go a bit further back and look at the arc of progression in this space, you will see multiple pivots of innovation for these servers. In ...
If you get a chance to talk with directors or C-level executives about the benefits they expect to derive from adopting cloud computing techniques, expect to hear the terms ‘flexibility’, ‘agility’, and ‘cost reduction’ come up quite frequently. While those are valid expectations, thos...
A couple of weeks ago, I dropped by the Intel Developer Forum to present a session and listen in on a few others. As always in these types of shows, I learned quite a bit. Most strikingly though, I was reminded of something that is probably quite obvious to many of you: Consumer intere...
Quite some time back, I explored the idea of different delivery models for PaaS solutions. To sum it up concisely, I believe that PaaS providers have to make a decision when they deliver their solution. They have to decide the degree to which their solution supplies inherent knowledge ...
The growing consumer affinity to cloud is spurring on various new technological trends. It's not all new technology mind you, but there seems to be a growing appetite for anything that can remotely be put into the context of cloud computing. In some ways, cloud has been good for bringi...
I would venture a guess that many cloud service providers are happy with cloud conversations going on in enterprises today. I say this because, at least in my experience, enterprises are truly starting to seek out and embrace the idea of PaaS. Many times these enterprises have adopted ...
I find that it is interesting and sometimes even helpful to sit down and reflect on past experiences. That's true for life and it's true for work. In my last post, I reflected on some of the common challenges I have seen in the rollout of enterprise cloud projects. In this post, I want...
It seems like the last several months have brought a rapid increase in the number of organizations getting serious, really serious, about private clouds in their enterprise. By this, I mean they are going beyond working on ROI documents, formulating strategies, and doing referential re...
One of the fundamental tenants of IBM Workload Deployer is a choice of cloud deployment models. Starting in v3.0, users will be able to deploy to the cloud using virtual appliances (OVA files), virtual system patterns, or virtual application patterns. The ability to provision plain vir...
The platform services segment of cloud is multi-faceted… to say the least. Lately, likely spurred on by announcements like IBM Workload Deployer and VMware Cloud Foundry, I have been thinking quite a bit about one of those facets: environment management. To be clear, I’m not talking ab...
Quite honestly, I am a little fascinated at the preponderance of focus the industry sometimes puts on the cloud attribute of elasticity. Sure, it is important, and in fact, a necessary attribute to truly consider something a cloud. It also makes for cool reading in case studies where c...
Admittedly, when I was heads-down in code earlier in my career, I did not pay much attention to reference architectures. We had our own internal architectures that served as ‘the way and the truth’, and reference architectures for our product or solution domain were simply out of scope...
I grew up playing quite a few different sports, both team and individual. For me, there was little else that I would rather have done than compete on the field, court, diamond, or course. I loved sport, and I loved to compete (still do as a matter of fact), so it was a great fit. Parti...
A while back, I wrote about the importance and benefits of patterns-based middleware solutions for the cloud. You can check it out here if interested, but the gist is that by representing middleware application environments as patterns, we target traditional inefficiencies when dealing...
From time to time, you may hear that cloud computing and virtualization are forcing functions. Exactly what they serve as a forcing function for varies, ranging from IT security to process inefficiency. What does this mean? Quite simply, in many cases cloud computing and virtualization...
The role of cloud management solutions in the enterprise world is becoming increasingly important. With the interest and adoption of cloud in the enterprise steadily rising, solutions that help an organization to effectively harness, orchestrate, and govern their use of the cloud are f...
I spent last week at the annual IBM IMPACT event, and had a lot of great conversation with enterprise users about some of the transformations taking place in the IT industry. Most of my conversations focused on virtualization and the broader cloud computing architectural shift, and man...
It seems that cloud computing conversations are slowly beginning to march up the stack. Much of the initial focus in the space has been on cloud-based infrastructures such as servers, storage, networks, etc. To some degree, cloud-based approaches to this layer of IT are becoming more o...
Frankly I’ve grown weary of the debates over the security of cloud computing. It’s not that I don’t appreciate that there are technical hurdles in front of us, but we have reached a point that a security vulnerability in a single offering, whether that offering is in the public or priv...
As with most new technologies, the WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance inspires a healthy set of questions. As usual most of the questions are about features, capabilities, use cases, etc., yet there is one question that is quite frequent but a bit of an outlier from the preceding categorie...
Today my employer, IBM, announced that it was awarded a 10 month long contract with the United States Air Force. According to the press release, the contract calls for IBM to “design and demonstrate a secure cloud computing infrastructure capable of supporting defense and intelligence ...
Trying to pick apart a particular IT solution to figure out if it is right for you and your business can be a daunting task. Trying to do that for solutions in emerging spaces, like cloud computing, can seem even more difficult to the point of looking almost impossible. Case in point, ...
I suppose it’s a function of the company I work for (IBM) and in particular the organization I work within (WebSphere), but much of my focus and interest in the cloud computing space has been on application infrastructure running in the cloud (PaaS). Specifically, I’m keen on offerings...
In terms of cloud computing in application environments, elasticity is perhaps one of the more alluring and potentially beneficial aspects of this new delivery model. I’m sure that to many of those responsible for the operational and administrative aspects of these application environm...
Andrew goes on to make the point that not only is code written in the declarative style easier to adapt and maintain over time, it also lends itself to better optimizations. The reason for this is pretty obvious based on his definition above. Code written in the imperative style explic...
I’ve written numerous technical entries both here and elsewhere about the WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance. The appliance is a cloud management device that is geared towards those enterprises that for a variety of reasons (security, privacy, performance, customization capability, existin...
As hard as I tried I couldn't resist the lure of doing some type of year-end/new year type cloud blog. However, I decided to forgo the route of giving you a recap of what happened this year in cloud computing or attempting to guess where the rapidly expanding and changing cloud market ...
Defining cloud computing has proven to be nearly impossible. Ask ten different people and you'll get ten different answers. Countless discussion groups, blogs, articles, etc. have attempted to give their own take on cloud computing, and all to no avail. The industry just can't agree on...
In many cases we as the industry talk about the cloud computing being a new and optimized approach to delivering IT services. From the point of view of application developers, cloud computing offers dynamic platforms that equip them with the capability to deliver their application in a...
A recent announcement from IBM signaled the open beta program of its newest cloud offering: IBM Smart Business Development & Test on the IBM Cloud. One of the newest offerings in the suite of cloud products from IBM, the IBM Cloud provides a public cloud where users can launch and run ...
Not long ago I worked on a team charged with building up a Java-based REST infrastructure. Our goals were to first support what was then an emerging specification for Java-based RESTful services called JAX-RS. Beyond that, we had thoughts of building an entire framework, both server an...
The WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance can bring speed and agility to test organizations by drastically increasing the pace and ease with which users interact with WebSphere Application Server environments. I recently got a chance to catch up with IBM's Robbie Minshall. Robbie is a WebSphe...
If cloud computing talk from the government seemed like lip service at first, it has certainly moved beyond that now. According to an InformationWeek article, the federal government’s General Services Administration (GSA) issued a Request For Quotation (RFQ) for cloud storage, web host...
A common feature of cloud computing solutions is that they enable self-service access to the services they provide. This enables users to directly procure services from the cloud, and it eliminates the need for more time-consuming, labor-intensive, human-driven procurement processes fa...
This is a blog that proposes five distinct ways in which cloud computing solutions can strenghten the efforts of development and test teams within an enterprise.