In a recent interview, Microsoft Corporate Vice President, Developer Division, Scott Guthrie talked about how Cloud computing with Windows Azure means that your developers can deliver a new kind of value to your business. He highlighted a few key points that, for you as a manager, serve as the business case for getting onboard with Cloud development:
Have a look:
Get the Journey Started
Let me offer you some advice. Though there is an inclination to jump right in and try this stuff out on an existing application, take a step back. In order to be successful on your journey to the Cloud, you need two things – a cloud strategy and developer training.
Strategizing your move to the Cloud will allow you to understand:
Next week we’ll go deeper into Cloud strategies and show you how to get started with your own strategy.
Architect/Developer Training Plan
While those aspects cover off your applications, the next consideration is your architecture and development teams. Your architects and developers need to get up to speed on the intricacies of the platform’s services. Key word - intricacies. There are many ways to use the various services of the Windows Azure platform, but only a few (specific to each application’s functional and non-functional requirements) will allow your organization to truly capitalize on the benefits of the Cloud and Windows Azure. That is why training has to start long before you start looking at migrating your first application. Developers need to learn how to use the services as well as the tools and toolkits that are available. Architects need to understand how application requirements map onto Windows Azure services and how each non-functional requirement ultimately affect which service to use when.
There are plenty of resources to get your team started (Windows Azure Platform Training Kit, Canadian Developer Connection to name a couple); however, resources (books, training kits, classes), can only teach the technical aspects of the platform. Knowledge gained from experience working with the platform – designing and building solutions that use it – will ensure that your organization’s journey to the Cloud will be successful. Emphasizing once more – training is required, but experience will make the difference.
Have your architects and developers start early, trying out learned concepts on smaller, less critical applications, to gain that experience. They will be able to see what works and what does not work in your environment, tweaking as necessary until an optimal solution is reached. While that is happening, you and other stakeholders in your organization can develop your Cloud strategy.
Straight Talk About Windows Azure
On the next episode of the AlignIT Manager Tech Talk (September 8, 2011, 12:00 PM – 12:30 PM EST), Joel Varty, Director of Research and Development at Agility CMS, joins Ruth and I for a straight talk about Windows Azure – the problems that it can solve, the opportunities that it can surface, and all of the above – challenges and lessons of transitioning design and development teams from traditional development to the Cloud. Joel will share how he worked with his team of architects and developers to get up to speed on Cloud development and their strategy for moving their applications to the Cloud.