We just wrapped up our annual Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), held in Washington, D.C. where thousands of partners from over 100 countries came to participate in this years meme 'Cloud Computing'. If you haven't seen any of the coverage or watched the keynotes, I highly recommend you take some time to visit the digital site to take in some of the content.
My two favorite blogs this week were actually here on the "Meet the Experts" blog. Mario Jaurez on the Windows Server blog does a great job explaining the news surrounding our new Windows Azure Platform Appliance which in IMHO is a game changer and huge differentiators for us in this space. Donald Farmer weighs in on the SQL Server blog with a great write upon "Project Dallas" our information marketplace that will revolutionize the sharing and usage of large data sets. Read both as they will give you an appreciation of just how massive our "All In" initiative is across Microsoft.
Over the last couple of weeks, it's clear the cloud discussion is growing louder and more dispersed. It's sort of like a conversation that starts between two people, a third joins, a fourth and fifth weigh in, then split off to talk about something new and so on and so on. This is a sign of momentum and maturity. We are now well beyond the Hype Cycle and into real execution by vendors and significant usage by customers.
The week before WPC, several companies went to our nations capital to attend a hearing on cloud computing held by the Oversight Committee to Examine Government-wide Transition to Cloud Computing. Information Week covered the newsand our own Scott Charney discussed Microsoft's view on the cloud and it's potential opportunities and challenges. When it comes to 'walking the walk' in public sector, I think our success with the Kentucky Department of Education demonstrates just how powerful, fast and wide sweeping a cloud project can be for constituents.
Federal News Radio also featured a great interviewwith Vince Menzione, General Manager of Microsoft where he discussed how Microsoft's solutions are built to meet the needs of customers with flexibility and security at the core.
Dan Lyons over at Newsweek also posted a great storyabout my area of expertise, cloud based productivity and messaging. He highlights two great Microsoft customer stories, Rexel and Serena Software, who both recently migrated to our BPOSsolution. The cloud can deliver dramatic cost savings, on average of 30% for workloads like email and collaboration. But 'cheap' isn't the only driver because as with everything, you get what you pay for. Just ask these customers how they felt about pursing a 'cheap only' cloud strategy.
Despite outrages claims by some vendors, the cloud isn't magic. It's just another way for great software companies to deliver the next wave of innovation for another generation of computing.
"Dogfooding" is a term that was started by engineers at Microsoft. I originally read about the term in the book "Showstopper" and immediately became fascinated with software and in particular Microsoft's approach to build world class products. Put simply, it means to use your own stuff as early and as often as possible. I am huge believer in this but might feel differently if I were a virologist tinkering with new vaccines. :)
Techtarget had a nice write up about Amazon making the move internally over to their AWS (Amazon Web Services) solution. At Microsoft, we still 'dogfood' most every product we deliver, including our new cloud offerings. For example, I've been using our Office Web Apps for over a year and my inbox is managed by the same team of Ops engineers who support our BPOS customers. This approach makes our products stronger, makes our customer happier and in the end, drives the industry forward.
Hi Andrew, great Blog ! I'm in charge of a Microsoft Insurance business partner, Mi Limited, in London. We have a terrific product which is in use throughout the London insurance market in the UK and assists firms in dealing with major insurance risks worldwide (including oil wells...). We'd like Mr. Cloud to go to London ! We have an audience of insurance CIOs at a Microsoft location in mid-September: who would be a great Microsoft speaker on Cloud and how could I contact him or her ? Take care - John Bradley