One of the capabilities delivered by true cloud computing solutions is the power to dynamically scale up and down based on the needs that applications and users are placing on the service. This also correlates to one of the key benefits that businesses can realize when investing in cloud computing as an infrastructure and platform choice, which is helping to minimize the time and costs associated with idle IT resources that may only be called upon when there is an occasional usage spike maximizing those resources.
Related to the scalability of cloud platforms, such as Windows Azure, there’s an interesting article by ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley, who recently spoke with Microsoft’s Bill Hilf (General Manager of the Technical Computing Group), touching on the topic of providing supercomputing resources which can scale to manage and analyze enormous amounts of data. In the article Hilf talks about Windows Azure eventually including high-performance computing projects like Microsoft’s Dryad, a set of components developed by Microsoft Research which simplifies the running of complex data-analysis applications. Bill also posted an interesting, related piece late last year here on the big challenges that technical computing in the cloud can help address for the scientific research, finance and manufacturing segments.
While the ongoing evolution of cloud computing will continue to advance its capabilities rapidly in the near term, there are certainly businesses already benefitting from adopting cloud solutions today to address their various Infrastructure (IaaS), Plaform (PaaS) and Software (SaaS) as a Service needs, such as T-Mobile and Xerox. If you’re interested in finding information about what cloud computing can offer your business and how other companies are already using Microsoft’s enterprise cloud offerings, please check out our Cloud Power site here.
Thanks – larry