The Cloud has made entrepreneurism itself more accessible to more people, lowering the barrier to entry by lowering the costs it takes to launch a new online venture by a magnitude, while simultaneously improving the quality of the apps you can produce, and how quickly you can produce them.
Combined with the continuing explosion of online users and how much they grow their daily use of social media and e-commerce this is a massively potent combination.
As Information Age reports Enterprise Search is still an application that many CIO’s have yet to deploy.
This is really quite surprising once you learn about how powerful this technology is, and how many issues many enterprise organizations are still dealing with today it can be used to tackle.
The goal of our ‘Canadian Hybrid Cloud‘ program is as the name suggests, to define the hybrid cloud in ‘Canadian terms’, meaning how it could make use of local Canadian suppliers, as well as the big USA firms like Amazon.
Hand in hand with this is another primary goal, that being to showcase local early stage innovations in the Cloud research field, from universities and so forth, as a means of helping stimulate the associated start-up industry.
For many customers moving to the Cloud is the best strategy when presented with a compelling event to do so, with a timely example being how Microsoft are ending support for Windows 2003 on July 14th next year. Customers will face lots of painful issues if they haven’t moved off the platform by then.
They have the option of migrating apps to in-house servers on W2012, however this situation is an example of the hassle that comes with managing your own infrastructure!
In their blog series Modernizing with Hybrid Cloud Microsoft explain how this kind of hassle can be eliminated in the future by migrating to the Cloud, as well as upgrading the app.
Greg O’Conner of Appzero captures this sentiment in ‘Modernize as you migrate‘, and in their white paper describe how they surveyed Fortune 1000 IT professionals to assess their readiness for the impending end of support of Windows Server 2003, revealing:
- More than half of the respondents (52%) have 100 or more machines running WS2003
- Security compliance and vulnerability management is the largest concern about running on WS2003
- Only a quarter of respondents have a plan to upgrade; others are not aware of the EOS date, have no plans yet or are investigating their options
- Moving to the cloud was the most popular known upgrade path
- Close to 40% are not sure of upgrade path (cloud or not cloud)
Industry experts estimate that there are more than 10 million machines still running WS2003, presenting a huge issue especially for regulated industries who will find themselves in breach of compliance rules.
This demonstrates a clear value for the value of managed services via Cloud hosting, and as well as Microsoft Azure customers also have options including local Cloud providers, the theme of our Canadian Hybrid Cloud program.
by David Drury
Most Canadian CIOs have their heads in the cloud these days, with seven out of 10 businesses expected to pursue hybrid clouds by 2015, and 85 per cent of new software being built for cloud.
CIOs across the board are feeling pressure from somewhere – whether it’s their CEO, their employees, customers, partners or the general shift in the market – to implement the latest cloud-based IT technology for efficiency, agility and economy. But they also need to take advantage of their existing IT infrastructure to maximize return on investment.
A key marketing feature for our Sponsors is our ‘Blog Review Marketing’, simply meaning a rating feature that we utilize to review items like Cloud products and services, as well as expert articles and so forth.
This is part of a broader goal to showcase the innovation and leadership that occurs in Canada, with a view to promoting it to a national and global audience interested in this field, and organized via specific topics like Cloud Security.
It says a lot about the immense capability of today’s technology that nothing less than an extinction-level-event is a valid excuse for enterprise data loss or service outages.
With the increasing frequency of natural and man-made disasters, DRaaS (disaster recovery as a service) is gaining steam as a viable solution for government and the private sector alike. Office closings, outages, and transportation obstacles rocket losses into the tens of billions, yet enterprises are still on the hook for end-customer and partner trust – not to mention SLA’s and availability.
The headline best practice for this new CCN group is the ‘Canadian Hybrid Cloud’, and how it enables ‘Hybrid Cloud Outsourcing’.
One of my favourite case studies to this end is this video interview (see below) with Heather Campbell, previously CIO with Canadian Pacific, on the new culture of Cloud and innovation she brought to the organization through driving more adoption of new technologies like Cloud Computing.
As part of our ongoing focus on WordPress, the open source web platform, we’ll look at how small businesses can use it for “Social Commerce” functionality, modernizing their online presence and boosting sales through tapping the ever-expanding social media universe.
WordPress is ideal for SMEs – For example Public Storage in Canada use it for their main web site and using plugin modules for adding web site functionality like a store locator.
Social Commerce – Business model innovation
This case study demonstrates how WordPress is such an effective business tool for SMEs – It’s easy to have a nice looking web site up and running in minutes, that is then easy to populate with your content.
The original CCN started on a free WordPress.com account, and since then our capabilities with WordPress have expanded significantly warranting an upgrade here to add lots of new features.
In summary these features are:
- Best Practices - A core base of localized Cloud best practices.
- News & Events - A round up of local news and events, including Meetups, Conferences etc.
- Social media publishing - All aspects of blogging, wikis, newsletters and so on, channeled towards specific topics and ultimately creating an online ‘living’ buyers guide.
- Social media marketing - Enable participating vendors to promote themselves through these same tools, creating blogs, indexing their content with SEO tags, and so on. The Vendor Directory is linked to the best practices, so that you can locate vendors, by e.g. DRaaS – Disaster Recovery as a Service.
- Executive Guides – Content streams will be packaged and edited into snapshots for executives looking for a quick overview of key topics; for example our Small Business Guide.
- E-Learning Community - Experts will be able to create e-learning courseware, and students will be issued with CCN Credentials.