Amazon officially launched Amazon Web Services (AWS) in 2006, marking a significant pivot in the traditional way that organizations set up their infrastructure. For AWS the plan was simple: tackle the market’s growing desire for self-service computing and take a healthy bite out of the 100 billion dollar industry associated with on-premise servers and other associated hardware purchases.
Dead are the days that businesses were required to house and maintenance their own server infrastructure. The traditional model is expensive, resource-exhausting, and difficult to scale. Cloud Computing allows for greater flexibility, instant provisioning, virtualized resources, and the ability to expand the server base quickly. Before we get into how Justin Bieber, Ellen DeGeneres, and the Public Cloud make any sense in the same sentence, we must address one basic question: What is the Public Cloud?
Definition of Public Cloud: The Public Cloud is a service in which a vendor, such as AWS, provides cloud services in a virtualized environment, constructed using pooled shared physical resources, and accessible over a public network such as the Internet. Typically Cloud Computing is provided in a "pay as you consume" model. In contrast to a Private Cloud model, which “fences in” the pool of computing resources for a single organization, a Public Cloud provides services to multiple clients using the same shared infrastructure, making the service much more affordable.
Make sense? In short, rather than having your own servers for your business applications, you have access to an infinite pool of shared resources provided by Amazon, Azure, or any number of Public/Private Cloud providers. But Cloud Computing isn’t right for every business.
What Would Make Public Cloud Right for Your Business?
There are several different types of organizations that match the ideal Public Cloud candidate profile. For the sake of entertainment, let’s paint a picture of the perfect scenario for Cloud Computing: it’s mid-September in Portland, Oregon, and Jefferey is on his way to the office. Jefferey is the “Senior Developer” for Rec&Tag Digital Face Recognition Software. Now you may have 2 questions: Why are there quotes around Jefferey’s title and WTF is Rec&Tag?
1. There are quotes around Jefferey’s title because “Senior” is a far leap for a company with 5 employees, and only a few months being operational. The more appropriate title would be “Only Developer,” but that doesn’t really carry the same clout does it?
2. What’s Rec&Tag? What you’ve never heard of it??? No, of course not. They haven’t quite got the traction they had hoped for in their first 3 months, and most of their Internet traffic is coming from overseas.
But then it happened!
While surfing the web in-between Instagram posts, and insider blogs about beauty tips, Justin Bieber – aka the Biebs – accidentally clicks on a pay per click ad for R&T Face Recognition Software, thinking it was facial rejuvenating soft scrub… Oh Justin… Anyways, the Biebs gets lost on R&T’s beautiful website, as only the Biebs can do, and before you know it he has downloaded the free trial, uploaded a picture of himself and got his results. Justin Bieber looks like: Ellen DeGeneres!
R&T’s software is designed to do one thing: get people to download the software and share their results via social media (hence the “Tag” in Rec&Tag). Now that both the Biebs and Ellen have both Snapped, Tweeted, posted and whatever else, the Internet in blowing up and followers have even created a hashtag: #BiebGeneres. Millions of visitors are hitting www.R&T.com to download the app and see who they look like (in case you were wondering, this is a fictional story - you can’t have an ampersand in a web address – lol). Here’s the catch, the website’s infrastructure wasn’t designed to handle millions of visitors simultaneously – the website crashed and an opportunity to launch into Internet fame and fortune was lost forever!
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Jefferey was fired almost immediately, but of course it didn’t matter because Rec&Tag completely imploded upon itself as the leadership team continued to point fingers and cry over spilt milk. What happened here? How could things have gone so wrong? Well… the servers Jefferey spun up at HQ were estimated to only handle the traffic the leadership team predicted in the first few months, and not much more. After all, money was tight; servers are expensive, and getting the product to market was the first priority. The idea was to purchase more servers as they grew. Sound familiar? This is a common problem for startup businesses, entrepreneurs looking to make a big splash, and even enterprise organizations looking to grow rapidly.
The story above is one of a million different scenarios in which a move to a Public or Private Cloud environment makes sense for modern businesses. As Cloud-based applications are becoming the norm, and our dependency on Internet connection continues to rise, the need for modern infrastructure solutions is becoming more and more important. Businesses of all sizes have the need for services that give them more flexibility, allow them to grow as they see fit without large capital expenditures, and plan for the future. Cloud Computing is one way to achieve this.
How to Best Migrate to a Public Cloud Environment
Where you choose to house your applications, host your website, obtain critical storage etc., is up to you. But as intelligent, forward thinking IT administrators and business owners, it is important to know your options. The Public/Private Cloud environment allows significant advantages, however, the thought process of ensuring connectivity, security, and availability is often overlooked. As with most IT conversations involving direct vendor relationships, whatever the solution you are being pitched by the vendor, direct is going to be the very best possible avenue and address every concern you have. The truth is that just like other business technologies such as cloud phone systems, firewalls, and SD-WAN, not all solutions are created equal. It is important to align yourself with a partner who understands the nuances of Public Cloud deployments, can analyze your critical applications, engineer successful connectivity strategies, and ultimately help you ensure a successful migration.
But What Happened to Jefferey!?!
Jefferey learned his lesson. After being let go by Rec&Tag, he joined his brother-in-law's company which just recently found a way to reduce the stress related to cat litterbox maintenance. The service is called LBaaS. Which stands for LitterBox as a Service. With this service, someone will come to your house on bi-weekly basis, clean your cat's litterbox, and replace it with biodegradable, 0-emission, anti-toxin floppy disc mulch (totally fictional) because what else are we doing with all those floppies? Needless to say, he implemented a Public Cloud infrastructure to house Kitty Time's critical infrastructure, and they are well on their way to dominating the Litterbox as a Service market. All they need is for Ellen to get a cat...
Author: Ryan Graven