If utilities moved to the cloud, would they use more renewables?

If utilities moved to the cloud, would they use more renewables?The cloud has been a game changer for various industries looking to embrace digitization. In the context of energy, it has the potential to significantly increase the ways in which clean and renewable energy resources can be made viable.

Yet many power utilities are lagging behind their industrial counterparts in embracing the cloud and cloud-based services. What’s holding them back?

Archaic regulatory structures and an institutional distrust of moving data over the internet are a couple of major inhibitors. In the past, the IT needs of utilities didn’t necessitate extensive infrastructure or staff such that the utility couldn’t afford to install and run everything in-house.

But industry-wide changes stemming from the global energy transition require a more robust and agile IT infrastructure — and for many utilities, this won’t be economically feasible without the cloud.

That global transition in energy can be characterized by two major trends:

  1. The growing demand for cleaner forms of energy such as renewables, distributed generation and energy efficiency; and
  2.  A changing set of customer expectations where customers require the same digital services from their power utility as they do from their cellular provider.

The cloud will help utilities create value in terms of operationally facilitating the increased use of renewables and clean energy. It also will support a better experience for customers by helping them to meaningfully reduce their energy use. In some cases, it even can improve energy efficiency for the utility.

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The cloud computing effect: Better security for all

The cloud computing effect: Better security for allCloud computing offers lots of benefits, but improved security is not one that makes many IT lists. In fact, many — perhaps even most — IT pros still believe that cloud computing means a huge step backward in terms of security risk.

That doesn’t seem to be the case. About 10 percent of our workloads now run on public clouds, and so far, so good.

Why? Ironically, partly because IT has been so paranoid about public clouds that it spent time and money to implement advanced security approaches such as identity and access management and to be more proactive about security measures.

Moreover, public cloud providers themselves understand the importance of security. If they get one cross-tenant hack, they are done for. Thus, providers consistently and proactively update security systems. Most enterprises would like to do the same, but they don’t have the time or the budget, which leaves them comparatively more vulnerable.

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Why Switch To The Cloud? 20 Benefits of Cloud Computing

Why Switch To The Cloud? 20 Benefits of Cloud ComputingIn their 2016 State of the Cloud Survey, Right Scale notes that Cloud adoption is up to nearly 95%. Why has using it become such as normal part of all of our lives? The simple response is that it’s better than the alternative. Technology progresses over time and society begins to adopt it. But the cloud in particular has so many benefits over local storage that it seems worthwhile to list them out.
1. Cheap  2. Collaborative  3. Up-To-Date  4. Mobile  5. Reliable  6. Scalable
7. Consistant  8. Eco-Friendly  9. Streamlined 10. Light  11. Supportive
12. Modern  13. Integratable  14. Secure  15. Commitment-free
16. Analytical  17. Immediate  18. Fast  19. Accountable  20. Intuitive

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To Move Fast on Cloud Computing, Go Slow

To Move Fast on Cloud Computing, Go Slow

The mad rush to adopt cloud technology is no secret. In fact, the tsunami of organizations that are racing to implement these solutions clearly reflects the need to have the best new “it” in IT. As TJ McCue wrote, “Instead of a slow-moving, fluffy white cloud image, the cloud computing industry should use a tornado – that might be a better way to visualize how fast cloud computing is growing today.” In fact, the global market for cloud-computing equipment is predicted to reach almost $80 billion by 2018.

The exceptional benefits and transformative power of the cloud are clear – efficiency, productivity, scalability, storage capacity, and better use of analytics, just to name a few. But, as with all revolutionary solutions, the urgency among market leaders to introduce greater agility into their organizations, to “be fast and be first,” can lead to real buyer’s remorse over designing and deploying precisely the wrong set of cloud solutions for their organizations.


Read the source article at Data Informed
Original Author: Jim Cole

Scaling Collaboration in DevOps

Scaling Collaboration in DevOps

Those familiar with DevOps generally agree that it is equally as much about culture as it is about technology. There are certainly tools and practices involved in the effective implementation of DevOps, but the foundation of DevOps success is how well teams and individuals collaborate across the enterprise to get things done more rapidly, efficiently and effectively.

Most DevOps platforms and tools are designed with scalability in mind. DevOps environments often run in the cloud and tend to be volatile. It’s important for the software that supports DevOps to be able to scale in real time to address spikes and lulls in demand. The same thing is true for the human element as well, but scaling collaboration is a whole different story.

Collaboration across the enterprise is critical for DevOps success. Great code and development needs to make it over the finish line to production to benefit customers. The challenge organizations face is how to do that seamlessly and with as much speed and automation as possible without sacrificing quality or performance. How can businesses streamline code development and deployment, while maintaining visibility, governance and compliance?

Read the source article at devops.com
Original Author: Tony Bradley

Big data analytics – what it is and why you should care

Big data analytics – what it is and why you should care

Analysis: Big data analytics can be vital to providing your business with a key differentiator.

The technology sector has become renowned for its buzzwords, whether it is IoT, Cloud, big data or convergence. What these buzzwords don’t do is explain what exactly it is they are.

An area such as big data analytics is so vast that the buzzword merely over simplifies the area and aids in increasing complexity.

Essentially big data analytics is the process of analysing data sets in order to uncover hidden patterns, correlations, market trends and various other useful pieces of business information.

The term big data is typically applied to data sets whose size or type is beyond the ability of traditional databases to capture, manage, and process the data with low-latency. Big data can come from a variety of different sources such as from sensors, devices, video, networks, log files, transactional applications and from web and social media.

Read the source article at Technology

Five Security Features That Your Next-Gen Cloud Must Have

Nastel Comments: Cloud computing demands a high degree of automation from an application performance management (APM) / business transaction management (BTM) solution in order to deliver the visibility that users require.

An APM / BTM solution must adjust what and where it is monitoring in order to keep pace with the elastic configuration of this ever-changing environment and deliver the promised return on investment that cloud users expect. Manual efforts to specify where the applications are, the dependencies between transactions and the status of services will not be effective.
Five Security Features That Your Next-Gen Cloud Must Have

With cloud computing, virtualization, and a new type of end-user – the security landscape around the modern infrastructure needed to evolve. IT consumerization and a lot more data within the organization has forced security professionals to adopt better ways to protect their environment. The reality is that standard firewalls and UTMs are just no longer enough. New technologies have emerged which can greatly enhance the security of a cloud and virtualization environment – without impacting performance. This is where the concept of next-generation security came from.

It was the need to abstract physical security services and create logical components for a powerful infrastructure offering.

With that in mind – let’s look at five great next-gen security features that you should consider.

  1. Virtual security services. What if you need application-level security? What about controlling and protecting inbound, outbound, and intra-VM traffic? New virtual services can give you entire virtual firewalls, optimized anti-virus/anti-malware tools, and even proactive intrusion detection services. Effectively, these services allow for the multi-tenant protection and support of network virtualization and cloud environments.
  2. Going agentless. Clientless security now directly integrates with the underlying hypervisor. This gives your virtual platform the capability to do fast, incremental scans as well as the power to orchestrate scans and set thresholds across VM’s. Here’s the reality – you can do all of this without performance degradation. Now, we’re looking at direct virtual infrastructure optimization while still maintaining optimal cloud resource efficiency. For example, if you’re running on a VMware ecosystem, there are some powerful “agentless” technologies you can leverage. Trend Micro’s Deep Security agentless anti-malware scanning, intrusion prevention and file integrity monitoring capabilities help VMware environments benefit from better resources utilization when it comes to securing VMs. Further, Deep Security has been optimized to support the protection of multitenant environments and cloud-based workloads, such as Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.
  3. Integrating network traffic with security components. Not only can you isolate VMs, create multi-tenant protection across your virtual and cloud infrastructure, and allow for application-specific protection – you can now control intra-VM traffic at the networking layer. This type of integration allows the security layer to be “always-on.” That means security continues to be active even during activities likes a live VM migration.
  4. Centralized cloud and virtual infrastructure management/visibility. Whether you have a distributed cloud or virtualization environment – management and direct visibility are critical to the health of your security platform. One of the bestthings about next-generation security is the unified visibility the management is capable of creating. Look for the ability to aggregate, analyze and audit your logs and your entire security infrastructure. Powerful spanning policies allow your virtual infrastructure to be much more proactive when it comes to security. By integrating virtual services (mentioned above) into the management layer – administrators are able to be proactive, stay compliant, and continuously monitor the security of their infrastructure.
  5. Consider next-gen end-point security for your cloud users. There are some truly disruptive technologies out there today. Here’s an example: Cylance. This security firm replaces more traditional, signature-based, technologies with a truly disruptive architecture. Basically, Cylance uses a machine-learning algorithm to inspect millions of file attributes to determine the probability that a particular file is malicious. The algorithmic approach significantly reduces the endpoint and network resource requirement. Because of its signature-less approach, it is capable of detecting both new threats and new variants of known threats that typically are missed by signature-based techniques. Here’s the other really cool part – even when your users disconnect from the cloud, they’re still very well protected. Because the Cylance endpoint agent does not require a database of signatures or daily updates, and is extremely lightweight on network, compute, and data center resources – it can remain effective even when disconnected for long periods.

Read the source article at Web Host Industry Review
Original Author: thewhir

Cloud Chronicles: Why Care.com cares about the cloud

Nastel Comments: Having your business run on cloud can be beneficial but can also be challenging especially with governance. Cloud governance such as AutoPilot’s cloud governance technology provides the automation necessary for businesses that move to cloud to rapidly realize the benefits of monitoring application and transaction performance in a cloud computing environment and ensure application and transaction availability

Cloud Chronicles: Why Care.com cares about the cloud

In the latest edition of Cloud Chronicles, Network World’s Brandon Butler visits the offices of Care.com, which runs almost its entire business via the cloud. Care.com fully embraced using cloud. They have looked at cloud as a strategy for their internal systems as opposed to on premise because of the overall ease of management of those systems.  With that comes a few challenges such as governance and costs that organizations have to be aware of as well and opportunities such as increasing speed and innovation . Hear how they are using the Cloud to run their business.

Read the source article at Welcome to Network World.com

You Bought Into the Cloud: Now What?

You Bought Into the Cloud: Now What?

One of the advantages of a cloud infrastructure is that you can scale up easily – as long as you have the right infrastructure. Take the time up front to get your systems working, as you want them, whether they are cloud applications, data, or analytics.


Read the source article at Data Informed

Original Author: Ellie Fields