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As some of you already know, I have recently made another move. After over 15 years in the Software (vendor) space in one capacity or another, I have moved back into the enterprise. Although the last couple of years I have been focused on cloud, especially cloud application platform (Windows Azure and VMware Cloud), I am now very excited to go back to enterprise architecture.
Leading Enterprise Architecture for Enterprise Functions at Chevron! The scope of the application portfolio, the enterprise architecture leadership in the company, and the leadership in ITC is absolutely refreshing!
How did I get here? What led me to walk away from the hot team at Microsoft – Windows Azure, and even more interesting, leave Microsoft after 9+ years.
First, its important to note that most of the 9 years I spent at Microsoft were incredibly rewarding. I worked with some really smart and good people. And Microsoft is indeed a great company to work for.
So why leave? Well, first I need to get something off my chest – let me start with Innovation and R&D. Every year for the last 9 years, Microsoft executives remind all the employees, customers, partners, the world that they spend between $6 – 8 billion in R&D annually! Really? Now, I am not implying that there is a lack of innovation going on in the mildew forest (redmond); there are some really cool things like XBOX Live, Surface, .Net, Windows Azure, Live Mesh. But lets face it, Windows XP to Vista to Windows 7 (a Vista SP) over 9 years was not very innovative – especially now that I am using OS X! Windows Mobile Phone strategy? Search? Over $60 billion in R&D over 9 years – I can probably come up with a list 10 startups that had less then $300 million in funding in total that are more relevant today and innovative. …OK. I feel better now.
I mentioned being on the hot Windows Azure team, as well as listing it as innovative, and I still think there is some really cool technology there. Some of the best innovation in the last 9 years at Microsoft. Public PaaS Cloud is certainly innovative, interesting and very relevant to future deployment scenarios (not all, but some). But I started to question the overall “cloud” strategy and approach. I really think Azure technology should have first been introduced as a private cloud (on – premise) platform, enabling enterprises to build on their virtualization footing, and start with customized private PaaS. Then compliment that with a Public PaaS strategy that included ISPs and Partners and enable hybrid cloud scenarios. Instead, its sort of a huge leap for most enterprises to think about what workloads to build onto this primarily new and proprietary platform running in Microsoft Data Centers, and have a completely different perspective and approach to cloud patterns on-premise. Sorry, its not Hyper-V and Windows Server.
Then there is Ray Ozzie’s departure (not to mention all the other executives leaving to this day). Ozzie was the new Bill Gates at Microsoft. The “architect” of the new Microsoft and leading the transformation and vision for the cloud – the driving force and vision behind Azure. All of a sudden, while on the Azure team and coming to, Ozzie resigns! And then Ozzie writes his “Dawn of a New Day” . As I wrote in my blog post regarding the memo – Its a very interesting read and as one of my colleagues tweeted; “Shut the door, turn off your phone and read Ray Ozzie’s Dawn of a New Day” .
Anyway – my Azure bubble was popped. I was no longer a believer, nor passionate about the direction. There were other things that I wont go into, and there were also things that made me want to stick around – mostly some good people. I will absolutely treasure some of the work and people I was fortunate to work with – some of who are still at Microsoft. Keep up the good work!!!
I have found a renewed love for something from Microsoft that runs on the Mac – MacOffice 2011. Now, we just need OneNote on the Mac.
I am finding an incredibly rich, innovative, and very relevant approach and strategy at my new gig! With some incredibly compelling dialogue with enterprises regarding cloud. More on that on that later….
Many enterprise architects are looking at cloud, and Windows Azure, and contemplating what type of application workloads fit for that deployment model. There are many scenarios that really reveal compelling value in deploying to the cloud. One of my colleagues, David Aiken, Technical Evangelist / Specialist on our Global Windows Azure team, does a great job highlighting application workloads and patterns that fit well in this model. In this episode of ARCast.tv on Channel 9, David talks to Bob Familiar about the architecture patterns that lend themselves to building scalable services for the cloud. You can view the video here.
Today, the term “cloud” is thrown around a lot in the IT industry. Some are calling it the new “dot com” topic. Well, I am not sure it comes with the bubble connotations that we saw in the late 90’s/early 2000’s, but I do think the cloud presents real value and significant change to business and consumers. Change that relates to how enterprise’s are thinking about enterprise architecture, change with regard to IT service delivery models, and change to business models (operational expenses for what IT services you use, rather than capital expenditures for what you might use), etc.
Recently, one of my esteemed collogues, John Alioto, Architect Evangelist at Microsoft, wrote some great blog posts on “Categorizing the Cloud” Part 1 & Part 2. Part 1 is focused on categorizations of the cloud, from an architectural perspective, and lands on three dimensions against which we could categorize a Cloud offering. Those dimensions are Service Model, Deployment Model and Isolation Model. Part 2 is more focused on taking those dimensions and then categorizing the cloud from a business model perspective. What cloud models apply for various business models. I like the taxonomy that John uses, by first starting with some simplistic, but relevant themes to call out. Themes that have been around for IT for some time. Then, breaking it down into categories of cloud (SaaS, PaaS, IaaS).
Two great posts. Nice job John.
As enterprises evaluate building and deploying applications to the cloud, security is always part of the conversation and assessment. Windows Azure, as a cloud application hosting platform, must provide confidentiality, integrity, and availability of customer data, while also enabling transparent accountability. To help customers better understand the array of security controls implemented within Windows Azure from both the customer’s and Microsoft operations’ perspectives, a new white paper has been published – “Windows Azure Security Overview”. You can also learn more about the paper and download it at the Windows Azure Team Blog.
I am super excited!!! I recently joined (first week of July) the Windows Azure Platform Field organization focused on business development and sales. I will be working with the largest enterprise customers in the Northwest (Northern California, Oregon, Washington) based out of the Bay Area.
If you have ever read my professional blog, you know that I have been writing about cloud for the last 2 years. Its an exciting time in our industry, as the cloud platform is enabling enterprises to build and deploy rich applications, while lowering their capital investments and costs in computer infrastructure.
Cloud computing is here, and the Windows Azure Platform is leading the way!
Each month through June 2010, we’ll bring you a 90-minute Architect focused Webcast to educate on the latest trends/topics and how new technologies can align with your business needs.
December 22, 2009 at 11:00am – 12:30pm PST
Securing REST-Based Services with Access Control Service
Michele Leroux Bustamante
The Access Control Service (ACS), part of Windows Azure platform AppFabric, makes it easy to secure REST-based services using a simple set of standard protocols. In addition to enabling secure calls to REST-based services from any client, the ACS uniquely makes it possible to secure calls from client-side script, and enables federation scenarios with REST-based services. This webcast will provide a tour of ACS features and demonstrate scenarios where the ACS can be employed to secure REST-based WCF services and other web resources. You’ll learn how to configure ACS, learn how to request a token from the ACS, and learn how applications and services can authorize access based on the ACS token.
For session recordings and content from the December 2009 series, please visit http://blogs.msdn.com/sac/pages/cafe-2009-12.aspx.
For information on other events part of the Architect Cafe series, please visit http://blogs.msdn.com/sac/pages/architect-cafe.aspx.
My good friend and colleague, David Chou (Microsoft Architect Evangelist) was interviewed recently by Jeremy Geelan at Sys-Con Media on the topic of Cloud Computing.
While acknowledging that lots of work is currently being done to differentiate and integrate private and public cloud solutions, David believes that Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) is the area of Cloud Computing that will make its impact most noticeably in 2010 – especially for startups, and small-medium sized businesses.
You can find the interview here.
The Windows Azure platform, which includes a cloud services operating system – Windows Azure, a Web-based relational database in Microsoft SQL Azure (formerly SQL Services), as well as connectivity and interoperability services with .NET Services. Today, we announced a consumption-based pricing model, allowing partners and customers to pay only for the services that they consume. Here is a summary of that pricing:
- Compute @ $0.12 / hour
- Storage @ $0.15 / GB stored
- Storage Transactions @ $0.01 / 10K
- Web Edition – Up to 1GB relational database @ $9.99
- Business Edition – Up to 10GB relational database @ $99.99
- Messages @ $0.15/100K message operations, including Service Bus messages and Access Control tokens
Bandwidth across all three services will be charged at $0.10 in / $0.15 out / GB.
Additionally, the Windows Azure blog outlined an enterprise-class guarantee backed by a service-level agreement that covers service uptime, connectivity, and data availability:
“For compute, we guarantee that when you deploy two or more role instances in different fault and upgrade domains your Internet facing roles will have external connectivity at least 99.95% of the time. Additionally, we will monitor all of your individual role instances and detect within two minutes when a role instance’s process is not running and initiate corrective action. For storage, we guarantee that at least 99.9% of the time we will successfully process correctly formatted requests that we receive to add, update, read and delete data. We also guarantee that your storage accounts will have connectivity to our Internet gateway.”
Today, we also announced that Windows Azure, SQL Azure, and .NET Services will be commercially available at the Professional Developers Conference 2009, which goes on between November 17 and 19, 2009.