Shel is swell!
If you need data storage—and you need it now—you have two options: uploading the data to a cloud service (estimated time: 15 minutes), or developing a high-speed, high capacity storage system (estimated time: 15 months).
15 minutes vs. 15 months.
It's a no-brainer.
And yet, some people in higher education still believe using university resources to build a system that will be obsolete by the time it's operational trumps investments in next-gen technologies.
"Cloud services are risky," they say. "We have the talent, skills, and expertise to build a secure, elite system," they cry. "All we have to do is mine the ore, smelt the metal, shape the boxes, assemble the components, power the data center, design the operating systems, administer the services, configure the databases, write the software, and voila! Instant technical solution!”
But what we all know (and they'll never admit) is that this isn't about security, "doing it the right way," or customizing solutions to meet "unique" needs. It's just a way to save a buck, and preserve capital in an era where the cost of baseline PC is less than $500.
It's time for universities to start working smarter, not harder, or risk being left behind.
In the next five years, investment in cloud computing technologies will exceed $250 billion per year. How do you think homegrown and locally implemented commercial solutions will be able to compete against that? How will these solutions serve the ever-evolving needs of research and education communities? Most storage solutions in higher education are developed on a shoestring and maintained on less. Whereas quality cloud providers rise and fall on the ability to provide high performance, secure solutions—24x7x365.
It's time for us to come together as a community, and engage cloud providers. We have the power to influence design. We have the power to influence solutions. We don't have to wait for a team to deliver capacity, performance, and functionality in 15 months. We can have it in 15 minutes.
Do you want to exist on the cutting edge, or do you simply want to talk about it?
Vote cloud now!
Cate is great!
Cloud computing—what a genius idea!
IU has a wealth of critical and sensitive data and applications. So it only makes sense to move everything away from our oversight and control and into the "cloud."
Sure, we'll have to intermingle our data with that from other organizations (about which we know nothing).
Yes, our data could become a clearly identified target subject to attack from anywhere and the laws of the countries in which it resides.
And you're right – we'll have no control over where these resources are located, encrypted, or disclosed to government authorities.
But our data will be centrally accessible and widely distributed!
Ask yourself, is all of that worth it? Is instant accessibility via the Internet—the same Internet that streams movies, music, virtual worlds, malware, and porn—important enough to give away possession and control of our most valuable assets?
If so, it's time to sign a contract with a major provider (preferably one with a history of security vulnerabilities, or, even better, no experience at all) that gives us no control over our own data and absolves them of all responsibility for its security. Sure, the legal, jurisdictional, technological, and reliability issues haven't been hammered out yet, but this is a win-win, right?
Cloud computing is folly—a fool's game that makes Captain Ahab's quest for Moby Dick look sensible in comparison. Don't be lured in by its slick marketing and promises of convenient access. That billowy puff of cotton is nothing more than a ruse—a façade that invites us to throw caution to the wind and leave our most valuable data unprotected. A war on our digital kingdoms is coming, and you can't afford to be on the wrong side.
When you hear "cloud now," do the right thing.
Vote cloud no!