As in Nature, Clouds Come in Many Shapes

Cloud computing expands on the many existing choices that are already available to IT for the delivery of IT services. Currently, we have RISC, x86, ATOM and ARM processors. We have Windows, Linux, UNIX, and mainframe operating systems. We also have a number of choices for application servers, databases, and development languages. The good thing about having these choices is that it allows architects to pick the best fit (either client-server or mainframe platforms) for the delivery of IT services (applications). Cloud computing is really no different. There are a number of different cloud services and delivery models, and each should be evaluated for a best fit for the targeted application. Different cloud services will cater to different security profiles, different developer environments, different levels of control, and different kinds of applications. Each cloud service model has different business and IT benefits and challenges.

Private Cloud Technologies: Moving Away from a Traditional IT Model

In a traditional Information Technology (IT) model, new IT assets are acquired in support of specific applications. This model has had the unfortunate side effect of casting IT into the role of a cost center. As such, there has been little flexibility within IT to make broad platform changes such as the adoption and deployment of private cloud technologies.

The Private Cloud Journey

“Private cloud adoption is a journey both from a technical and business perspective.” At the recent AFCEA Cloud Lifecycle Management Symposium in DC, the discussion on government cloud computing ranged from acquisition policies to building the roadmaps in which NIST and government guidelines are being centered around. The vision of these roadmaps is to “easily locate desired IT services, rapidly procure access to the services, and use the services to deliver innovative mission solutions.” But with all of the service providers and offerings available, how can government standardize and corral all of these into one simple menu of options that meets individual agency requirements? How will agencies define a successful cloud program? What are the strategies to assure success?

Technology Implementation goes Hand-in-Hand with Therapy, Steps 4 and 5

In the first blog entry of this series, I used this AdultSwim video on YouTube to outline the five stages of grief and then related them to the five steps to a successful technology implementation. The subsequent entries included have gone into more detail for each stage and step – Needs/Denial, Process/Anger, and Training/Bargaining. That brings us to this final entry in this series, which will cover: Step 4: Technology Rollout; or, Stage 4: Depression Stage 5: Rallying the Users; or Stage 5: Acceptance Along the way I’ve drawn a comparison between Technology Implementation, Therapy and the Kübler-Ross Model for Grief. Implementing new technology in your agency, or any organization, can be hard and if not done right can have catastrophic consequences. Don’t believe me? Just ask Hershey; yes, the chocolate company. Hershey Food Corp spent $112 million and 30 months of implementation effort, however, when they attempted to go live in July 1999, the company experienced catastrophic failures with sales order processing, which had a crippling effect in shipping delays and deliveries of incomplete orders. That’s a lot of melting chocolate.

Technology Implementation Kübler-Ross Model, Step 1/Stage 1

This is the second entry in a six-part blog series. In my last blog entry in this series, I humorously drew connections between Technology Implementation, Therapy and the Kübler-Ross Model for Grief[TR1] (here is the video again, just because it is hilarious: [c2] Now, I want to follow-through on that analogy to show the specific connections between the five steps to a successful implementation and the five stages of grief: Step 1: Assess Needs First and Technology Second; or, Stage 1: Denial

Technology Implementation Goes Hand-in-Hand with Therapy

I was asked to speak last week at a Women in Technology event on the Intersection of Technology and Marketing. As one of four panelists, I had only 7 minutes to present an idea and then field questions from the audience. This presentation was a big enough hit that I thought I should share it here. Typically, I speak to how DLT uses technology to monitor marketing metrics and get the best results. Since another panelist was taking that topic, this time I spoke to some basic principles for getting the best results out of implementing a new technology, any technology – software/hardware/SaaS. Whether for marketing or any other business need, there are certain truths that are unavoidable. The first truth is that implementing new technology can be hard. The second is that if not done right, it can have catastrophic consequences for your organization. And, last, there is a human factor in every implementation that must be taken into consideration.