Announcing Xconomy’s June 24 Forum: The Promise and Reality of Cloud Computing

6/2/08Follow @wroush

Yes, “cloud computing” is a trendy buzzword. But it’s also a real technology serving as the platform for a growing number of innovative businesses. And within a few years, it seems certain, big chunks of the everyday computing done by large enterprises and average consumers will be handled in the cloud. Here’s what a few of the experts are saying:

  • Sim Simeonov, General Partner at Polaris Venture Partners: “If you plan on being successful…you should think about cloud computing from day one.” [Read more here]
  • John Landry, founder of Lead Dog Ventures, former CTO of Lotus Development, and former vice president of strategy, IBM: “These are really fundamental shifts….The whole back end is different. Leading the way is Amazon….IBM, Oracle and Microsoft don’t get it. There may be a whole new class of leaders in computing.” [More here]
  • Sun Microsystems, writing about Project Caroline, a cloud computing initiative led by vice president of technology Rich Zippel: “The objective…is to empower developers to tap in and take advantage of vast infrastructure resources owned and managed by qualified providers, be it Sun or a third-party hosting partner. For companies, there would be no hardware acquisition costs, no software licenses or upgrades to manage, no new employees or consultants to hire, no facilities to lease, no capital costs of any kind—just a metered usage or subscription fee that would be clearly defined, completely transparent, financially compelling…and brutally efficient.” [More here]
  • Irving Wladawsky-Berger, chairman emeritus of the IBM Academy of Technology: “Cloud applications should be able to provide a really high quality of experience to massive numbers of users without missing a beat. They should significantly improve the way people deal with the many tasks and devices that surround them in their everyday life—at work, at home, on-the-go, and wherever they happen to be.” [More here]
  • Nicholas Carr, author of The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, From Edison to Google: “The metaphor of ‘the cloud’ is a seductive one, but it’s also dangerous…The metaphor sustains and extends the old idealistic belief in ‘cyberspace’ as a separate, more perfect realm in which the boundaries and constraints of the real world are erased.” [Read more here]

On June 24, you can hear Simeonov, Landry, Wladawsky-Berger, Zippel, Carr, and other experts share their experiences and insights directly, at Xconomy’s afternoon forum, The Promise and Reality of Cloud Computing.

The forum, which will run from 1:00 pm to 5:30 pm at Akamai’s corporate headquarters in Kendall Square, will be Xconomy’s most ambitious and in-depth public event to date. We’ll divide our distinguished lineup of speakers into two panels—one looking at today’s largest and most ambitious manifestations of cloud computing at companies like Google, Amazon, and Yahoo, and the other gauging how entrepreneurs can make the best use of cloud infrastructures in their own businesses—punctuated by incisive keynote talks and Q&A sessions with the experts.

If you attend, we promise you’ll go home with a working definition of cloud computing and how it relates to grid computing, utility computing, and software-as-a-service; an up-to-the-minute picture of the most significant current applications of cloud computing; and a toolbox of recommendations, cautions, and contacts you can use as you begin to engage with cloud computing technology yourself.

Register between now and June 10 and we’ll give you a special early-bird rate of $95 per person. After that, the price goes up to $125. The first 50 people to register will receive a free copy of Nicholas Carr’s book, The Big Switch. As a special bonus, event host Akamai will take guests on a tour of its Network Operations Command Center, where engineers oversee the company’s edge computing network of 34,000 servers worldwide. We hope to see you there.

Wade Roush is a contributing editor at Xconomy. Follow @wroush

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