Cloud’s True Killer App (Mitigating the Steroid Effect)
Long before the phrase Cloud Computing was shortened to “The Cloud”, many of us were working in an earlier, albeit less jacked, version of this phenomenon. It was in play across all major verticals even then, although the hacking pandemic was not yet recognized as such (“When Worlds Collide” ).
In those days the combination of “pay as you go”, and “utility computing” wasn’t yet referred to as “The Cloud”. Back then it was called Application Service Provider (ASP), and/or Software as a Service (SaaS).
What we now call the Cloud is exploding like a teenage power lifter gobbling steroids, getting big really fast, while risking the dangerous “no pain, no gain” side effects that tax unnaturally rapid development… and these risks are exacerbated when gains in size & speed come via performance enhancing trends that lack adequate safety precautions… another tech bubble?
To extend the steroids metaphor, cloud driven gains in raw power and muscle mass are like bulging corporate profits growing at the expense of vital internal organs – one serious injury can tear down years of hard work, as customers squeeze their wallets in fear of the next big security breach.
IT provisioning (the business aspect of cloud computing) has the potential to break up traditional value chains, making room for profitable new business models. Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) have a huge opportunity for top line growth and margin expansion – but this potential bonanza is relentlessly stalked by hacker aggression, the dark side of tech innovation.
With appropriate middleware, cloud computing applications seem limitless, yet CSPs can’t pump up to their full potential unless customers in Big Data verticals (industrial, government, healthcare, energy, etc.) believe that it’s safe to outsource mission critical apps to CSPs.
Over years of recruiting senior management for breakthrough security companies, I’ve seen shiny new apps quickly lose their luster as funding dries up, and/or adoption rates slow to a trickle at the first sign of a major breach.
Security remains the unsung hero, and Cloud’s true killer app because, in the long term, it holds the key to either pumping up, or slowing down deal flow strength!