Welcome!

SDN Journal Authors: Skytap Blog, Lori MacVittie, Carmen Gonzalez, Sematext Sematext, Pete Pickerill

Related Topics: Cloud Expo, Java, SOA & WOA, Security, Big Data Journal, SDN Journal

Cloud Expo: Article

Cloud as Delivery Vehicle – The Next Wave of the Internet

Meet FireHost at Cloud Expo New York

"While cost has traditionally been a foundational benefit of the cloud, we believe that other factors can play a more important part in defining the cloud of tomorrow," said Todd Gleason, Vice President of Technology at FireHost, in this exclusive Q&A with Cloud Expo conference chairs Larry Carvalho and Vanessa Alvarez. "We believe that the generalist cloud provider - those low-cost commodity clouds that created price competition and insecure clouds - are going to either be gobbled up or beaten up as the industry evolves from this generalist mentality to focus on specialist clouds that have a particular focus."

Cloud Computing Journal: How are cloud standards playing a role in expanding adoption among users? Are standards helping new business models for service providers?

Todd Gleason: Standardization is important, but we're concerned because security desperately needs to be part of this effort. It is not addressed enough, if at all. Much of the open standards work in cloud and other IT technologies traditionally is not security-conscious, making adoption riskier than many want to admit or truly understand. So, while standards are a good thing, we believe security should be baked in at their inception. We advocate for innovation, but it's important that the innovative spirit is not blind to the need to protect vendors and customers.

Cloud Computing Journal: How are hybrid clouds evolving to allow the coexistence of private and public clouds? What are the challenges to meeting a true hybrid cloud scenario?

Gleason: Too much attention and marketing real estate has been paid to debating the merits of public, private and hybrid clouds. Definitions of what's public, what's private and what's hybrid are wide-reaching and are often created to suit a vendor's point of view rather than an educational, objective delineation for the industry. From where we sit, use cases and security are key to disarming this debate. The conversation needs to shift from which model is best in general to which one is appropriate for an individual vendor, provider, or customer, and it must address and incorporate security because regardless of the model chosen, a cloud is insecure unless it's built secure. Use cases vary for industries and individual companies, but security is a common denominator and applicable for all of them. This is where the industry discussion needs to shift.

Cloud Computing Journal: Are on-premise software vendors successfully migrating their business model to a SaaS model? What are the challenges faced in this journey?

Gleason: Most are and the bigger question is how effective will they be at delivering from the cloud and will it be secure. Will they expand their business model and provide infrastructure, or will they stay in their niche as software only players? And for those who do not migrate, will they become more inefficient and outdated?

Cloud as a delivery vehicle is the next wave of the Internet, especially as automation, software techniques, and infrastructures adapt toward applications and servicing their performance more and more. The efficiencies of today are miles ahead of an insulated, on-premise software solution - a situation that gets much sweeter when security is architected into the infrastructure. However, we are not even close to being a truly application-centric world.

Truthfully, though, we need to focus on what the customer wants. Every model will be viable to various customers, so some software vendors may become irrelevant due to the cloud providing a better way to service the customer's needs. The cloud industry can be too hung up on terms such as hybrid, public, SaaS or PaaS. Instead, we have to focus on the customers' needs and their applications that run their business and give them competitive advantages operationally and provide a truly seamless experience.

Cloud Computing Journal: What are the challenges for end users to adopt a new model for application development using Platform as a Service? Are vendors doing enough to meet their needs?

Gleason: Platforms are important to reduce time-to-market for SaaS or internal use cases, and it's good to see the industry shifting from infrastructures being the center of the universe to how they can be architected to service applications in a more on-demand, dynamic, intelligent manner. But, again, where is security in the discussion? It's not anywhere to be found in the majority of industry conversations and vendor communications. It badly needs to be.

In addition to security, there are two other big to-dos that need to be addressed: orchestration and inter-cloud technology. To make applications work well across infrastructures, those infrastructures must work well together in an inter-cloud fashion. This brings us back to security. Businesses will have many clouds, as will their customers. The weakest link is the most insecure cloud, so change must happen to bring security into the larger, strategic conversations rather than focusing so much on architecting an infrastructure or specific software techniques.

Cloud Computing Journal: With several vendors lowering costs for infrastructure, is there a way for new cloud service providers entering this space to make money?

Gleason: While cost has traditionally been a foundational benefit of the cloud, we believe that other factors can play a more important part in defining the cloud of tomorrow. We believe that the generalist cloud provider - those low-cost commodity clouds that created price competition and insecure clouds - are going to either be gobbled up or beaten up as the industry evolves from this generalist mentality to focus on specialist clouds that have a particular focus. For FireHost, that's security. We evolved out of the need for security and have created an infrastructure that provides an advanced security architecture, top security personnel and compliance expertise for customers that are security- and compliance-driven.

•   •   •

Todd Gleason, Vice President of Technology at FireHost, is a central figure in continuously innovating and architecting the secure cloud infrastructure for FireHost and its customers. He brings 15 years of global IT and R&D experience, including deep knowledge of security, cloud, networking, compute, virtualization, storage, and application delivery technologies.

Gleason is driven by the notion that customers ultimately care about servicing their applications to perform efficiently in a secure environment. With this in mind, Gleason has displayed a knack for understanding the latest technology trends in the industry, synthesizing what is applicable for FireHost's customers, and incorporating relevant technology into the company's cloud infrastructure to ensure businesses' applications and data are protected in a cutting-edge, secure cloud. Gleason has helped redefine industry expectations about performance, security, and compliance in the cloud. His creative approach to architecting FireHost's secure cloud proves that security can be incorporated without compromising infrastructure performance, which improves customers' risk management while maintaining thrifty usage of infrastructure resources.

Prior to his role with FireHost, Gleason worked as director of information technology at Panini America, formerly Donruss Trading Cards, which is now a subsidiary of the global Panini conglomerate. There he implemented a high-performance infrastructure and unique business applications enabling rapid high-quality production workflows and integration into the Panini global business. Gleason holds a degree in computer information systems from Remington College.

More Stories By Pat Romanski

News Desk compiles and publishes breaking news stories, press releases and latest news articles as they happen.

Comments (1)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
ScriptRock makes GuardRail, a DevOps-ready platform for configuration monitoring. Realizing we were spending way too much time digging up, cataloguing, and tracking machine configurations, we began writing our own scripts and tools to handle what is normally an enormous chore. Then we took the concept a step further, giving it a beautiful interface and making it simple enough for our bosses to understand. We named it GuardRail after its function - to allow businesses to move fast and stay sa...
SYS-CON Media announced today that Skytap blog on "DevOps Journal" exceeded 84,000 story reads. DevOps Journal is focused on this critical enterprise IT topic in the world of cloud computing. DevOps Journal brings valuable information to DevOps professionals who are transforming the way enterprise IT is done. Noel Wurst is the managing content editor at Skytap. Skytap provides SaaS-based dev/test environments to the enterprise. Skytap solution removes the inefficiencies and constraints that comp...
SYS-CON Events announced today Isomorphic Software, the global leader in high-end, web-based business applications, will exhibit at SYS-CON's DevOps Summit 2015 New York, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Isomorphic Software is the global leader in high-end, web-based business applications. We develop, market, and support the SmartClient & Smart GWT HTML5/Ajax platform, combining the productivity and performance of traditional desktop software ...
SYS-CON Media announced today that Sematext launched a popular blog feed on DevOps Journal with over 6,000 story reads over the weekend. DevOps Journal is focused on this critical enterprise IT topic in the world of cloud computing. DevOps Journal brings valuable information to DevOps professionals who are transforming the way enterprise IT is done. Sematext is a globally distributed organization that builds innovative Cloud and On Premises solutions for performance monitoring, alerting an...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudian, Inc., the leading provider of hybrid cloud storage solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudian, Inc., is a Foster City, California - based software company specializing in cloud storage software. The main product is Cloudian, an Amazon S3-compliant cloud object storage platform, the bedrock of cloud computing systems, that enables c...
Leysin American School is an exclusive, private boarding school located in Leysin, Switzerland. Leysin selected an OpenStack-powered, private cloud as a service to manage multiple applications and provide development environments for students across the institution. Seeking to meet rigid data sovereignty and data integrity requirements while offering flexible, on-demand cloud resources to users, Leysin identified OpenStack as the clear choice to round out the school's cloud strategy. Additional...
The BPM world is going through some evolution or changes where traditional business process management solutions really have nowhere to go in terms of development of the road map. In this demo at 15th Cloud Expo, Kyle Hansen, Director of Professional Services at AgilePoint, shows AgilePoint’s unique approach to dealing with this market circumstance by developing a rapid application composition or development framework.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Windstream, a leading provider of advanced network and cloud communications, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Windstream (Nasdaq: WIN), a FORTUNE 500 and S&P 500 company, is a leading provider of advanced network communications, including cloud computing and managed services, to businesses nationwide. The company also offers broadband, p...
In high-production environments where release cycles are measured in hours or minutes — not days or weeks — there's little room for mistakes and no room for confusion. Everyone has to understand what's happening, in real time, and have the means to do whatever is necessary to keep applications up and running optimally. DevOps is a high-stakes world, but done well, it delivers the agility and performance to significantly impact business competitiveness.
"Our premise is Docker is not enough. That's not a bad thing - we actually love Docker. At ActiveState all our products are based on open source technology and Docker is an up-and-coming piece of open source technology," explained Bart Copeland, President & CEO of ActiveState Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at Cloud Expo®, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The Internet of Things is not new. Historically, smart businesses have used its basic concept of leveraging data to drive better decision making and have capitalized on those insights to realize additional revenue opportunities. So, what has changed to make the Internet of Things one of the hottest topics in tech? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Gray, Director, Embedded and Internet of Things, discussed the underlying factors that are driving the economics of intelligent systems. Discover ...
"BSQUARE is in the business of selling software solutions for smart connected devices. It's obvious that IoT has moved from being a technology to being a fundamental part of business, and in the last 18 months people have said let's figure out how to do it and let's put some focus on it, " explained Dave Wagstaff, VP & Chief Architect, at BSQUARE Corporation, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The major cloud platforms defy a simple, side-by-side analysis. Each of the major IaaS public-cloud platforms offers their own unique strengths and functionality. Options for on-site private cloud are diverse as well, and must be designed and deployed while taking existing legacy architecture and infrastructure into account. Then the reality is that most enterprises are embarking on a hybrid cloud strategy and programs. In this Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo (http://www.CloudComputingExpo.com...
Verizon Enterprise Solutions is simplifying the cloud-purchasing experience for its clients, with the launch of Verizon Cloud Marketplace, a key foundational component of the company's robust ecosystem of enterprise-class technologies. The online storefront will initially feature pre-built cloud-based services from AppDynamics, Hitachi Data Systems, Juniper Networks, PfSense and Tervela. Available globally to enterprises using Verizon Cloud, Verizon Cloud Marketplace provides a one-stop shop fo...
The move in recent years to cloud computing services and architectures has added significant pace to the application development and deployment environment. When enterprise IT can spin up large computing instances in just minutes, developers can also design and deploy in small time frames that were unimaginable a few years ago. The consequent move toward lean, agile, and fast development leads to the need for the development and operations sides to work very closely together. Thus, DevOps become...
SYS-CON Events announced today that IDenticard will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. IDenticard™ is the security division of Brady Corp (NYSE: BRC), a $1.5 billion manufacturer of identification products. We have small-company values with the strength and stability of a major corporation. IDenticard offers local sales, support and service to our customers across the United States and Canada...
SYS-CON Events announced today that AIC, a leading provider of OEM/ODM server and storage solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. AIC is a leading provider of both standard OTS, off-the-shelf, and OEM/ODM server and storage solutions. With expert in-house design capabilities, validation, manufacturing and production, AIC's broad selection of products are highly flexible and are conf...

ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --  IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that it is bringing a greater level of control, security and flexibility to cloud-based application development and delivery with a single-tenant version of Bluemix, IBM's

AppZero has announced that its award-winning application migration software is now fully qualified within the Microsoft Azure Certified program. AppZero has undergone extensive technical evaluation with Microsoft Corp., earning its designation as Microsoft Azure Certified. As a result of AppZero's work with Microsoft, customers are able to easily find, purchase and deploy AppZero from the Azure Marketplace. With just a few clicks, users have an Azure-based solution for moving applications to the...
“In the past year we've seen a lot of stabilization of WebRTC. You can now use it in production with a far greater degree of certainty. A lot of the real developments in the past year have been in things like the data channel, which will enable a whole new type of application," explained Peter Dunkley, Technical Director at Acision, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.