Welcome!

Government Cloud Authors: Craig Lowell, Pat Romanski, Kevin Jackson, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White

Related Topics: Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo, Government Cloud

Containers Expo Blog: Blog Feed Post

Fathers of Clouds – A Tribute

For more than half a century, 'cloud computing' has changed names more often than a Hollywood starlet

By Ray Holloman, NJVC - For more than half a century, cloud computing has changed names more often than a Hollywood starlet.

Utility computing. Time share. Thin client. SaaS. PaaS. IaaS. While concepts have been added and capabilities grown, cloud computing was no more invented by Amazon or other modern vendors in the last seven years reality invented by reality shows. It's simply been advance, repackaged and repurposed for as long as computer connectivity has existed.

In honor of Father's Day, NJVC looks up the family tree of cloud computing to say thank you to six of the fathers of cloud computing.  (And if you're wondering about a gift, a single tie will suffice. Certainly, these guys understand how to share.)



Dr. John McCarthy-
In the manner that genius tends to be promiscuous in emerging fields, McCarthy is often given credit as the father or influencer of many things, including Artificial Intelligence, e-commerce and time-share computing-what may be considered the earliest implementation of cloud computing. In 1961, McCarthy famously described the future of networked computing as a utility. "Computing may someday be organized as a public utility, just as the telephone system is a public utility. Each subscriber needs to pay only for the capacity he actually uses, but he has access to all programming languages characteristic of a very large system. ... Certain subscribers might offer service to other subscribers. ... The computer utility could become the basis of a new and important industry." McCarthy's vision of the computing network to come was mainframe-based in a way that somewhat missed the bull's eye, but hit the right target, regardless of the technology's name. "We keep inventing new names for timesharing," McCarthy's Stanford colleague Les Earnest told the Los Angeles Times when McCarthy died in 2011. (http://www.stanford.edu/~learnest/). "It came to be called servers. ... Now we call it cloud computing. That is still just time-sharing. John started it." For those born in the Internet era, McCarthy's familiar wobbly bonnet of gray hear and thick, black horn-rimmed glasses marked him as someone of another time, and he was-though he may have been a man of the future rather than the past. McCarthy's concept of the rise of cloud computing wasn't perfect-he shortchanged the value of the personal computer-but his implementation of timesharing set a course for cloud computing, which is only just being realized. 

J. C. R. Licklider.jpgJ.C.R. Licklider-In the late 1950s and early 1960s, even technical lexicon came adorned with the influence of Buck Rogers and the space race. Thus Licklider's 1962 declaration of a vision that would become the Internet bore the unmistakably audacious and space age sobriquet "Intergalactic Computer Network." If Licklider spoke on a vast scale, he thought on even broader one, constrained by the bandwidth of the times, not the bandwidth of mind. His Intergalactic Computer Network concept spurred the creation of the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network, a direct ancestor of the modern Internet and the globally connected world. But "Lick," as he was commonly known, understood the possibilities of cloud computing in a manner more liberating than more utilitarian vision of McCarthy's early predictions. Licklider saw the possibility of global computing as an element of the human lifescape-a tool of personal connectivity, not merely an agent of business.

Kemeny John Kemeny and Thomas Kurtz-In pseudo code the duo who created BASIC might appreciate,  "10: IF {Cloud Pioneer} Then GOTO 20    20: PRINT "THANK YOU." Dartmouth Professors Kemeny and Kurtz designed the BASIC programming language to allow students to write programs on the Dartmouth Time Sharing System (DTSS), the first successful, large-scale implementation of time-sharing, in 1964. While the technology was then still called timesharing, the underlying concepts, remote access and shared resources, have the same genetic markers of what is now cloud computing. Kemeny and Kurtz's introduction of BASIC also underscored another key concept of modern cloud computing-ease of use. By the 1970s, the DTSS supported more than 300 users-and 300 pairs of bellbottoms-simultaneously. The system lasted 35 years, before being deprecated in 1999, and proved the feasibility of the earliest cloud.

 


Marc Benioff-If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the familiar image of Benioff seated beneath a poster of the word software crossed out, must somehow be a collage. In it is an entire biography of how Benioff pioneered software as a service (SaaS) and then wrote the book on modern cloud computing (Literally. You can buy it here http://www.amazon.com/Behind-Cloud-Salesforce-com-Billion-Dollar-Company-/dp/0470521163/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1371217561&sr=1-1.).  Benioff, a vice president at Oracle by the boyish age of 26, founded Salesforce.com in 1999, delivering customer relationship management software over the Internet in a time when the screeching of dialup modems still sound tracked most Web usage. Benioff's mission, "The End of Software," is as brash as it has been predictive in an era that has seen the rise of Google Apps, Amazon Web Services and an entire SaaS industry. Salesforce.com remains the single most popular CRM tool; Benioff the single-most visible face of SaaS.

Vivek-kundra-2.jpgVivek Kundra-In the process-driven bureaucracy of federal IT, implementing organizational change can be a little like steering a battleship with a pair of wooden oars. But Kundra, the nation's first federal CIO, managed to leave an enterprise-level legacy during his two-and-a-half-year tenure, highlighted most pointedly by the acceptance of cloud in the federal IT vocabulary. Kundra's "25 Point Implementation Plan to Reform Federal IT," remains a core vision statement in federal IT; his cloud-first mandate one of era-markers in government infrastructure. Perhaps his greatest contribution, though, was simply consensus building, gaining acceptance for cloud computing among federal leadership through something of a charisma crusade. "The force of his personality [led] to the rapid adoption of cloud computing as a major driver of reform," NJVC Vice President and General Manager, Cloud Services, Kevin L. Jackson wrote in 2011. While the returns on Kundra's initiatives remain uncertain, the first chapter of the book of federal cloud will be littered with references to his work.

Reuven CohenReuven Cohen-Middle ground seems to be a blank spot on the map of Reuven Cohen when it comes to the importance of cloud to IT. "You must adapt or die," the self-titled "digital provocateur" (Read his Forbes blog of the same name here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/reuvencohen/") declared bluntly in a 2012 blog post, regarding the current cloud transformation in IT and willingness of IT to adapt in general. But Cohen, cloud's aggressively articulate hype man and one-man-IT/PR firm, is a doer, not just an advocate. In 2004, Cohen founded Enomaly, an early infrastructure-as-a-service offering, later purchased by Virtustream in 2012, where Cohen currently serves as an executive vice president. Perhaps most importantly, Cohen's techno-proselytizing, has helped cloud gain acceptance in and out of the IT community.

( Thank you. If you enjoyed this article, get free updates by email or RSS - © Copyright Kevin L. Jackson 2012)

More Stories By Kevin Jackson

Kevin Jackson, founder of the GovCloud Network, is an independent technology and business consultant specializing in mission critical solutions. He has served in various senior management positions including VP & GM Cloud Services NJVC, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and VP Program Management Office at JP Morgan Chase. His formal education includes MSEE (Computer Engineering), MA National Security & Strategic Studies and a BS Aerospace Engineering. Jackson graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1979 and retired from the US Navy earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Airborne Logistics and Airborne Command and Control. He also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide. Kevin is the founder and author of “Cloud Musings”, a widely followed blog that focuses on the use of cloud computing by the Federal government. He is also the editor and founder of “Government Cloud Computing” electronic magazine, published at Ulitzer.com. To set up an appointment CLICK HERE

Comments (0)

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.


@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Venafi, the Immune System for the Internet™ and the leading provider of Next Generation Trust Protection, will exhibit at @DevOpsSummit at 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Venafi is the Immune System for the Internet™ that protects the foundation of all cybersecurity – cryptographic keys and digital certificates – so they can’t be misused by bad guys in attacks...
The best-practices for building IoT applications with Go Code that attendees can use to build their own IoT applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Indraneel Mitra, Senior Solutions Architect & Technology Evangelist at Cognizant, provided valuable information and resources for both novice and experienced developers on how to get started with IoT and Golang in a day. He also provided information on how to use Intel Arduino Kit, Go Robotics API and AWS IoT stack to build an application tha...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings in the last year, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their back-end AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT – especially in the connected home and office. Amazon is extending its reach by building on its dominant Cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strategy, recently announced Replenishment Services, the Echo/Alexa voice recognition control platform, the 6-7 strategic...
IoT generates lots of temporal data. But how do you unlock its value? You need to discover patterns that are repeatable in vast quantities of data, understand their meaning, and implement scalable monitoring across multiple data streams in order to monetize the discoveries and insights. Motif discovery and deep learning platforms are emerging to visualize sensor data, to search for patterns and to build application that can monitor real time streams efficiently. In his session at @ThingsExpo, ...
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) and Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO) have entered into a definitive agreement under which Verizon will acquire Yahoo's operating business for approximately $4.83 billion in cash, subject to customary closing adjustments. Yahoo informs, connects and entertains a global audience of more than 1 billion monthly active users** -- including 600 million monthly active mobile users*** through its search, communications and digital content products. Yahoo also co...
There will be new vendors providing applications, middleware, and connected devices to support the thriving IoT ecosystem. This essentially means that electronic device manufacturers will also be in the software business. Many will be new to building embedded software or robust software. This creates an increased importance on software quality, particularly within the Industrial Internet of Things where business-critical applications are becoming dependent on products controlled by software. Qua...
In addition to all the benefits, IoT is also bringing new kind of customer experience challenges - cars that unlock themselves, thermostats turning houses into saunas and baby video monitors broadcasting over the internet. This list can only increase because while IoT services should be intuitive and simple to use, the delivery ecosystem is a myriad of potential problems as IoT explodes complexity. So finding a performance issue is like finding the proverbial needle in the haystack.
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
Large scale deployments present unique planning challenges, system commissioning hurdles between IT and OT and demand careful system hand-off orchestration. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jeff Smith, Senior Director and a founding member of Incenergy, will discuss some of the key tactics to ensure delivery success based on his experience of the last two years deploying Industrial IoT systems across four continents.
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develo...
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
Basho Technologies has announced the latest release of Basho Riak TS, version 1.3. Riak TS is an enterprise-grade NoSQL database optimized for Internet of Things (IoT). The open source version enables developers to download the software for free and use it in production as well as make contributions to the code and develop applications around Riak TS. Enhancements to Riak TS make it quick, easy and cost-effective to spin up an instance to test new ideas and build IoT applications. In addition to...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.
IoT is rapidly changing the way enterprises are using data to improve business decision-making. In order to derive business value, organizations must unlock insights from the data gathered and then act on these. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, and Peter Shashkin, Head of Development Department at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how one organization leveraged IoT, cloud technology and data analysis to improve customer experiences and effi...
"We've discovered that after shows 80% if leads that people get, 80% of the conversations end up on the show floor, meaning people forget about it, people forget who they talk to, people forget that there are actual business opportunities to be had here so we try to help out and keep the conversations going," explained Jeff Mesnik, Founder and President of ContentMX, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
With 15% of enterprises adopting a hybrid IT strategy, you need to set a plan to integrate hybrid cloud throughout your infrastructure. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Steven Dreher, Director of Solutions Architecture at Green House Data, discussed how to plan for shifting resource requirements, overcome challenges, and implement hybrid IT alongside your existing data center assets. Highlights included anticipating workload, cost and resource calculations, integrating services on both sides...
Manufacturers are embracing the Industrial Internet the same way consumers are leveraging Fitbits – to improve overall health and wellness. Both can provide consistent measurement, visibility, and suggest performance improvements customized to help reach goals. Fitbit users can view real-time data and make adjustments to increase their activity. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mark Bernardo Professional Services Leader, Americas, at GE Digital, discussed how leveraging the Industrial Internet a...
Big Data engines are powering a lot of service businesses right now. Data is collected from users from wearable technologies, web behaviors, purchase behavior as well as several arbitrary data points we’d never think of. The demand for faster and bigger engines to crunch and serve up the data to services is growing exponentially. You see a LOT of correlation between “Cloud” and “Big Data” but on Big Data and “Hybrid,” where hybrid hosting is the sanest approach to the Big Data Infrastructure pro...
"My role is working with customers, helping them go through this digital transformation. I spend a lot of time talking to banks, big industries, manufacturers working through how they are integrating and transforming their IT platforms and moving them forward," explained William Morrish, General Manager Product Sales at Interoute, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.