Private Cloud: It’s Not About ROI

Most private cloud discussions revolve around the return on investment of the architecture. Many discussions begin and quickly end with ROI. The reason is that ROI is very difficult to show in real numbers for any IT investment, but more so when the majority of the costs are soft costs.

ROI is an important factor and can’t be left out of discussions, but it’s not the only factor and likely not the most important factor.

To read the rest see the blog on Network Computing (no registration required): http://www.networkcomputing.com/private-cloud/231601280

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The Business Suit: Spinach and Kryptonite

For VMworld this year I decided to pack heavy.  I spent the week in suits rather than my typical IT polos and jeans, slacks and shirts type attire.  No particular reasoning for the change although the factors were along the lines of: change of pace, stepping it up, and ‘It’s Vegas Baby!.’  To say the least it was an interesting experience being at VMworld in a suit for the first time.

The IT community is typically a dressed down society, we toil away in data centers, call centers, and cubicles and have no need for dress up.  Jeans and a polo is business and flip flops put us in business casual.  This means a suit is out of the norm.  VMworld only amplifies that as the walking, back-to-back sessions, and being away from the home office make the case for casual.  This means wearing a suit is not necessarily unique but noticeable, especially on the show floor.

 

The Spinach:

Like spinach for Popeye the suit had its benefits.  I’m a firm believer in you can’t be overdressed (even if I don’t heed that often) and Vegas is no exception.  During customer engagements, partner meetings, and vendor video shoots the suit boosted my confidence and professional appearance.  It even had benefits on the gaming floor as pit bosses were much more accommodating of special requests such as opening new tables, raising maximum bets or lowering minimums than I recall in t-shirt and jeans.  You definitely can’t overdress in Vegas.

 

The Kryptonite:

Like Kryptonite for Superman while working the booth or having discussions with vendor engineers I found that the suit downgraded my status as an engineer.  By that I mean I had to prove I was technical, rather than sales, business development, etc.  the immediate assumption of customers while I was at the WWT booth was that I was the sales guy and they needed to find the engineer.  It was definitely an interesting experience.  I had a lot more high level sales pitches, marketing fluff etc. thrown at me while walking the floor than I have in past years.  Even more interesting was that I did not get harassed by the ‘booth babes’ as much.  That brings me to my next point.

 

Booth Babes:

I’ve always enjoyed the attractive models known as booth babes that many vendors hire to scan badges and attract attention at trade shows.  IT is a very male heavy industry and I looked at it as harmless marketing.  I didn’t however think of it from the big picture perspective.  Matt Simmons enlightened me with one of his post show blogs: http://www.standalone-sysadmin.com/blog/2011/09/seriously-stop-with-the-booth-babes/.  The booth babes themselves may be harmless but the way in which they train us to stereotype women in a booth is not.  In a similar way to the way in which my suit identified me as non-technical, booth babes cause us to look at women working trade show booths as non-technical or eye candy, that is a very bad thing (quick note I’m not equating the suit discrimination to sexual discrimination only drawing a parallel to the way our brains begin to stereotype.) There are some amazing women in IT and we should be encouraging more to join the ranks, not making an inhospitable atmosphere.

I encourage you to read matt’s blog and take part in ‘Operation Eliminate booth Babes.’

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How to Boost Cloud Reliability

Clouds fail. That’s a fact. But if your company uses business apps that are tied to the availability of public cloud services, you can—and must—take steps to mitigate these failures by getting schooled on a few key factors:  service-level agreements (SLAs), redundancy options, application design, and the type of service being used. We’ll outline how these factors affect the availability of your applications in the cloud…

 

Read my full article in the August issue of Network Computing (For IT by IT) (Requires a free registration, my apologies.)

http://www.informationweek.com/nwcdigital/nwcaug11?k=nwchp&cid=onedit_ds_nwchp

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