Author Nicholas Carr gets the value of cloud computing
The author who once argued that IT didn't matter anymore now says that cloud computing could be the solution to making CIOs more relevant to the business.
Nicholas Carr, author of The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google, writes about technology, economics and culture, often causing much debate with his opinions. For instance, his statements that cloud computing would eliminate the need for technical staff as business professionals could access the information they needed directly and that IT professionals were indistinguishable from one company to the next upset more than a few working in the field.
But Carr's assertions aren't without merit. IT does focus too much of its resources on maintaining operations, or "keeping the lights on," and doesn't have enough resources to allocate toward innovative projects that could drive business revenue. But maybe now with cloud computing as part of their arsenal, CIOs will be able to better demonstrate their relevance to the business, Carr suggests in a recent video interview.
"What's happening to IT departments as we move to the cloud model is very interesting and actually a lot different than fears a lot of CIOs had just a couple of years ago," Carr says. "What we are seeing is a lot of CIOs thinking cloud is making them and their departments more relevant."
Carr admittedly was skeptical of private clouds, but now he says his view has shifted to believing they are very important as a transitional stage. In fact, a 2006 demonstration by 3Tera of its AppLogic product helped Carr better understand how flexible IT would become with the help of virtualization. (CA Technologies acquired 3Tera in 2010.)
"More than anything what it showed me was that virtualization wasn't just a matter of reducing costs," Carr says. "It was an avenue toward introducing a great deal more speed into the whole IT process. It would ultimately enable companies to respond to new market opportunities very quickly. I think things have changed now to make cloud computing not only possible but inevitable."
How has cloud computing changed your relationship with the business? Have you been able to use cloud services to advance technology projects supporting the business? Please leave a comment here, let me know via Twitter @DDubie or e-mail me directly at Denise.Dubie@ca.com.
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