On October 27, 2009 in Palo Alto at Tibco Software, the SDForum Cloud Services SIG presented â€œThe Federal Government and Cloud Computingâ€. Bernard Golden, CEO of HyperStratus and Joshua McKenty, Technical Architect of NASAâ€™s Nebula Project talked about the new federal commitment to cloud computing.
Bernard Golden recently spent a week in Washington, DC, meeting with Congressional Committee staff members and various Federal agencies to discuss their cloud computing initiatives and concerns. Bernard shared the status of the overall Federal cloud computing initiative, his recommendations to the groups he met with, and upcoming milestones and deliverables for the Federal cloud. He thinks Federal cloud computing efforts and commercial cloud ecosystem will integrate and both will benefit.
Golden spoke about Vivek Kundra, who became the first Federal CIO and is strongly committed to the cloud. When Kundra took over he found hundreds of data centers all over the country. He wanted not just structural efficiency but operational efficiency. On his first day he called a meeting and asked the attendees about cloud computing. When they first group said it couldn’t be done, Kundra fired them and called in the next group. Not surprisingly, they said it could be done.
Golden met with staff of congressional committee for the House Energy and Commerce. They are concerned about network neutrality now supported by FCC and how to get more bandwidth for all users.
Golden then met with staffers for the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs as well the Senate Intelligence Committees. They are very concerned about security in the cloud. Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) certification at the application level may not work well in the cloud. He thinks cybercrime can be fought with transparency.
Golden visited the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and Government Services Administration (GSA). The GSA has an approved list that you want to get on if you want to sell software to the government. They now have App.gov, an approved cloud computing offering so all government agencies can get on demand cloud services functionality. For example, the Department of Interior can use a credit card to use Salesforce.com. Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) is available now and soon Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS). The bidding process is complex but Golden expects lots of demand.
Department of Defense is rolling out Rapid Access Computing Environment (RACE) as an internal cloud for agile computing. They see it as a faster and cheaper alternative to traditional purchasing of computing services.
Joshua McKenty told of his work as Technical Architect on Nebula Project, a Cloud Computing pilot under development at NASA Ames Research Center. He designed the service capabilities in the platform ensuring robustness, scalability, and cost-effectiveness. Nebula integrates a set of open-source components into a seamless, self-service platform. It provides high-capacity computing, storage and network connectivity.Â It uses a virtualized, scalable approach to achieve cost and energy efficiencies. The fully integrated Nebula components provide rapid development of policy-compliant and secure web applications. It encourages code reuse, improves coherence and cohesiveness of NASA’s collaborative web applications. Nebula will offer cost-effective Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). As a hybrid cloud, external researchers will have consistent tool sets and high-speed data connections to collaborate with NASA.
Copyright 2009 DJ Cline All rights reserved.