Over the past decade, the smartphone alone has introduced an exponential extension to how people connect with other people. More recently though, we’ve seen smartphone development focus less on new features and more on improving performance and presentation of existing features. The current exponential wave of innovation is already underway, and it’s called the Internet of Things (IoT). An example of IoT in use today is a physician having the ability to collaborate with patients over instant video. That physician is now able to greatly improve their ability to provide healthcare and by leveraging IoT, she’s not only able to see the patient virtually, but also see and monitor the patient’s vital statistics like blood pressure, glucose levels, heart rate and more. This is the Internet of Things, and this is the future.
These real-time opportunities bring with them an immediate challenge of delivering “off the shelf” technology products, available today, to meet new business challenges.
We sat down with our own Raphael Meyerowitz, AVP Data Center Technical Services during EMC World 2014 this week in Las Vegas to get his thoughts on application integration, security and client opportunities.
Q: What is Presidio’s background with EMC and Microsoft?
Presidio is the second largest EMC partner in NA, the largest VCE partner in NA and is a gold Microsoft partner. We have been an EMC and Microsoft partner for 10 years and have extensive expertise around designing and deploying Microsoft solutions on EMC hardware. Ensuring that the hardware and software is designed to support the load of the applications is critical to project success.
Q: Application integration and security are often stated as customer concerns – what is Presidio’s experience with customers in regards to these concerns?
Presidio starts off every engagement with strategic engagement framework. Our strategic engagement framework ensures that early on in the engagement that we are accounting for all the applications that integrate with customer’s environment. We recently performed an Office 365 assessment for a customer and we determined that they were not ready to move to the cloud due to application, security and compliance restrictions. An example of this is a staffing company that an application that required administrative access to their exchange environment. 365 could not provide the access that was needed.
Sometimes I wonder how an economic powerhouse like the United States of America can shut down for two weeks because of politics at the expense of the services given to the citizens? Sure, the media picks up on it and it rides the news cycle for a little while, but, everyone knows that it won’t last and at some point everyone will go back to work once the political leverage has been exercised. In January, both the House and Senate passed a bill that will fund the government at least until the end of the fiscal year 2014. The budgets for all branches of our government are slowly receiving their money and over the next six months, will be spending $1.1 trillion dollars. The question that is top of mind for many federal IT managers is how to stretch these dollars and somewhat avoid the budget funding issues that closures and budget cycles create. .
The solution is something that is very common in the private enterprise world. They call it “leasing" and the federal government calls it “payment plans”. Payment Plans are nothing new to federal contracting officers, but, they are often misunderstood and have a negative reaction when discussed. The main benefits are firm, fixed pricing for multi-year contracts, predictable budget and planning, decreases total cost of ownership, reduces administrative costs and streamlines procurement cycles.
Cisco recently invited Presidio to participate in their steering committee of the Cisco Internet of Things (IoT) Healthcare Working Group. Representatives from GE healthcare, Qualcomm, ePlus, Samsung and Chevron will be in attendance at the group’s kickoff meeting this week in San Jose. Presidio is just one of two solution providers on the committee.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is an initiative undertaken by Cisco to connect the vast network of physical devices that can be accessed through the Internet. Given that almost all electronic devices contain embedded technology, IoT seeks to connect them and bring them online so they can all communicate with each other. When devices can represent themselves digitally, they can be controlled from anywhere, which means more data gathered from more places and more ways to increase efficiency.
Within the healthcare IoT initiative, we seek to connect devices to improve patient outcomes and lower the cost of delivering healthcare. As examples, think of the benefits of a medical kit for a home-based patient automatically uploading blood-glucose and blood pressure readings for physicians to review. Or if the information of care received from multiple physicians for one patient were fed into a central system to enhance the ability for coordinated care. These changes could revolutionize the way we receive future healthcare.
When I began my career in technology in 1999, companies were establishing their web presence. I was in sales back then and the number of servers bought to support websites was staggering. If you were in the industry at that time, I’m sure you remember. If your company wasn’t on the web, it was on the road to the web. If you had just a smidgen of HTML programming experience, you suddenly found yourself as the web administrator.
Similarly today, everyone seems to have a ‘cloud’ initiative of some sort. If you aren’t “in the cloud”, you are figuring out how to get there. I’ve witnessed three main approaches over the last year.
During Partner Summit this past week, I had the opportunity to sit in on the Cisco session called “Monetizing the New Security Model” and I thought was really well done. A lot of the areas discussed were items that I discuss with customers on a regular basis. Our customers face increasing security challenges due to a number of factors including: the complexity of their networks, better equipped attackers and a larger attack surface due to the transition to mobile, cloud and virtual infrastructures.
Cisco is continuing to transition to the Attack Continuum Model that came along with the SourceFire acquisition. This model approaches security in three stages: Before, During and After an attack. This is an important concept as we're never going to truly prevent all attacks from being successful in our environments. We need to make sure that we have the right pieces in place so that if we are compromised we have the ability to detect it quickly and contain it. We also need the ability to understand the full scope of the attack so we can quickly remediate it. This can be the difference between having to rebuild just a few machines or having to rebuild your entire security infrastructure because you ended up on the front page of the newspaper and on the nightly news.
Cisco’s announcement at Partner Summit this week that it is going build the world's largest intercloud is a timely announcement in what has been an exciting time at Presidio.
We are seeing real traction with our Presidio Capacity on Demand economic consumption model, a solution that combines the security and performance of a private cloud with the capacity on demand and costing model of a public cloud. Why did we build this solution and what are our plans to integrate with Cisco Intercloud?
In the simplest terms, public cloud is attractive because of convenience, the ability to acquire IT resources on demand and pay as you use them in a utility fashion. This is why many organizations are finding departments circumventing their own IT to get these services from public cloud providers. Although convenient, this introduces new issues like security, ownership of data and compliance to regulations. There are also performance and vendor lock-in concerns with the public cloud. All this points to a private cloud environment, single tenant and completely controlled by the customer. Yet we cannot ignore the benefits of a public cloud model where you can essentially rent resources for a period of time or to get through that spike in your resource requirements, be it end of quarter processing or resources to support a big event.
The Cisco Global Partner Summit 2014 is being held in Las Vegas this week from March 25th through 27th. I had the opportunity to attend Tuesday’s general session…almost 2,000 miles away from the comfort of my office.
Cisco has creatively established a new communication channel to get their strategic and channel program messages out to the global Partner community via the Cisco Virtual Partner Summit. This virtual entry to the sessions provided an experience like you were actually at the conference. The chat tool created an interactive engagement with the virtual audience. Cisco definitely hit a “Home Run” with the Virtual Partner Summit.
In the simplest terms, public cloud is attractive because of convenience, the ability to acquire IT resources on demand and pay as you use them in a utility fashion. This is why many organizations are finding departments circumventing their own IT to get these services from public cloud providers. Although convenient, this introduces new issues like security, ownership of data and compliance to regulations. CIOs are trying to evolve their own service delivery models so that they can provide on demand services in an IT as a Service fashion to meet the new expectation of end users but this requires the ability to manage and orchestrate resources to provide the right services to meet business and economic consumption models. This is why clouds are not products you buy but rather highly customized architectures with the right kind of management.
But what if a company could create the best of both worlds, a public cloud like capacity on demand consumption model on a single tenant private environment that they can manage? What if we were able to analyze consumption rates and create workload pools made of customized configurations built on best of breed technologies and you paid only for what you used in a completely managed environment? Would that be of value? The overwhelming answer has been yes.