Archive for the 'cloud computing' Category

OSGi, Componentization, Virtualization and Dashboards

May 1, 2009

In yesterday’s Web panel discussion, WSO2’s Paul Fremantle and Sanjiva Weerawarana did a brilliant job answering questions from audience on contemporary topics in relation to SOA, middleware and the WSO2 stack. Initial discussion covered ground on the OSGi hype, WSO2’s adoption of the OSGi technology with its release of WSO2 Carbon, and its limitations. Sanjiva stated that pragmatic Carbon installations tends to take off with the adoption of a single product, which is then extended as per additional needs – rather than an installation that begins with the Carbon core, an enhanced with components. This seems more evident when we dive into popularus use cases driving middleware componentization. They are:

  • those who do not want to run separate products in multiple server instances in order to get a job done.
  • users who were frustrated with having to make a all-or-non decision taking on propriety middleware solutions – which meant they’d have to throw away all of their existing middleware in order to accommodate a new vendor.

The value of componentization, as Sanjiva pointed out, does not stop there. In fact, componentization has enabled innovative combinations of components in customer sites, that’s fused much more value added usage of WSO2 middleware, that was not envisioned at the point these compoenents were written. This to me is one of the greatest joys of technology. To watch new technology come out of research is certainly exciting, however, it is much more exciting to see the actual usage of a technology as it reaches the end users, which at time is far more outreaching that the technology initially planned. These innovative use cases then fuels additional research in that area of technology adoption.

Enforcing this cycle more rapidly means, there is constant feedback that results in continuous improvement to the technology in question. It is the value proposition behind the concept “release early, release often“.

As Paul and Sanjiva pointed out, componentization fits in very well with cloud computing and on-demand computing arena, in which users try squeeze in more and more value out of a single instance. With multiple virtualized platforms sitting in a single instance, virtualization stands to benefit greatly from componentization that leaves out having to live with fat and bloated solutions in cloud instances that would takes up considerable administrative efforts related to management and scalability.
On the cloud front, Sanjiva also emphasized the need to go a step forward from simply using it to host applications, which on its own clearly have merits, to actually host applications that are componentized. He referred to these as appliances – application component configurations that are assembled to meet very specific usage requirement,  reducing the total foot print of the installation. Along the same path, Paul mentioned that cloud computing with componentization could actually make the running of a data center a lot more efficient. They revealed WSO2 plans to offer its entire middleware stack on Amazon and Eucalyptus cloud infrastructures, just this same way.

In the presentation frontier, Paul mentioned WSO2 efforts in building a Carbon UI. He illustrated the the need for a business health monitoring portal requirement within an SOA. Such a system would then alert the health status of component deployments while exposing services that are otherwise distributed. A JSR-168 and iGoogle compatible personalized and componentized UI server solution is already in WSO2 agenda.

Presentation at SOA Symposium: Scalable SOA in Your Own Open Source Cloud

April 17, 2009

Just before the April break, Dr. Sanjiva Weerawarana did a presentation on setting up open source SOA cloud platforms to eliminate current proprietary vendor solutions. It was presented at the SOA symposium that was held in Arlington, VA.

“Cloud computing is primarily about three things: on-demand scaling for peak load management, multi-tenant sharing, and parallel execution. On-demand scaling refers to the ability of the cloud to allow an application to consume more resources as the demand on the application increases and for this to happen without over participation from the developer. Multi-tenancy relates to how a single application can be shared and used securely (and independently) by different consumers. Finally, parallel execution enables an application to request additional hardware and to execute in the entire set of nodes as a parallel computer. The most challenging part of the puzzle is providing a single programming model for application developers.”

“Proprietary clouds such as Amazon EC2, Google AppEngine and Microsoft Azure do offer many of these capabilities. However, signing up to a proprietary cloud is like checking into the proverbial Hotel California: “You can check out but you can never leave!” During this presentation we will look at how a collection of open source components can be combined to form an open source cloud that addresses all aspects of cloud computing but that also leverages open standards to establish a model whereby applications running on open source clouds can fully interoperate with other cloud platforms as well.”

“The US DoD has embarked on a path to implementation of SOA as a primary means to deliver increased capability by improving the efficiency and effectiveness of business operations.”
The conference and workshop consisted of top SOA experts representing industry, government, and vendors. The following slides are from Sanjiva’s presentation.

Article on Cloud Computing

April 2, 2009

Landed on an excellent article that explain various cloud computing flavors..
Mentions on open source cloud initiatives such as Eucalyptus – Elastic Utility Computing Architecture for Linking Your Programs To Useful Systems and Apache Hadoop as well.

While you are at it, take a look at Azeez’s presentation that he did at ApacheCon EU last week on “Autoscaling Axis2 Web Services on Amazon EC” is now published on OT.

Last year I too authored an article on the topic.

S3 Sneezes and the Cloud Catches a Cold!

July 22, 2008

Read about the Amazon S3 outage here.

Where did the Computer Go? Computing in the Cloud.

June 29, 2008

The article is now available on Oxygen Tank here.
Yes, the first 5 words of the title I borrowed from the marketing slogan Apple used to sell its iMac G5. Like how little Evelyn says whenever she does something that she believes I would not approve of, I’d say ‘..but that’s Ok!’

An Amazing Data Center

May 27, 2008

Here’s an unbelievable personal account from a man who actually walked into what’s believed to be the world’s largest data center.. I found this in the internal News mailing list at WSO2. If Dr. Sanjiva hadn’t posted it, I’d never have believed its true.
After reading the full account it was like coming out of a movie.. a MI more likely..
And here’s your turn to sit in the theater and enjoy the full ride.

NB: “The workers at Switch – many of them multi-millionaires, including Roy’s assistant – look like they’ve bought into the program as well. I’ve never seen a happier group of t-shirt and short wearing staff”.. I couldn’t help the flashbacks of WSO2 staff members hanging around in denims and t-shirts when I first stepped into the building for my very first interview:)

All at once I saw a crowd

May 11, 2008

Sun’s Rocket-Fuelled Cloud

May 11, 2008