Lessons in Cloud Integration: The More Things Change…

on Jul 10th, 2013 in IBM, | Comments Off on Lessons in Cloud Integration: The More Things Change…

…the more they stay the same. That’s what it feels like to me these days, watching the evolution of enterprise computing.

I had the chance to describe today’s hybrid headaches and cloud complexities caused by the computing evolution in a recent webinar called “Breakthrough Thinking in Cloud Integration”.  In our on-demand webinar, my colleague Bryan Flanagan  describes the speed and simplicity of the IBM Cast Iron Cloud Integration solution – the time-savings (in days and weeks) realized by clients across industries are significant.

But allow me to step back and explain a bit further.

A decade ago, ERP software was considered revolutionary. There were these packages out there that promised to break down walls and link disparate systems so that everyone in the organization had access to the same information. So no matter where you sat — in HR, in procurement, in sales — you could see the same data as your colleagues. This promised great things: simpler workflows, less data entry (and fewer associated data entry errors), greater productivity and increased organizational efficiency. Best of all, it actually worked.

Then something else revolutionary came along: cloud computing. It promised great things too, like anywhere/everywhere computing capabilities, a pay-as-you-go model and more strategic use of in-house IT resources. Because of these benefits, companies started flocking to the cloud.

The problem? This move to the cloud, if not handled properly, has negated the strides made with ERP software. That’s because most companies now have their feet in two different worlds, with IT assets spread across on-premise and cloud infrastructures. They’ve created hybrid IT environments where information no longer flows from one system to the next. Instead, that information stays in silos — just like we saw before the advent of ERP.

That’s where a cloud integration solution comes in. It’s designed to knit together these disparate systems companies have inadvertently created by moving to the cloud. And the right solution can help you get it done quickly and cost-effectively.

Want to learn more about how the IBM Cast Iron Cloud Integration solution can help you move back to an integrated system?  Check out our 7-minute  on-demand webinar called “Breakthrough Thinking in Cloud Integration” and let me know your thoughts or questions in the comments below.

Big Data Storage: Closing the Performance Gap

on Jun 18th, 2013 in Big Data, IBM, Servers, Storage, and Software, | Comments Off on Big Data Storage: Closing the Performance Gap

More and more, IT organizations are enjoying the benefits of superfast processors and massive bandwidths to process the volume, variety, and velocity of big data.  But wait times still choke the flow of all that big data – hampering the promise of rapid data-driven decision making for the lines of business who are crying for it.  The big (data) question is… where’s the bottleneck?

The answer is in the storage system where the data is being stored and retrieved.  Based on traditional hard disk drive (HDD) technology, storage systems haven’t kept pace with the advances in processor speed and bandwidth.  For all of our technological advances, the mechanical arm of a hard disk drive can only move so fast across a magnetic platter. Even at peak performance, HDDs cannot deal with simultaneous high-demand read and write requests associated with big data and analytics. The technology cannot deliver, not at least where big data is concerned.  That performance gap has caused a big data bottleneck – until now.

That’s where flash storage comes in. A purely electronic storage medium, flash performs at much higher speeds that are designed to solve the input/output wait time by offering 50 times faster access times and 1,333 times more transactions per second than a HDD. Storage bottlenecks are eliminated based on microsecond latency which allows important applications to work faster.

Our clients have started to reap the performance benefits of flash storage with IBM’s FlashSystem storage solutions.  I had the chance to chat about it recently – check out my vlog:

Or, watch our 15-minute on-demand webinar, Unleashing Big Data with IBM FlashSystem.

Share your thoughts – how is your organization managing the big data performance gap?

Big IMPACT in Cloud Integration

on May 23rd, 2013 in IBM, | Comments Off on Big IMPACT in Cloud Integration

We came home from Las Vegas last month with a little something extra…and I wanted to share the good news.  IBM awarded Ciber the “Cloud Innovation Award” as a finalist during the IBM IMPACT 2013 WebSphere software conference in late April.  We were recognized for closing and implementing more than 20 projects for Cast Iron Cloud Integration in 2012 – wow.  I’m proud of the outstanding Ciber team who made it all possible:

  • Bryan Flanagan, Business Development Manager
  • Parke Cummins, Senior Consultant
  • Holly Holloway, Software Sales Support

Cloud integration is gaining awareness as businesses search for a quick and cost-effective method to tie together their on-premise ERP systems with their cloud applications (such as SalesForce.com)   – and so is our Cloud Integration solution, powered by IBM Cast Iron.  The momentum has continued – and we’re geared up for a great year ahead.  Congratulations, team!


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