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Cloud Computing and Disaster Readiness

The beauty of cloud computing is it enhances "disaster readiness"

Few things in this world are guaranteed, but when it comes to the health of a small business, guaranteeing you're backed up in the event of a disaster is of the utmost importance.

There are so many ways that cloud computing can streamline a business, yet one real advantage often goes overlooked until it's too late, according to an article on

It would be difficult to think of many organizations that could stay afloat for long periods of time where crucial information and technology was unattainable, especially for small businesses.

Following the increasing impact of natural and man-made disasters on the growing data cache required for managing a modern business effectively, it makes sense to think about combating this.

The beauty of cloud computing is it enhances "disaster readiness." It does this in a number of ways, such as accessing files in the event of a disaster of any kind is usually a lot more speedy than if you needed to get hold of these another way. In some cases you simply would not have stored these anywhere but the potential disaster zone in physically accessible formats. Cloud computing solves this problem by allowing you to get at backed up information quickly and easily.

Myths and Cloud Computing
Cloud is reaching the point where its detractors are running out of ways to doubt its capabilities. Yet certain myths still remain.

According to an article on, seeing past these myths is critical to making the right decisions about whether, when and how to adopt cloud-based solutions. Based on a keynote presentation given by Oracle's Bob Evans at Cloud Expo New York, here are some cloud computing myths worth dispelling:

Myth #1: Public cloud is the only true cloud. While public clouds continue to garner more notoriety than private clouds - particularly among the media and capital markets - the truth of the matter is that the volume of private cloud adoptions still exceeds that of public cloud adoption. In a 2012 Gartner Data Center Conference poll, almost 9 out of 10 survey respondents said they were planning, piloting, or already using a private cloud within their organizations. In addition, a growing number of businesses are deploying hybrid clouds that integrate data and business processes across both public and private clouds.

Myth #2: You're either in the cloud or not. Since businesses today need to be able to respond rapidly and comprehensively to new trends and marketplace realities, it only makes sense that businesses are pursuing a wide range of cloud-based solutions to meet their specific needs. In addition, for many businesses, moving into the cloud and converting more systems and processes to the cloud requires an evolving and multi-step approach that adapts to constantly changing business needs and priorities. In many cases, the first step is to move from siloed environments to consolidated or virtualized environments. In other cases, companies move to private clouds by introducing self-service and auto-scaled environments, or metering and chargeback.

Myth #3: Clouds are one-size-fits-all. As some companies have learned to their great disappointment, there's no such thing as a cookie-cutter solution when it comes to cloud - regardless of how frequently and loudly some cloud providers try to say otherwise. Today, organizations have a huge range of cloud options.

What GE's Cloud Computing Foray Means for Big Data
One of the world's largest companies just entered the realm of cloud computing.

As if GE doesn't already have enough on its plate, the company entered the cloud computing market, announcing plans to provide cloud-based analytics services for its industrial customers.

According to an article on, the move reinforces several major themes across the industry, including a growing trend by both providers and users to capture and actually get some value from the massive amount of data generated by their companies, machines and other sources. It also shows how providers are increasingly offering services tailored specifically for certain vertical markets, in this case industry and manufacturing. And finally, in announcing the product in conjunction with partners Amazon Web Services and new analytics firm Pivotal, GE is showing how it can use technologies from others and package them as a service.

Welcome to the world of cloud computing.

GE has two major products, one being its Predictivity line, which will provide real-time data analytics across a company's network, while Proficy Historian HD is a separate service based on open source Apache Hadoop to provide historical analysis. GE is aiming the services at the customers to which it already supplies heavy machinery and manufacturing goods and services. These software packages can help businesses make decisions about what sorts of products should be made and how, for example.

"It is only in the ability to quickly analyze, understand, and put machine-based data to work in real-time that points us to a society that benefits from the promise of Big Data," GE Vice President of global software Bill Ruh said. "This is what the Industrial Internet is about."

More Stories By Patrick Burke

Patrick Burke is a writer and editor based in the greater New York area and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting.

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