Cloud Computing Fundamentals

Apr 28

The topic for my research paper in Management Information Systems was cloud computing. Naturally I have a deep understanding of many cloud computing technologies, but it was good to review the nomenclature used in academic research. I gained some sophistication in segmenting the cloud computing space and differentiating it from grid computing and other infrastructure models. However, on the whole, cloud computing isn’t that different from traditional computing (I have to call it something). When comparing it to the advent of other technologies which are now common place, it has followed a similar trajectory. I can see a future where compute resources take on a boutique style differentiation model where consumption of cloud technology appeals to consumer preference as much as consumer need. Here’s a presentation I put together that summarizes my...

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Cloud Computing

Apr 19

The term cloud computing has been a buzz term for a few years. One complaint about cloud computing is that everyone seems to mean something different. Much of the academic research compartmentalizes cloud computing into three categories, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS). The first two, IaaS and PaaS are of interest to software developers. SaaS is of more interest to end consumers. Infrastructure is the most flexible and requires a developer to make decisions about how an application will scale and recover from failures. Often Platform offerings manage details like scaling and reliability but provide less flexibility to the end developer. SaaS provides the consumer with a managed offering that is often available from anywhere and includes backups and security. From a management perspective, there are some alluring characteristics to embracing cloud computing. These must be weighed against security and privacy, especially for companies whose operations fall within the view of government regulators. You can read my review of the current research below. Download Cloud...

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Personal Leadership Assessment

Feb 26

In leadership, it’s often as important to know one’s self as it is to know one’s followers. With this in mind, my leadership course required me to prepare a presentation exploring my own leadership style. In this personal leadership assessment I explore the role of several influences in my life, including books, virtues and family. When it came to mapping out the sequence for the presentation, I found it difficult to know where to start and where to end. To me, leadership is more of a process, for both the leader and the follower, than it is a state. Sequence is frequently upset. For this reason I also chose pencil for the sketches to indicate that I’m a work in progress, always striving to...

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Glo-Bus Competition Results

Feb 24

My marketing course made use of an online simulation which allowed students to form groups and operate a digital camera business. The inputs that were available to students included product parameters, marketing parameters, financial parameters and so on. My co-manager and I decided we would adopt a high quality, high margin strategy and go for low market share but focus on the high end customers. Unfortunately the algorithm didn’t accommodate this approach. It should have been obvious by year 8 in the simulation, but we persisted to see if there would be a cumulative effect that would reward the high quality approach. After year eight we could see that the simulation algorithm would not work with our strategy. We also noticed that the groups in the lead were focused almost exclusively on increasing market share. Despite low margins, they were making good profits based on large volume of sales. We changed our strategy in year nine. In the following three years we focused much more on market share by reducing our margins, especially in the entry level camera market. In year 11 we returned some focus to our camera quality, which slowed our growth somewhat. By this time our competitor’s growth had stagnated. Trending for the last three years showed that we would surpass the leader within another four years. Here’s a presentation that walks through our strategy and some key metrics from the...

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Fiji Water and Environmental Responsibility

Feb 23

Corporate Social Responsibility and ethical questions of stakeholder vs. stockholder analysis affect many businesses. For businesses that trade in limited natural resources, these issues have increased significance. In the analysis below, I explore how Fiji Water both profited from and suffered under environmental influences. There are many stakeholders who have interest in Fiji Water and its operations, both internal and external to Fiji. These include local residents, vendors external to Fiji and government. Each of these facets represents a cost benefit analysis for those who intend to put up the capital to fund the venture. It also represents potentially complicated issues from various points of view, including local residents, government officials, environmentalists and even regional and global participants. Download Fiji Water case...

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Netflix and the Future of Entertainment – case study

Feb 10

The latest case study for my marketing class was a review of Netflix. It discusses trends in delivery of entertainment content, starting with video cassette through to their streaming service. I highlight some of the strategic business choices that Netflix is making to remain relevant among competitors. Download Netflix Case...

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