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#RackspaceSolve Debates Cloud Adoption and Use of Analytic Tools

Cloud adoption has increased massively in the past few years, and technology trends can only benefit IT managers.

Speaking at the Rackspace Solve 2016 conference in London, Rackspace CTO John Engates, said that he is seeing large adoption, and this presents an opportunity to work with emerging technologies and analytics.

In his opening talk “Experts in a multi-client world”, Engates identified the two challenges of cloud adoption of a lack of resources and an expertise problem. “What we have now is end-users and consumers of websites and they connect to content management systems, digital platforms and mobile applications, but there is also internal challenges using CRM or email and that is what we have to deal with as IT managers,” he said.

“Also there are new challenges like Shadow IT and a lot going on there, and some challenges in heading to the cloud and you can pick up applications and move to the cloud. Some are on the journey or already there, or moving and that is where companies are starting.”

Engates acknowledged that cost is a reason to not move to the cloud, but said “it is usually hard IT, and cloud is opening up opportunities to do more and it can transform business”. Saying that the challenges “keep us current”, he argued that what is next is the need to embrace new technology and tools, and IoT was something he hears a lot about, as is artificial intelligence and machine learning.

He said: “This is something you think more about in science fiction where thinking machines are created, but in the real world it is practical to think of it like pattern recognition or numerical recognition, and that is how Google Street View recognizes your address, by looking at patterns and computers are able to recognize what a number eight looks like.”

He predicted a move to more advanced machine learning, but that is what cloud is doing in terms of machine learning and how it can be put to good use in the business.

Concluding, Engates pointed to three factors: that the number of cloud options is “dramatically greater” than a few years ago as now there is public, private, hybrid and multi-tenant cloud”; that it is “getting crazy in terms of options and complexity to bring it together”; and finally in the demand for expertise of developers and engineers which “is skyrocketing”, but these people remain hard to find as businesses cannot find them and keep them on the payroll.

Talking to Infosecurity, Brian Kelly, chief security officer at Rackspace, agreed that cloud deployment does not have the stigma that is used to, and now we have software defined networking, micro-segmentation and there is opportunity in the cloud as the operating system is closer and closer to the cloud with better control.

“With too many distributed environments, we have got to solve the endpoint business and deal with more data in real time, and behavioral analytics and data models allow users to work more efficiently,” he said.

“Here and now, we have got to be more productive and be more sophisticated with the power of analytics to understand the ground truth.”

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