The Call For Reconsideration Of Cloud Strategies Has Arrived

Twelve months ago, Hewlett Packard Enterprise partnered with Dark Matter’s cloud anthropology unit to uncover the rapidly advancing culture and sub-cultures of cloud adoption.

What initially started as a research programme in the public sector, to determine if the cloud-first policy was a viable mandate for transformation, quickly grew into a broader project. It became apparent that the challenges faced are ubiquitous across all industries and geographies. This sparked our collective curiosity, and the Clouded journey began to unfold.

This journey of discovery has been captured in a documentary film, in partnership with both HPE and VMware, that premieres this autumn. The film looks to explore a prevailing culture that still points towards a public cloud-first approach, but with seemingly limited questioning of the potential risks it could pose.

Through a series of comprehensive interviews, Dark Matter gathered an extensive variety of insights and, often surprising, opinions from some of the world’s most experienced individuals in the industry. While the subject of cloud is certainly one of divided opinion, on one point almost all agree – there should be no “one size fits all.”

There are of course many factors to consider when developing cloud strategies, but Dark Matter was surprised to find that the nuances that arguably should be considered, were often missed. The hyperscale public cloud seemed, for many, to be the only destination. Regardless of an organization’s current digital estate, multigenerational IT and data security requirements, it would seem the ultimate ambition is to migrate all workloads and data to the public cloud, but why?

Behavioral specialists would cite that human behavior and cognitive bias have likely impacted cloud strategy decisions, along with the continued hype from the dominant public cloud providers. This is something that many of the film’s contributors verified, sharing how the public cloud became somewhat fashionable, the pop culture of the technology world.

It is human nature to seek recommendation, trust and direction from peers when making decisions. In economics and finance this is often referred to as rational herding, where market participants react to information about the behavior of other market agents or participants rather than the behaviour of the market, and the fundamental transactions. But just because everyone else is doing it, does it mean it’s the right thing to do?

Hyperscale public cloud could well be the right choice for many a workload or application. Its scalable agile nature has provided the ideal environment for experimenting and testing for example, but just as it provides the perfect solution for some, for others it can and has in many cases, caused a raft of negative ramifications.

And what about the future? The world has changed dramatically over the last decade, especially in the last few years. Data, for example, is growing at an exponential rate. We produce 2.5 million terabytes of data every day and much of that data is hosted in a public cloud. Will we reach a point where the public cloud will outpace digital infrastructure? Some would suggest we are already there. But what does reaching a significant critical mass of data and applications running on a very small number of platforms really mean? Does this pose a systemic risk to industries or national infrastructures that rely on it?

The way that data is being created and processed has also changed extensively, individuals and organizations are becoming more connected than ever before – there are currently estimated to be 50 billion devices across the globe. A number that is set to increase to 150 billion devices by 2025 – all of which will be creating data, some of which will be latency sensitive and require processing capability at the edge. Is this something the public cloud can cope with? Some would argue not.

It is clear that future technology strategies need to consider a broad spectrum of questions. With much of the world’s technology infrastructure reliant on “public cloud,” is it wise to let the trends and behaviors of the last decade continue unchallenged with so much more than just individual businesses’ consequences at stake? There is a growing movement of an alternative viewpoint being heard through organizations such as Gaia-X that call for reconsideration and a rebalance of data sovereignty and sharing.

We believe this is the decade of a hybrid approach and a shift to a culture of conscious cloud strategy and decision making.

Covering regulations, data sovereignty, the edge era and more, the Clouded film, aims to demystify the culture of “cloud” and poses a call for mindful consideration. As a global community of technologists, now is the time to address this – Clouded is just the beginning. Register your interest for the premiere of the film this Autumn.

This article was submitted by Hewlett Packard Enterprise.

Register your interest here to see the premiere of the film Clouded this Autumn here.


Sponsored by HPE.

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