Computer Society Meeting Notes – Low-Cost Cloud Computing for Fun & Profit
|July 1, 2012||Posted by Frank Gomez under CS||
April 26, 2012 – Claremont Graduate University, IEEE Los Angeles Council Chair, Karl Geiger gave an outstanding educational presentation on, Low-Cost Cloud Computing, to an engaged audience of over 50 students, IEEE members, and interested local citizens on the campus of the Claremont Colleges.
Initially, Karl began with some definitions (“Time Sharing IS BACK”) and an introduction to cloud computing services, which can be expensive for small business or personal use, if you don’t know where to look. He gave examples of the following cloud service trends: SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS; He showed us where to find open-source tools and low-cost web hosting providers which can be found for only a few dollars a month (including HostMonster.com vs. GoDaddy.com type of services). He gave numerous examples of what to look for in a “cloud” hosting provider, and demonstrated online how we all could take advantage of these services for personal and small business use. He made several good suggestions including: using stored procedures/APIs to access his remote data base; the need to buy Domain Privacy services when you sign up for a website name; and how to set up your email addressing on your hosted website.
Frank Freyne, our local section President, commented:
“Two thoughts that I took away from your presentation were: First, it is feasible to build a semi-static (in terms of low overall demand, small data base size, no significant number crunching requirements, and non-real-time response requirements) using small host servers. HostMonster is the host site under examination. There are many essentially free software packages, such as WordPress etc, that can be effectively used to build your website.
The second thought is a bit more sinister: your data may be compromised by possible intellectual property motivated raids (and I’m not talking about RAIDs here) at your hosted “cloud” site. This is especially true is your data is secured at unknown locations in the nebulous “cloud, such as non-Continental USA sites. You suggested a phone call to the host to inquire where the data is stored, and finding out what policy, if any, protects you if your spot in the “cloud” evaporates into mythical thin air. I would think that a written legal document (contract and tort law) would be a better approach before signing up with an inexpensive “cloud” storage provider if your enterprise is generating potential intellectual property. Another partial solution, which you mentioned, is to make a backup on your in-house secured RAID / server at frequent intervals.”
He also discussed BIG DATA issues (which was also the subject of the June IEEE Consultant Network’s meeting at CSUF) and Amazon Cloud Services.
At the end of the presentation, Karl took numerous questions from the audience and responded to some very specific small business cloud questions including the following: Facebook and AOL issues; Wall Street Journal cloud comments; APIs; suggested Shopping List for Cloud prospects; Apache Servers; SQL/PHP; Pop/IMAP; security on the cloud; etc.
The Foothill Section sincerely thanks Karl for his presentation and hope he will come back for another presentation in the future.