Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, ManageEngine IT Matters, Jyoti Bansal, Carmen Gonzalez

Related Topics: Agile Computing, Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo

Agile Computing: Article

Can Google Chrome Bring Cloud Computing to the Masses?

Google is looking to make a profit from this ploy by getting people to use the "cloud" for lots of other applications

Stephen DeAngelis's "Enterprise Resilience" Blog

Google is following a common pattern used in the IT industry - get something out there and then tweak it as necessary. I'm not sure how all of this will play out. I do know that when the elephants start fighting a lot of dust will be raised. Only when that dust settles will we have a better idea about the future of cloud computing and the Internet.

As New York Times technology columnist Steve Lohr reports, "Hardly a day goes by, it seems, without some announcement of a new “cloud computing” offering or initiative." ["Commercializing the Cloud," 1 August 2008] Lohr's column was about two new IBM data centers that are going to be built in Tokyo and North Carolina.

"The I.B.M. statement says its North Carolina operation will afford its lucky customers 'unparalleled access to massive Internet-scale computing capabilities while gaining the cost and environmental protection advantages of I.B.M.'s industry-leading energy efficiency data center design.' Yes, yes, a veritable technological second coming. The skeptics might point out that I.B.M. has been promoting a back-to-the-future vision of computing delivered as a service from large data centers for more than six years. Back then, it was called computing-on-demand — a sort of digital equivalent of an electric utility. Still, what we’re seeing today is an evolutionary step beyond the earlier vision. The cloud centers, analysts note, rely on a technological bedrock of industry-standard server computers and open-source software like Linux, linked together in huge computing clusters. Many of the techniques were initially developed in the nation's federal supercomputing labs. The technology was applied at scale by the pioneering Internet companies (think Amazon, Yahoo and Google), and now I.B.M. and its commercial brethren are beginning to offer cloud computing."

Lohr also noted that Yahoo, Hewlett-Packard and Intel had announced a joint cloud research program. All this is great for big commercial and government clients, but Google now wants to bring the power of cloud computing to individual home users via a new browser ["Google's Chrome Ups Ante," by Heather Green, BusinessWeek, 3 September 2008]. Green writes:

"Browser wars? On steroids. When Google announced on Sept. 1 that it was releasing its own Web browser, Chrome, the immediate buzz was that the bruising battles over browser domination, played out between Netscape and Microsoft in the late 1990s, were back on. Google, though, has much bigger ambitions. The goal, say Google execs, is not merely to win share of an existing market, but to change the very nature of Internet browsing—and the way we use computers. If Chrome works as planned, it will lead much of computing from the desktop—Microsoft's domain—toward remote data centers. These, in Google's lingo, are known as the 'cloud.' Google runs the biggest and most efficient data centers on earth, and moving much of the world's computing from desktops into its clouds is the heart of the company's strategy."

Of course, this isn't just about browsing using the power of cloud computing. Google is looking to make a profit from this ploy by getting people to use the "cloud" for lots of other applications as well.

"'Google really believes the future of the Web is running applications on the Web,' says Danny Sullivan, who runs Calafia Consulting, a Web consulting firm. 'They want to be leading the charge.'"

As Steve Lohr noted above, IBM shares the same vision of the future. But IBM and Google aren't the only big corporations interested in capturing a share of the future. When it comes to browser wars, Green writes:

"As this battle commences, Microsoft enjoys a towering head start. Its Internet Explorer dominates the browser market, with 75% share. And Microsoft is launching its latest upgrade, IE8, which is loaded with new features. Google's Chrome, by contrast, appears bare-bones. Its power, say Google engineers, will come from its ability to run applications faster and more securely, especially those hosted outside the PC, on the cloud. Unlike Google's top-secret search algorithms or the proprietary software it uses to carry out its searches, Chrome was born as an open-source system."

"Bare-bones" doesn't exactly make Chrome appear to be a likely contender to dethrone Internet Explorer. Green, however, reminds her readers of how the browser war began.

"To understand what's new [about Chrome], think of Netscape, the browsing sensation 14 years ago at the dawn of the World Wide Web. The goal back then was simply to open and read Web pages. This is still important, of course, whether Web surfers are reading a story in The New York Times or checking out a friend's home page on MySpace. Most browsers today, including Mozilla Firefox and Apple's Safari, have grown to provide that Web browsing service. Google, though, wants people to use browsers to do much more, particularly to run software applications, like word processing, spreadsheets, video editing, and conferencing. In Google's scheme, the browser is a gateway into the clouds, one that will eventually be tapped from anywhere—a PC, a mobile phone, perhaps even a television. And many of the applications available in the clouds, from calendars to e-mail, will likely compete directly with Microsoft's dominant suite of Office applications, including Excel and Outlook. Says Google co-founder Sergey Brin: 'What we have is a lightweight engine for running Web applications that doesn't have the baggage of an operating system.'

As you can imagine, Google touches a sensitive nerve for Microsoft when it discusses "the baggage of an operating system." Microsoft is taking notice Green reports.

"Microsoft insists that even with the growth of cloud computing, users will still demand powerful applications and processing power in their own machines. At the same time, Microsoft has equipped its newest browser with features to throttle Google's exploding search market share. IE8 lets users block information that helps Google place more relevant ads, and it offers an improved Microsoft-oriented search toolbar. Still, the lofty promises surrounding Chrome do raise concerns at Microsoft's headquarters in Redmond, Wash. Dean Hachamovich, general manager of Internet Explorer, wonders if Google is embarking on a browser that will separate it, and its users, from the rest of Web traffic. 'As they add things, what happens to everybody else?' he asks. 'Is the Web going to become bifurcated? Trifurcated?'"

Raising fears is always a good tactic for those invested heavily in the status quo. Google executives dismiss such concerns.

"Google executives don't foresee such a schism, but instead predict that others may well borrow the most enticing features from the open-source program. The keys for Chrome, they say, are not a host of jazzy applications, but instead a system that provides speed, security, and easy-to-understand software applications. First-day reviews are mixed, with some reports of glitches and slow downloads. But if, with a few tweaks, Google can coax businesses and consumers to move more of their computing from the desktop onto the Web, the payoff in Google's core business—advertising—could be tremendous. A migration onto its clouds would provide Google with more places to collect data and to serve search ads."

Green reports that Google is launching its new browser in a big way.

"The company is launching Chrome, which it has been working on for two years, in 43 languages and 122 countries. (For now, it's available only for Windows machines—not Macs or Linux.) Most of the magic is hidden inside the system. Google engineers developed a multiprocessor architecture, which means that the browser can run separate applications in different tabs at the same time. So if one application crashes, the rest continue to perform. Though rumors have swirled for years that Google was pursuing its own operating system or a browser, the venture still surprised many. That's because Google has had a close partnership with Mozilla, which manages the Firefox browser. Google's search pops up as Firefox's home page and is the main search engine."

Analysts' surprise over Google's new browser is understandable. Google seemed to have a solid partnership with Mozilla and Firefox has made serious inroads in the browser market. Green continues:

"During the past four years, Firefox has taken off, growing from zero market share to 20%, eating away at the dominance of Microsoft's Internet Explorer. As Firefox has taken off, so has Google's reach on the browser. So the fact that it went out on its own, rather than working with Firefox to overhaul the browser, underlines how important cloud computing is to Google's future."

Chrome's release hasn't been without problems, Green reports. But Google is following a common pattern used in the IT industry -- get something out there and then tweak it as necessary.

"Early reviews point to drawbacks of the browser, including the lack of a way to manage bookmarks. Google admits that it's following its familiar pattern of 'launch early and iterate.' John Lilly, the chief executive of Mozilla, who has seen his share of upsets, says it's hard to gauge how popular Chrome can become. 'The consumer Internet is a wild and wacky thing, I think that a lot of people will start experimenting right away with Chrome. But this is a story that will play out over weeks, months, and years, not hours and days.'"

I'm not sure how all of this will play out. I do know that when the elephants start fighting a lot of dust will be raised. Only when that dust settles will we have a better idea about the future of computing and the Internet.

 

More Stories By Stephen F. DeAngelis

Stephen F. DeAngelis is founder, president and chief executive officer of Enterra Solutions, LLC - the leader in Advanced Enterprise Management Systems, helping public and private sector clients transform into resilient enterprises that proactively mitigate strategic and operational risk and optimize enterprise performance. DeAngelis
was recognized as an Esquire’s 2006 Best and Brightest honoree in innovation. In addition to his corporate responsibilities, he is a visiting scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, a visiting scientist at Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute (SEI), a senior fellow and adjunct professor at the United States Merchant Marine Academy in King’s Point, New York. In June 2008, DeAngelis joined the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Iraq
Initiative as its co-chair and also serves as co-chair of its Kurdistan Region of Iraq Investment Taskforce.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enzu will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enzu’s mission is to be the leading provider of enterprise cloud solutions worldwide. Enzu enables online businesses to use its IT infrastructure to their competitive ad...
Existing Big Data solutions are mainly focused on the discovery and analysis of data. The solutions are scalable and highly available but tedious when swapping in and swapping out occurs in disarray and thrashing takes place. The resolution for thrashing through machine learning algorithms and support nomenclature is through simple techniques. Organizations that have been collecting large customer data are increasingly seeing the need to use the data for swapping in and out and thrashing occurs ...
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.
SYS-CON Events announced today that delaPlex will exhibit at SYS-CON's @CloudExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. delaPlex pioneered Software Development as a Service (SDaaS), which provides scalable resources to build, test, and deploy software. It’s a fast and more reliable way to develop a new product or expand your in-house team.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Interoute is the owner operator of Europe's largest network and a global cloud services platform, which encompasses over 70,000 km of lit fiber, 15 data centers, 17 virtual data centers and 33 colocation centers, with connections to 195 additional partner data centers. Our full-service Unifie...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Progress, a global leader in application development, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Enterprises today are rapidly adopting the cloud, while continuing to retain business-critical/sensitive data inside the firewall. This is creating two separate data silos – one inside the firewall and the other outside the firewall. Cloud ISVs oft...
SYS-CON Events announced today that WineSOFT will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Based in Seoul and Irvine, WineSOFT is an innovative software house focusing on internet infrastructure solutions. The venture started as a bootstrap start-up in 2010 by focusing on making the internet faster and more powerful. WineSOFT’s knowledge is based on the expertise of TCP/IP, VPN, SSL, peer-to-peer, mob...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Carbonite will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Carbonite protects your entire IT footprint with the right level of protection for each workload, ensuring lower costs and dependable solutions with DoubleTake and Evault.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ocean9will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Ocean9 provides cloud services for Backup, Disaster Recovery (DRaaS) and instant Innovation, and redefines enterprise infrastructure with its cloud native subscription offerings for mission critical SAP workloads.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Progress, a global leader in application development, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Enterprises today are rapidly adopting the cloud, while continuing to retain business-critical/sensitive data inside the firewall. This is creating two separate data silos – one inside the firewall and the other outside the firewall. Cloud ISVs ofte...
As cloud adoption continues to transform business, today's global enterprises are challenged with managing a growing amount of information living outside of the data center. The rapid adoption of IoT and increasingly mobile workforce are exacerbating the problem. Ensuring secure data sharing and efficient backup poses capacity and bandwidth considerations as well as policy and regulatory compliance issues.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Academy will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloud Academy is the industry’s most innovative, vendor-neutral cloud technology training platform. Cloud Academy provides continuous learning solutions for individuals and enterprise teams for Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and the most popular cloud computing technologies. Ge...
DevOps at Cloud Expo – being held October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real r...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Linux Academy, the foremost online Linux and cloud training platform and community, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Linux Academy was founded on the belief that providing high-quality, in-depth training should be available at an affordable price. Industry leaders in quality training, provided services, and student certification passes, its goal is to c...
The 21st International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding busin...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Hitachi Data Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi LTD., will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City. Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) will be featuring the Hitachi Content Platform (HCP) portfolio. This is the industry’s only offering that allows organizations to bring together object storage, file sync and share, cloud storage gateways, and sophisticated search and...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CollabNet, a global leader in enterprise software development, release automation and DevOps solutions, will be a Bronze Sponsor of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, taking place from June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CollabNet offers a broad range of solutions with the mission of helping modern organizations deliver quality software at speed. The company’s latest innovation, the DevOps Lifecycle Manager (DLM), supports Value S...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outscale will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Outscale's technology makes an automated and adaptable Cloud available to businesses, supporting them in the most complex IT projects while controlling their operational aspects. You boost your IT infrastructure's reactivity, with request responses that only take a few seconds.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Peak 10, Inc., a national IT infrastructure and cloud services provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Peak 10 provides reliable, tailored data center and network services, cloud and managed services. Its solutions are designed to scale and adapt to customers’ changing business needs, enabling them to lower costs, improve performance and focus intern...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 21st International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.