Archive for November, 2013

It’s an Amazon Web Services World After All

truman-showA 2 minute read.

“It’s an AWS world, and we’re just living in it.”

Reflecting upon the first full day of AWS re:Invent 2013 my mind is spinning with conflicting thoughts. I’m trying to grasp the significance of what AWS is today and more importantly what it will be in the coming years. And also trying to anticipate where to focus innovation for the areas AWS will not venture into.

My DNA is systems management and creating solutions to fix IT pain points. But in AWS the opportunity to “solve the cloud’s” management problems is getting smaller with every new AWS release. I cheer the pace of innovation, until it commoditizes my offering.

My colleague Jenn McAuliffe used this analogy to describe her feelings about AWS. She said “We’re all in the Truman Show.” A completely enclosed world where all our needs are met in nearly nirvana-ish fashion. And the controlling forces outside this perfect world are studying the inhabitants behavior. This may sound far fetched… but the sentiment registered with me. AWS is so far ahead of every other cloud infrastructure, at some point startups and enterprises will need to decide whether they double-down on AWS and lock-in, or choose another path of least common denominator subsistence on an IaaS-only cloud.

So back to “where to innovate” in an AWS world? Focus on the application layer and serving audiences where you have a command of their domain expertise. Maybe you want to scratch your own itch, just as long as it’s not core cloud building block deficiencies. AWS will chip away at those, filing down the rough edges, more quickly than we witnessed in the Microsoft dominance era, or the Novell era before that.

It’s not your father’s enterprise IT anymore.