The risks of transitioning to the cloud–its about the data….

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I had a great hallway conversation at work about the concept of the Data of the Internet of Things (DiOT). The person pointed out that the data produced is going to continue to grow and frankly at a much faster rate than I personally would have projected.

  • Its about sensors.
  • Its about bandwidth.

Today there are millions of sensors walking about connected to a network 100% of the time (or draining your battery trying to connect). From cellular to Wi-Fi the personal productivity devices are creating and consuming data rapidly. I have a friend who has 11 different email accounts synced with his iPhone. He runs two different business’s from his phone and the emails handle different aspects of each.

There are many more data points than email. In fact from home video sources, home weather and home connections you have tons of data producing sensors. Add to that the number of people in the house and the number of cellular phones and you begin to see the flaw.

In the end it is a cautionary tale for organizations considering cloud transformation today. Will the bandwidth expand quickly enough that you can move your organization to the DiOT. Its not a thing because I wrote it in a blog. The data created by the Internet of things is going to consume bandwidth. The security required for some of the sensor data is going to consume bandwidth and processing (to operate the security).

The thing is, bandwidth is limited. In fact without a switch to Ipv6, for the most part devices won’t be able to connect. The number of Ipv4 connections remaining is tight. In fact the number of remaining Ipv4 addresses – is FINITE.

So we have a problem. Transformations are starting. People are considering moving organizations to the cloud. Organizations are building and sharing sensors and more and more data with anyone interested. Every day the number of free wi-fi hot spots increases. The amount and number of cellular phones increases. The number of remote sensor systems you can buy increases.

Plus the number of companies running cloud applications continues. More and more people are “cutting the cord” and moving away from cable and telephone providers. By the way, today one of the ways we manage bandwidth is that cable providers keep a chunk of bandwidth separate from the cellular and wi-fi worlds. Telephone (land line) and Satellite providers do the same thing. When that bandwidth also shifts completely its going to reduce performance for everyone.

I have a really good friend who always tells me its not about the data its about what you do with the data that is the real game changer. In effect creating a tiered data system may be the transitional component for an organization considering leaping to the cloud.

Data tier”ing” is simply accepting that information has various levels of criticality. IE some information isn’t real time. Some information isn’t near real-time and finally there is information that is nice to be able to access but it isn’t driving anything.

We’ve had this capability in networks for years called quality of service. If we can tier data into the quality of service solutions that exist we can begin to alleviate some of the transitional risk of bandwidth. Not all the risk mind you, but some of it.

In the end as organizations being their transitions we have to consider three simple things (that will be expanded upon in a later blog)

  • Where is my data today
  • How much data do I need to share
  • What are the tiers of the data I want to share

Every organizational transition plan should include a consideration not of where the data is today but where the data will be in 5 years and even 10 years. Preparing for the Internet burp now will reduce the end game pain of your transition.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow