The fate of cloud computing: acting as one global computer achieved without a server

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“We are well on our way to realizing our vision of making global cloud resources as easy to use as a single computer, and ultimately realizing the revolutionary potential of the cloud. You have to go down to milliseconds by clicking the capacity button to get what you need, when you need it. “

Photo: Joe McKendrick

This is from Priya Nagpurkar, director of IBM Research’s Hybrid Cloud Platform. In a recent interview with SVP and IBM Research Director Dario Gil. Nagpurkar explained how IBM Research is pioneering a serverless computing architecture that turns the cloud into the world’s largest computer. Serverless computing makes it all possible in open access without complicating back-end provisioning or security management.

There are world-class public cloud data centers in hundreds of locations on almost every continent. “But that only draws part of the picture,” says Gil. “There are a large number of private, siled computing environments around the world. The cloud has evolved dramatically over the years and is now in its current state. It’s Zettabyte’s. A large distributed network of public and private data centers made up of computing power and data. Storage. “

Despite all the advancements in what is happening in the cloud, we must “reach the point where the cloud can function as if it were a single, infinitely powerful computer”. Nag Parker said. Currently, she adds that there are too many obstacles. “Think how easy it is to work on a laptop. There are some common operating system tools that you are used to and, more importantly, you spend most of your time working on your code. In the cloud. Development must understand the nuances of all cloud providers including AWS, Azure, GCP, IBM, and private clouds. You also need to provision cloud resources that can take a long time to come online. You have to care about things. Security, compliance, resilience, scalability, profitability, etc. It’s very complicated. “

Stacks of proprietary software from various vendors “not only add to all this complexity, but also hinder innovation,” she says. “The main software abstractions start with the operating system. Linux as the operating system of the data center era has sparked this proliferation of software, including virtualization technologies such as containers. It ushered in the era of the cloud. It was. ”

She continues that serverless technology is paving the way for accessing and using this new global computer. “Serverless technology is the key to achieving this. “Serverless has three key attributes: ease of use, resiliency on demand, and pay-as-you-go,” Nagpurkar said. I go. A fairly common cloud. However, the data in this case can be recovered from anywhere, such as in the edge environment. To make it as easy as a command, you have to hide a lot on your laptop. Today, it’s developers and data scientists who do these things manually. I have to worry: can I access? Is it possible to move data? Where can I find the API key? How many containers do I need to rotate? This is what I spend most of my time. But with serverless, you can literally combine that into one command as easily as moving files around on your laptop. The serverless platform does the rest. That’s the beauty of serverlessness. “

“Today, Knative’s open source community is the driving force behind this vision. IBM supports this feature with Red Hat OpenShift Serverless. IBM Research continues to drive this evolution of serverlessness. , The cloud as a computer, ”explains Nagpurkar.

Are you realizing the vision of one world computer? “Using this highly heterogeneous distributed system is one of the biggest challenges IT faces right now,” Nagpurkar explains. Now is the time for distributed operating systems to provide “a common abstraction layer across these heterogeneous distributed cloud resources,” she says. Kubernetes is open technology that has emerged as the winner in this evolutionary battle. So, Linux containers, Kubernetes, both have open technology. “

The fate of cloud computing: acting as one global computer achieved without a server

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