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Speaking at the Government Health IT Conference and Exhibition here, CGI Federal executives poked holes in some of the hype and puns surrounding cloud computing.
In 18 months the federal government went from saying “this is a good idea” to telling agencies “you must do this.” And as agencies increasingly adopt cloud computing, whethert in the form of applications, infrastructure, or platforms, they are running into what John Pientka, CGI Federal’s vice president of cloud computing calls the “3 D’s of cloud computing.”
Here are the three D's:
1. Dazzle. Even though most of the underlying technologies are not new, the fresh way of packaging, purchasing, and consuming cloud offerings tends to excite IT professionals, Pientka said.
2. Deploy. Dazzled, the inevitable next step is to build a cloud or subscribe to hosted applications.
3. Disappointment. The surprise that IT shops experience upon realizing that the cloud computing model is not the answer to all their technology troubles.
Despite the common disappointment “there is hope beyond the hype,” said John Loonsk, CMIO of CGI Federal. In addition to the well-known cost-savings, efficiency, scalability, and time-to-market advantages, “part of the hope is to allow increased functionality of the IT. We can bring services to the healthcare industry.”
Pientka added that the federal government’s cloud initiatives may both bolster cloud security, via the FedRamp program, and actually propel cloud adoption in the private sector. “The federal government is the market maker,” he added. “It’s the top consumer of IT in the world.”
Loonsk said that Cloud First policy “is going to be constructive to health IT in particular,” but that signs of Gartner’s Trough of Disillusionment phase of the hype cycle are emerging, with report of outages at prominent hosts.
“There will probably be a wave of disillusionment that follows,” Loonsk added.