Cloud is at critical point; adoption challenge is cultural

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“The cloud is at that critical point. We’re in for a major disruption,” Michael Liebow of Accenture Cloud said last December 11 at the NY Enterprise Tech meetup that included Randall Hunt of Amazon Lambda and Jonathan Fullam of Pivotal Cloud Foundry.

Liebow was talking about how many corporations can approach the cloud from the technical, commercial and cultural standpoint. Now, if only most of them can step out of their comfort zones and embrace it. If not, a disruption enabler is clearly needed–to bring some governance and make it easy to deploy services.

Liebow came with CTO Paul Daugherty, also of Accenture, to announce and demonstrate version 3 of Accenture Cloud at NYET’s meetup at Cooley LLP.

The Accenture Cloud Platform (ACP) is a self-service cloud management portal, hosted and managed by Accenture and offered “as a Service.” ACP manages the virtual infrastructure of its public and private clouds. “We sell it as a service, (but) it’s a product within Accenture,” Liebow said.

Cloud-based, scalable, pay-as-you-go consumption of IT infrastructure services is now essential to delivering the business capabilities required by a digital business.

ACP allows digital businesses to get fast access to pre-vetted, quality cloud services through an extensible service catalog for IT governance and self-service provisioning of cloud computing services.

“It’s fully customizable. Through encryption and our solutions, you can create a secure design,” Liebow said.
ACP supports leading providers such as Amazon, Microsoft, Cisco, NTT Communications and others.

The next presenter was Amazon Lambda, a compute service that runs your code in response to events and automatically manages the compute resources for you, making it easy to build applications that respond quickly to new information.

AWS Lambda starts running your code within milliseconds of an event such as an image upload, in-app activity, website click, or output from a connected device. You can also use AWS Lambda to create new back-end services where compute resources are automatically triggered based on custom requests. With AWS Lambda you pay only for the requests served and the compute time required to run your code.

With AWS Lambda you pay only for the requests served and the compute time required to run your code. Billing is reportedly metered in increments of 100 milliseconds, making it cost-effective and easy to scale automatically from a few requests per day to thousands per second.

Hunt called Amazon Lambda “a zero-administration computer platform, because your infrastructure should not interfere with your life.”

Last presenter was Fullam of Pivotal Cloud, a new platform that converges both application developer and IT operator processes so that enterprises can quickly iterate on software while achieving built-in operator efficiencies.

Pivotal demonstrated how Cloud Foundry PaaS enables a developer to deploy an application in seconds and remove the complexities around application health management, updates, and scaling

Darabi talks about Zady, her ethical fashion brand/e-commerce site

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When Soraya Darabi speaks, you wonder if she can play poker. She has a soft, gentle voice and unassuming demeanor. The co-founder of Zady, the “ethically fashioned brand,” was at the Startup Grind last December 3 talking to host Peter Crysdale at the Pivotal Labs in midtown Manhattan.

Even over a year in her startup with co-founder Maxine Bedat, Darabi still feels like she’s just starting. “It feels bipolar. It doesn’t go away. I (may) wake up at 2 a.m. and can’t get back to sleep till it’s 4 a.m.” Is she bluffing us?

Having worked in a big organization like the NY Times and a small startup, drop.io, afterwards, Darabi likes to say that there are “no passive aggressive newsroom journalists,” but at the startup later where she was only one of two women, she smiles talking about how its culture likes to wear “hoodies.” She smiles briefly when telling this part of her life.

Nowadays, she focuses on being both a tech-savvy and eco-conscious fashion brand. “We want people to look at a product and know how it came to be.” She likes the process that goes into crafting fashion wear, equating it with luxury products and their craftsmanship.

Darabi also likes her clothes to be all made in the U.S., with 5 percent of proceeds going to charity. She admits that she cannot compete in terms of pricing. At the interview, she was wearing her wool sweater priced at $160. It’s reportedly made from all-natural materials, including wool from Shaniko, Oregon, a farm that uses a conservative management plan to make sure it has a positive impact on the environment.

Beyond price considerations, she likes how her clothes have important stories to tell in contrast to other garments. “Landfills are filling up with T-shirts.”

If you think you need to be very persuasive to be an entrepreneur, Darabi doesn’t show that. If you think you need to stick to your industry, like her being a digital marketer, think again. Neither Darabi or Bedat have fashion backgrounds—and yet, that’s where they are now.

Come to think of it, though. Both founders are looking at this business beyond fashion; they aim to help consumers better understand the origin of their slow-fashion product line, especially with their own line.

appLOUD and youWare connect online and physical worlds

How much of the online world do you want to merge with your physical world? Two startups at the NY Tech Meetup last December 2 aim to remove this friction.

appLOUD, a live stream of fan-generated live music videos, allows you to give a tip to starving musicians out there, according to founder Cecilia Pagkalinawan. You simply watch 30 seconds of live music videos from street performances to concert halls and it will make sure the tips reach these artists. For artists already in the stream, the “tips” can be categorized in various ways–for rent, school tuition, even charity donation.

The other startup demonstration, Thinkyou, could be a business card killer. Its YouWare is instant social networking if you have one of its wearables. For instance, you can connect on Linkedin with someone you just met by the flick of a QR-coded wristband.). And we all thought QR codes were dead.

How does it work? When someone scans youWare with the youPass app, you become instantly linked based on the social network accounts you want to use for connecting with someone.

How is it doing? It’s fairly new. Founder Mike Juliano is currently running a Kickstarter campaign where he is currently raising $50,000 for it.

Not exactly a newbie since it was founded in 2009, but wireWAX left the crowd in awe as it demonstrated its taggable video tool. It allows you to add tracking tags to people and objects on video. To showcase its technology, a demonstration showed how it could track every person coming into the theater. Yes, we saw this in Minority Report the movie and even another company that presented in this same theater months ago.

Personal investing has gone social as well with Openfolio. It’s up to you, though, if you want to share your investments with Warren Buffett, though. The app allows you to stay private and choose the portfolios you want to see.

Another presenter, Celery, is not for vegetarians only. It’s a buy-and-sell bitcoin site. Reportedly secure, it allows you to buy bitcoins using your bank account. They can put your purchased bitcoins in storage.

Other startups showed how their startups or products can make our lives easier or productive: Kinvolved can check your kids’ school attendance; Bespoke marries discovery and utility visually, and showed.me offers enterprise peer-to-peer learning among employees.