Fireside Chat with Lew Moorman

The morning of day 2 at the Enterprise Cloud Summit wrapped up with a fireside chat with Lew Moorman, CSO of Rackspace (Mosso). Here are some of the more interesting quotes:

“We believe in the cloud. Sometimes people need to do certain things outside of the cloud (e.g. direct access to the physical drive for optimization). But you should go up as high in the stack as you can.”

“Sometimes you need your own house which you can decorate exactly how you like it”

“You have to decide if you’re going to build or use service providers. Running power & cooling are not core to any company.”

“We’re getting a lot of interest because the opportunity to save money is extreme. In a bad economy this accelerates even faster.”

“Amazon and Google but they have very different businesses. They have nothing in common. Part of the reason there is so much hype is because this is a paradigm shift in computing. We also have our approach to bring to the play – to be high service-oriented company, as well as a standards based approach. Google and Microsoft have an agenda – we’re focussed on just being a computing company.”

“BigTable is very exciting to use, but you have just one place to use it. And that’s Google. We’d love to see some standards around these next generation datastores.”

“MySpace still runs on relational databases, they just shard it to death. There’s going to be a better way.”

“We allow people to get out of contracts to get to the right service for them, to get to the right technology for them”

“If you think people in your company are not going to build little wikis, blogs, team sites and so on, you’re wrong. Cloud computing lets you get them what they need quickly rather than in a month”

“To run things at this scale, there are no tools to do it. 100’s of thousands of customers, you can’t do it well with other tools such as VMware. We’ve found we have to build our own. Also the tools are really expensive, it really changes the economics. What people want is Linux and Microsoft servers fast.”

“I think that cloud offers mature, more and more is going to get abstracted. Most APIs are going to be fairly similar. Bigger issues is around platforms as a service – Azure, App Engine. There is a lot of prescription, but in return you don’t have to do much.”

“We want to drive next generation standards”

“I think people will try and find solutions that help them cut corners and go faster. Companies need to do due diligence on where there is lock-in and where there isn’t”

“Every IT department has to get involved in cloud computing, because every department just wants to get their job done and they will go out there and use these things. If you’re not careful you’ll lose control very fast.”