GovCloud Network

A GovCloud Network Property

Thursday, December 30, 2010

NIST Cloud Computing Collaboration Twiki Launches


Today I received my credentials for the NIST Cloud Computing Collaboration Site.


"The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has been designated by Federal Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra to accelerate the federal government’s secure adoption of cloud computing by leading efforts to develop standards and guidelines in close consultation and collaboration with standards bodies, the private sector, and other stakeholders. Computer science researchers at NIST are working on two complementary efforts to speed the government’s quick and secure adoption of cloud computing.

NIST's long term goal is to provide thought leadership and guidance around the cloud computing paradigm to catalyze its use within industry and government. NIST aims to shorten the adoption cycle, which will enable near-term cost savings and increased ability to quickly create and deploy safe and secure enterprise applications. NIST aims to foster cloud computing systems and practices that support interoperability, portability, and security requirements that are appropriate and achievable for important usage scenarios."

Membership for participation on the this Cloud Computing Wiki site is open to the public. If you want to contribute content to this wiki, please go to NIST Cloud Computing Program website, read the page carefully and follow the instructions. The current working group meeting schedule is provided below.


Complete information on all the working groups is available online at:
http://collaborate.nist.gov/twiki-cloud-computing/bin/view/CloudComputing/WebHome

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GovCloud Predicitons for 2011

Happy New Year All!!

2011 will be the breakout year for GovCloud! Pressure to reduce budget, pressure to manage I resources better and the political pressure of the next presidential election will combine to accelerate adoption. The GSA IaaS groundwork has been laid and new policies are just about ready to be released !!

Here are my predictions for GovCloud!

  1. The US Federal government will award over $2B in cloud computing related contracts. The USDA and GSA email deals are just the beginning. GSA final approval to the 11 government IaaS awardees will open the floodgate to rapid cloud experimentation. Lack of a final 2011 Federal budget will make cloud computing one of the few viable options for executing new IT programs next year.
  2. The European Union will establish a European community cloud computing strategy and governance framework similar to the US FedRAMP program. Even with its flaws, FedRamp will become a model for government cloud adoption globally. The European Community won't just standby and let American global cloud computing hegemony reign wild.
  3. Major cyber attacks coupled with the rapid adoption of cloud computing by governments will cause a crescendo in security concerns. Wikileakes is just the beginning! The general public will not recognize the technical distinctions between events and clump them all into the category of "attacks on the cloud". Politicians out of power will rant and rave about how cloud computing threatens US national security. Cybersecurity wonks from both sides of the aisle will do major battle.
  4. Concerns regarding national sovereignty vis-à-vis economic advantages of using cloud computing threaten to slow the growth of international government cloud computing. Other countries will take note of the Korean cloud computing industry's rapid rise. Government leaders will then focus on the politics of not having their own national cloud computing capability.
  5. Major cloud providers will adopt common, interoperable infrastructure-as-a-service technical standards.Cloud computing network effect will trump industrial rivalry. This transition will drive all towards making IaaS even more of a commodity through the adoption of interoperable virtual machine and cloud storage standards.


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Thursday, December 9, 2010

Vivek Kundra Unveils 25-Point IT Management Reform Program

Yesterday the US Federal CIO, Vivek Kundra, unveiled an ambitious 25-point implementation plan for delivering more value to the American taxpayer. This plan focuses on execution and is designed
to establish early wins Some highlights of the implementation plan include:
  • Turnaround or terminate at least one-third of underperforming projects in IT portfolio within the next 18 months
  • Shift to “Cloud First” policy. Each agency will identify three “must move” services within three months, and move one of those services to the cloud within 12 month and the remaining two within 18 months.
  • Reduce number of Federal data centers by at least 800 by 2015










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Saturday, December 4, 2010

GSA and Unisys/Google Marks GovCloud Watershed





As widely reported this week, the United States General Services Administration (GSA) has awarded a contract to Unisys to create a secure cloud-based email and collaboration platform. The solution will be based on Google Apps for Government and is expected to save $15M over the next five years when compared to current staff, infrastructure, and contract support costs.

The award will provide up to 17,000 GSA employees and contractors worldwide with enhanced collaboration services, including email with expanded storage, as well as full access to Google Apps collaboration tools including Google Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Sites.


The government also extended the public comment period for the The Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program or FedRAMP. This program has been established to provide a standard approach to Assessing and Authorizing (A&A) cloud computing services and products. FedRAMP allows joint authorizations and continuous security monitoring services for Government and Commercial cloud computing systems intended for multi-agency use. The risk model will also enable the government to "approve once, and use often" by ensuring multiple agencies gain the benefit and insight of the FedRAMP's Authorization and access to service provider’s authorization packages.

In 2009 the government discovered cloud computing. Now 2010 is clearly the year of implementation.

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