In cloud computing, Scalability is not equal to Elasticity and Vice Versa.

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I believe that it’s important to understand terms. And to understand terms scalability and elasticity in cloud computing context, I did a little research on what is the difference between scalability and elasticity when used in context of cloud computing.

e·las·tic·i·ty: The ability of something to change and adapt; adaptability [Dictionary]

scal·a·ble: Able to be changed in size or scale [Dictionary]

So my first step was to lookup meaning of each word in dictionary and honestly, that did helped me understand the meaning of each word but I was not able to appreciate the use of each word in cloud computing terms. I researched a little more came to a conclusion that

  • When we talk about elasticity – it is from cloud platform perspective. By this I mean, it is the characteristic of the “cloud platform” that allows end users to spawn resources in no time. For instance, with a click of a mouse, end users are able to spawn a 10 GIG SQL Azure database. And this characteristic that allows end users to QUICKLY provision resources is what is referred to as elasticity. And alternatively, De-provisioning is “elastic” too. From, a cloud vendor perspective, these means they also should report usage to the end-user and charge end-users for only what they use. It’s important as one of the important characteristic of cloud is that it is supposed to be “Measurable” by end-user
  • Scalability: It refers to ability of an “application” (NOT cloud) to handle INCREASED workload. Traditionally, to meet increased workload, hardware was thrown at the problem. But it had it’s own set of limitation that it was not infinitely scalable because hardware could be upgraded to certain limit only. Now in cloud computing era, we can provision as many resources as we need – but it is important to architect the application in a way that embraces “scalability”. So when you deploy an app on a cloud platform, it does NOT “scale” automatically and the app should be architected to embrace scalability – On other hand, you are guaranteed “elasticity” by the cloud vendor.

Let’s take an example.

Suppose I have an app and I wish to deploy it on Windows Azure. Now, it’s my responsibility to architect app to embrace scalability by making my application stateless, etc, etc. Now once I have architected my app to embrace scalability – I deploy it on Windows Azure. And here, Windows Azure gives my app the “elasticity” it may need. That means, I can provision/de-provision resources at my will.

Thus, In cloud computing,

Scalability ≠ Elasticity

Quick summary of Ideas that I have logged at My Great Windows Azure Idea site

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Last updated on 27th march 2012

just a quick summary of few ideas I have submitted on http://www.mygreatwindowsazureidea.com

IDEA Status

multiple SQL Azure servers (located in different data center) under single subscription

Completed

Ability to have more than one account administrator and/or service administrator for SQL Azure

Completed

Email Weekly / Daily billing summary

Open

Restrict co administrator’s to access only a specific Azure service component

Open

Feature to schedule exports to Azure Storage Via SQL Azure Import/Export

Open

Ability to upload a file to windows azure blobs directly via Azure management portal

Open

part 5 of “Getting started with SQL Azure” is live!

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Aim of “Getting started with SQL Azure” series is to offer you a set of brief articles that could act as a Launchpad for your to-be wonderful journey of exploring Microsoft’s cloud based database solution i.e. SQL Azure.

In part 5, I have discussed the SQL Azure security model:

URL: http://beyondrelational.com/blogs/parasdoshi/archive/2011/10/25/getting-started-with-sql-azure-part-5-lt-lt-paras-doshi.aspx

Summary:

Part 1: We defined SQL Azure and discussed advantages of SQL Azure

Part 2: We created an Azure account and created our very first SQL Azure database

Part 3: We discussed about the provisioning and the billing model of SQL Azure

part4: We discussed the SQL Azure architecture

part 5: we discussed the SQL Azure security model

I gave back at Dallas GiveCamp – And why I think every software professional should consider doing so too!

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Dallas GiveCamp

Couple of months ago, I stumbled upon a blog that had a logo of GiveCamp and the title that said “I support GiveCamp” – And curiosity got better of me and i clicked on the logo. And I landed on a page whose tagline “Coding for charity” was all I wanted to read. And I understood I would be developing a software for NGO – I was in! And (Lucky me!) there was one GiveCamp scheduled to happen in Dallas and so I signed up!

From my perspective, this is why I think it’s one of the best platforms for software professionals to volunteer:

I have volunteered at places where I paint, teach, serve food, etc – things that does not leverage what I do best.For instance, I volunteered at a place where I got to paint few walls. And since I had never painted houses before, it took me little time to figure it out and yes, I was not optimal in using paint. Now, Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy volunteering in any form – But a volunteering opportunity like GiveCamp that directly leverages what i am good at, is a Win-Win situation for me as well as the charity. So kudos to the person who came up with the idea and actually executed it. And kudos to organizers of various GiveCamp’s who must have put in countless hours to give a platform for volunteers and charities to connect and work together to create a software in short span of 48 hours!

I know! it’s an Amazing concept! Now, After my first GiveCamp – I am definitely going back next year [Update 2 Nov 2012: I volunteered at Dallas Give Camp 2012 too!] but five reasons of why I think every software professional should do so too:

– Make an impact

– Have fun

– Meet amazing campies!

– Learn things. Yes, i learned few things about WordPress that i didn’t knew before

– bag Goodies! Like books, computer hardware, magazine subscription, XBOX! etc..

And so if you have not been a part of GiveCamp, consider doing so. Even if you develop software’s on weekday’s – i bet, this experience of developing software for charity over a weekend is not just about “developing a software”. It’s much more than that…

Also don’t worry much if you are traveling from far – you can just sleep under the desk! Yes, people do that – and guess what, that is what camping is all about, isn’t it?!

And so, I had fun at this GiveCamp – And I bet you would too!

GiveCamp Site: givecamp.org

Dallas GiveCamp Site: DallasGiveCamp.org

And since this blogpost was not about what i did at GiveCamp – i leave you with our presentation:

View more presentations from Paras Doshi
And Thanks to my Team mates – i had a great time with you all!
And Twitter List of Organizers, Charities, Volunteers and Sponsors:
Group Photo: [Courtesy: @t_burger ]
Give Camp Paras Doshi Dallas TX

SQLPASS 2011 was amazing!

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I had never attended a conference of this scale before – so for me, it was a novel experience! An experience I will cherish (Until I get a chance to attend the next PASS!). And I am just amazed at kind of work the PASS board and volunteers must have put in to make this all happen. I remember a time when I was a lead organizer for a national level technical festival for just 500 attendees – and trust me when I say I had no chance to rest for 3-4 weeks straight. So when I see a conference that is 10x in size and 100x in reputation – All I can do is stare in amazement:

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(Image Courtesy: dpshots)

So what did I do at SQLPASS?!

– Attended sessions to learn, relearn (and unlearn!)

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( Image courtesy: http://www.lubbockstarprogram.com/?page_id=37 )

– Attended keynotes! Awesome announcements!! And on day three, I had the pleasure of seeing Dr. Dewitt live! – it was awesome!

– Went to parties ( I loved the SolidQ party and the Game works party)

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Image courtesy: http://www.watton.org/clipart/party/party.shtml

– Met Amazing people who are passionate about same things I am!

– Met people who are part of the team that are responsible for developing/delivering products that I use daily => Met people with blue badges!

– Slept a little!

– Explored Seattle after PASS summit

– Volunteered as PASS ambassador

What was my job?! To guide people to find what they were looking for. So what I had to scout for confused faces – offer then help – point them to places – that’s about it.

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– And tweeted a little during SQLPASS! #sqlpass rocks!

So yup – I enjoyed SQLPASS!

Cross Posted from: http://beyondrelational.com/blogs/parasdoshi/archive/2011/10/17/sqlpass-2011-was-amazing.aspx

Part 4 of “Getting started with SQL Azure” is live!

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Aim of “Getting started with SQL Azure” series is to offer you a set of brief articles that could act as a Launchpad for your to-be wonderful journey of exploring Microsoft’s cloud based database solution i.e. SQL Azure.

In this blog post, I have discussed the SQL Azure architecture. Link:

http://beyondrelational.com/blogs/parasdoshi/archive/2011/10/10/getting-started-with-sql-azure-part-4-lt-lt-paras-doshi.aspx

Just to recap:

In part 3, i have discussed:

1. Provisioning model of SQL Azure

2. Billing Model of SQL Azure

read more: Getting started with SQL Azure – Part 3 << Paras Doshi

In part 2, i have discussed:

1) How to sign up for a Free trial of windows azure (to play with SQL Azure)!

2) How to create your very first SQL Azure database (and a table too!)

3) How to connect to SQL Azure server Via SQL server Management studio.

Read more: Getting started with SQL Azure – Part 2 << Paras Doshi

And in part 1, i have discussed

1) Where SQL Azure fits in the windows azure platform?

2) Defined SQL Azure

3) Advantages of SQL Azure

Read More: Getting started with SQL Azure – Part 1 << Paras Doshi

Joining University of Washington’s certificate in cloud computing program!

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I’ll be joining the web version of the University of Washington’s certificate in cloud computing program.

I have researched on cloud for a while now and to me, it seems like a right time to study cloud in more detail. And what’s more – it’s University of Washington and so the faculty teaching courses are top-notch. And so I hope to learn from the veterans and awesome academicians via this certificate program.

Program Information: http://www.pce.uw.edu/certificates/cloud-computing.html

 

Related posts:

http://parasdoshi.com/2011/09/27/proof-that-the-word-cloud-computing-has-replaced-distributed-computing-2/

http://parasdoshi.com/2011/08/01/presented-on-what-mobile-devices-plus-cloud-computing-mean-for-the-real-world-at-ignite-ahmedabad/

http://parasdoshi.com/2011/07/07/cloud-computing-is-awesome-defining-cloud-computing-the-urban-dictionary-style/