Saturday, July 27, 2013

Here's Professional Point's Summary of SAAS Pros and Cons

From the blog at Professionals Point,

Software as a Service (SaaS) is a type of Cloud Computing. SaaS is a software distribution model in which applications are hosted by a vendor or service provider and made available to customers over a network, typically the Internet. SaaS is also known as "on-demand software". In SaaS, software and associated data are centrally hosted on the cloud. SaaS is typically accessed by users using a thin client via a web browser.

Advantages of Software as a Service (SaaS)

1. SaaS (Software as a Service) is Cheap

Software as a Service allows organizations to access business functionality at a cost typically less than paying for licensed applications since SaaS pricing is based on a monthly fee. Unlike traditional software which is conventionally sold as a perpetual license with an up-front cost (and an optional ongoing support fee), SaaS providers generally price applications using a subscription fee, most commonly a monthly fee or an annual fee.

2. Less Hardware Required with SaaS (Software as a Service)

Software is hosted remotely, so business organizations don't need to invest in additional hardware. To support scalability, the application is installed on multiple machines (called horizontal scaling).

3. Little Maintenance Required with SaaS (Software as a Service)

Software as a Service removes the need for organizations to handle the installation, set-up and often daily upkeep and maintenance. Initial setup cost for SaaS is typically lower than the equivalent enterprise software. SaaS vendors typically price their applications based on some usage parameters, such as the number of users using the application. So SaaS provides easier administration. SaaS does automatic updates and patch management. No compatability issues will arise by using Saas as all users will have the same version of software. SaaS reduces IT support costs by outsourcing hardware and software maintenance and support to the SaaS provider.

Diadvantages of SaaS (Software as a Service)

1. Security Issue: As data is stored on cloud, security becomes a major issue.

2. Latency Issue: Again as data is stored in cloud far away from end user, it may take more transactional time as compared to traditional approach. So, SaaS model is not suitable for applications that demand response times in the milliseconds.

3. Total Dependency on Internet: Relying on an Internet connection means that data is transferred to and from a SaaS firm at Internet speeds, rather than the potentially higher speeds of a firm’s internal network.

4. Switching between SaaS vendors is difficult: Switching SaaS vendors may involve the slow and difficult task of transferring very large data files over the Internet.

Applications of SaaS (Software as a Service)

SaaS has become a common delivery model for many business applications, including accounting, collaboration, customer relationship management (CRM), management information systems (MIS), enterprise resource planning (ERP), invoicing, human resource management (HRM), content management (CM) and service desk management.

Future of SaaS (Software as a Service)

SaaS is becoming an increasingly prevalent delivery model as underlying technologies that support Web services and service-oriented architecture (SOA) mature and new developmental approaches, such as AJAX, become popular. Meanwhile, broadband service has become increasingly available to support user access from more areas around the world.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Suburban Washington DC makes a good base of operations

Montgomery County (adjacent to Washington DC) has been named top digital jurisdiction in the country in its population category (500,000+) in the 2013 Digital Counties Survey that recognizes the effective and efficient use of digital technologies in serving residents, streamlining operations and achieving measurable benefits.

Survey questions covered areas such as computing, networking, applications, data and cybersecurity, open government and mobile services. The County’s openMontgomery site was cited in a Government Technology article as an example of a digital initiative that enables County residents, businesses, partners and an increasingly mobile workforce to access high-quality digital government information and services anywhere, anytime, and in multiple ways.


Monday, July 8, 2013

Want a Hellfire Missile with that Pizza?

So now you can (theoretically) get a pizza to your door... by drone delivery. Of course, many legitimate non-military uses of drones exist -- fighting wild fires is very topical this summer, even if jurisdictions are holding off, for now. Domino’s Pizza in the U.K. recently grabbed attention with a YouTube video of a drone delivering pizzas.

Driverless cars could also impact how we move goods around, not to mention ourselves. VW conceptualized a utility vehicle called the eT! The eT! drives semi-autonomously on voice commands such as "follow me" and "come to me", among other tricks.

Drones in commercial use could be boosted by another project. The Matternet is being developed in three stages. In the first stage, the Matternet team anticipates carrying loads of one to two kilograms. The team's prototype (pictured above) can already do this, but its autonomous capabilities have not yet been tested. During the second stage, the autonomous vehicles will carry 200 kilograms, and automated solar-powered recharging stations will be installed on the ground. In the third stage, the vehicles will be able to carry up to 1,000 kilograms--so they will be able to transport both goods and people. The prototype AAVs are quadcopters that have a range of 10 kilometers, but the technology may change as the project advances.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

iWatch -- TV?

What if everyone (except me, of course) is wrong, and Apple's next big thing is not a smart watch at all, but -- ready for it -- a cool TV appliance?

Forbes is gearing up with all sorts of rumors. And everyone is on the smart watch bandwagon.

Does Tim Cook understand that the TV experience is not “just about TV,” but also how “the viewer” interacts? Cutting cable and other ways people view television is changing amazingly fast. Apple can be a game-changer if the company comes up with a way to watch content and manage the way we interface with media (and the commercials that pay for it). iWatch different(ly).

Saturday, July 6, 2013

With US spying, Europe-based Cloud Offerings Star Rising

Fallout over US snooping (hoovering?) of Internet traffic means many firms and individuals see European Union privacy protection laws as a boon. And the cloud offerings based in Europe should see higher demand.

From Wikipedia, The Data Protection Directive (officially Directive 95/46/EC on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data) is a European Union directive which regulates the processing of personal data within the European Union. It is an important component of EU privacy and human rights law.

Reuters: European firms believe revelations that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has secretly gathered user data from nine big U.S. Internet companies, including Microsoft and Google, will hand them a competitive advantage as they play catch-up with the dominant American players in "cloud computing". Last year the French government ploughed 150 million euros ($200 million) into two start-ups, including the data centre's owner Cloudwatt, to equip the country with infrastructure independent of U.S. cloud computing giants.

Read more at ZDnet.