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National Science Foundation Awards $20 Million For Cloud Computing Experiments

samzenpus posted about three weeks ago | from the paying-the-way-to-the-future dept.

The Almighty Buck 25

aarondubrow writes The National Science Foundation today announced two $10 million projects to create cloud computing testbeds — to be called "Chameleon" and "CloudLab" — that will enable the academic research community to experiment with novel cloud architectures and pursue new, architecturally-enabled applications of cloud computing. While most of the original concepts for cloud computing came from the academic research community, as clouds grew in popularity, industry drove much of the design of their architecture. Today's awards complement industry's efforts and enable academic researchers to advance cloud computing architectures that can support a new generation of innovative applications, including real-time and safety-critical applications like those used in medical devices, power grids, and transportation systems.

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too little, too late (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47718469)

Come on, only 20M for something that can have far reaching implications for anything related with big data analysis, whether it is medicine, physics, biology etc, is just pathetic.

Re:too little, too late (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47718523)

I'm sure the NSA has spent 100X that amount on the subject.

What do they mean by cloud? (2)

lemur3 (997863) | about three weeks ago | (#47718653)

Whenever these kinds of stories come up I really wonder what they mean by "cloud computing"

do they mean "virtualized computing" like the virtual compute stuff on Amazon EC2/Microsoft Azure/Google Cloud ?

or do they mean "Cloud" in the sense that people refer to Dropbox as 'the cloud' or any other server storage/service thing?

Certainly if they are referring to the latter.. this kind of spending is mostly a waste, we know how to make server farms at datacenters...

if it's the former, what good is a mere 10million going to do when the big names in the industry, microsoft,google,amazon, ibm ..and others... are spending way more researhing and developing it?

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (3)

Lennie (16154) | about three weeks ago | (#47718851)

Why do people think "virtualized computing" is cloud ? It isn't. Because a VMWare cluster isn't cloud.

Cloud has characteristics like:
- pay per use
- API to control it, so it can be automated
- a failure model, like availability zones. So you know that things are 100 % seperated so if one AZ goes down an other AZ does not depend on it.
- etc.

Nobody says it has to be virtual either, you can get physical machines from Rackspace or Softlayer.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47718875)

Cloud has characteristics like:

-Consists of vapour (not necessarely water)
-Is a silver bullet (any IT-problem)
-Strong SEP field (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Somebody_Else%27s_Problem#Fiction)
-Drawn in powerpoints as a fluffy, obscure image resembling a cloud (hence the name)

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (1)

RicktheBrick (588466) | about three weeks ago | (#47720455)

IBM advertises cloud computing. Why would they care if I know about their cloud? At the same time IBM is a sponsor of World Community Grid. WCG is the opposite of cloud computing as it is distributed computing. IBM ask for volunteers to give them access to their computers to solve a given problem. I think this is wrong since the total cost of all the volunteers to do the computing is more than IBM would spend to do the same amount of computing. I know that the cost per billion flops for a super computer is far less than I pay for on this computer. IBM does not pay for the computing since they are volunteers. If IBM could ask the volunteers to give them even half of the expenses that they have by volunteering their computers, than both would be better off. But how would it look if IBM asked for donations to support their cloud computing? IBM should build enough computing power in their cloud so that they could continue WCG without asking for volunteers. By doing that they would show prospective users that they have the power to solve any of their problems.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47718959)

All of your definitions are for a very specific (even proprietory) definition of "cloud computing"

None of them are part of any of the original usages.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47719011)

Why do people think "virtualized computing" is cloud ? It isn't. Because a VMWare cluster isn't cloud.

Cloud has characteristics like:
- pay per use
- API to control it, so it can be automated
- a failure model, like availability zones. So you know that things are 100 % seperated so if one AZ goes down an other AZ does not depend on it.
- etc.

Nobody says it has to be virtual either, you can get physical machines from Rackspace or Softlayer.

Uh, why do people think virtualized computing is cloud? You're seriously asking that question when AWS has pretty much dominated it for the last couple of years? C'mon, this isn't that hard to draw the parallel. It's a damn offering. From a current provider. Spin up VMs all you want in the "cloud", with pretty much the features you've described.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47719039)

So a mobile phone network is cloud service and it's been around since the 90s.
It's such a stupid name.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (2)

sillybilly (668960) | about three weeks ago | (#47720719)

You still, get to keep some of your data on your cellphone memory. True cloud computing is where you can get blackmailed for access to your data, plus government snooping is automated, with common sense network traffic monitoring therefore inspection at each access instance to your data by you, as opposed to the feds raiding your house to look at your hard drives, which in the old days required a warrant, so you could keep accessing your own data for free, without having to pay ransom for it constantly. For now you don't get blackmailed over your cloud stored data, because there are many legal, offline competitor alternatives. Alternatives which have to be eliminated by those pent up on blackmailing you for some good ransom money in the future. It's so hard to make money on software, by trying to sell you an operating system as a subscription service with daily security patches that patch the patches that patch the patches.. it's a joke, so a business model where the operating system is free, but you hand over the data and pay each time you access it, sounds like a much more workable one, to those whose daily bread comes from computer software related things..Why work hard to make new software when the old stuff was much better, when you can just sit back and get fat collecting over cloud data storage ransom fees? Of course there is a fair price, in that they do have to provide the cloud infrastructure, they buy the harddrives and you get to rent them, as opposed to having your own, and there is sometimes a fair rent price, but in the free market the usual question is not what a fair, economic benefit and accordingly price such a service should carry, but instead, what is the price the market is willing to bear under blackmailing situations? Only the commies would ever dream of calculating fair prices, and assigning them to everything in the economy, as in absolute 100% price control on everything, instead of letting the free market manage it, and as their case proved, instead of economic efficiency and fairness and justice, all they created were empty stores and people standing in line at the stores, because the prices were so cheap, and miscalculated, that every time it arrived at the store it fully sold out. In a blackmail prone situation, as in, if you're a city dweller, you have to stand in line for bread, no matter what the price of bread, you're getting blackmailed. Usually in the commie era it was the self reliant independently able to exist without a job or even a government villages, where free independent growing of food still went on anyway, and they were the ones who constantly kept the city dwellers decently fed. The only issue a village has is military security, for which it needs a city like contraption, or at the very least a monastery like scientific advancement zone, to where the villagers provide the excess production to sustain these "parasites" who can defend them against an invasion

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (1)

Alopex (1973486) | about three weeks ago | (#47721367)

There's an extension for Chrome that will translate all of this confusing "cloud" nonsense for all of us into something clear and accurate: https://chrome.google.com/webs... [google.com]

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47719171)

Well, in the article (yea, I know) it provides a definition::

Cloud computing refers to the practice of using a network of remote servers to store, manage and process data, rather than a local server or a personal computer.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47719293)

My calculations went into the cloud and I can't get them back! Nobody understands the cloud! (sorry, trailer channeling)

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (3, Interesting)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about three weeks ago | (#47719371)

Whenever these kinds of stories come up I really wonder what they mean by "cloud computing"

Cloud computing got popular when thin client got boring. These marketing generalizations always drive me crazy. If you have an on-line storage or backup service, just call it that. If it is on-line music streaming service, web based office tools, whatever just call it what it is. Otherwise, you just piss off those that get it and confuse those that don't.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47722963)

...confuse those that don't.

and get $20 million in compensation for your efforts.

the whole point of market speak is to confuse/hypnotize the stupid into giving up their coin.

Re:What do they mean by cloud? (1)

GaryW (22230) | about three weeks ago | (#47720833)

You're right, "cloud computing" is a hopelessly vague term, and the headline by itself does very little to describe what these projects are. In the standard set of buzzwords, "infrastructure as a service" probably comes closest.

But read the first link text carefully -- these are "projects to create cloud computing testbeds". Not creating clouds; creating testbeds in which cloud experiments can be conducted. The users of these testbeds are NOT users of a "cloud"; the users of these testbeds bring up their OWN clouds (or other experiments). In commercial clouds such as EC2, users have control over one or more VMs; instead, these projects are intended to give users control over everything, down to and including the hardware (compute servers, switches, network links...).

As the CloudLab web page says, "the bare metal's the limit".

The problem is well understood (1)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | about three weeks ago | (#47718657)

It is easy to talk about clouds when you are a bird but it is harder when you are a frog or maybe a cracket who is related to other thing in a basket of the clodes that was on my ham saertfowmspoa on the CIA of regail us with your shimmering imperialist wizardry of light and magic signifying a deaf white noise in "justice" my foot!

We sure could use the rain (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47718815)

but how effective is cloud seeding anyway? We used to call these things rain dances... with indian in front but P.C. nowadaysdonchano.

They have a solution... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47719257)

So they decided cloud computing is the solution... Now they want to fund someone to define a problem for it to solve...

More like a fog ... (1)

CaptainDork (3678879) | about three weeks ago | (#47719807)

... or, more accurately, smog.

The systems the cloud is running on has been compromised and is available to exploits out the wazoo. Let's patch that first.

Re:More like a fog ... (1)

jon3k (691256) | about three weeks ago | (#47722265)

I'd avoid using Fog Computing [cisco.com] because Cisco already claimed that phrase.

Re:More like a fog ... (1)

CaptainDork (3678879) | about three weeks ago | (#47723443)

Thanks for pointing that out. I didn't know about it.

I like this:

"One way to address this [an expanded cloud] is through Fog Computing. This is a paradigm where cloud computing is extended to the edge of the network. This creates a highly virtualized platform that provides compute, storage, and networking services between end devices and traditional cloud computing data centers."

Maybe in the next iteration, it will include synergy.

CloudLab URL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47720325)

The story currently links "CloudLab" to the Chameleon Cloud. Oops!

The correct URL for CloudLab is: https://cloudlab.us/

The term is Grid Computing (2)

WaffleMonster (969671) | about three weeks ago | (#47721035)

Cloud this cloud that... I'm sick of clouds.

If IAU gets to redefine popular language to align with scientific language having specific and unambiguous meaning why can't "Cloud" banner be wrestled out the clutches of marketeers?

Everything is networked running off some datacenter somewhere... saying "the cloud" is like saying "the thing" .. you might as well say nothing at all as this conveys about the same amount of useful information.

Please I implore you all to stop being a bunch of sissy care bears enough with "cloud". Let the meme die already.

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