Top Cloud Practitioners Come to Europe to Talk Big Data

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John Breslin's picture
John Breslin is a senior lecturer and researcher at NUI Galway, and co-founder of boards.ie, Ireland's largest online community. @johnbreslin

GigaOM is having its first major European conference on the 16th and 17th of October in Amsterdam. With the title "Structure:Europe", the conference features many C-level executives from top technology companies with a focus on big data, internet infrastructures and the cloud. Some of the technologists and business leaders that will be speaking at Structure:Europe include: JP Rangaswami, Chief Scientist with salesforce.com; Bernard Dalle, General Partner in Index Ventures; Bob Jones, Head of CERN openlab; Dan Levin, COO of Box; Tony Lucas, Founder of Flexiant; Amr Awadallah, Founder of Cloudera; and Michelle Munson, CEO of Aspera. We also have a 40% discount on registration for our readers.

Whether we realise it or not, many of us have become accustomed to working with the cloud, whether it be accessing movies, music and other forms of entertainment online or co-authoring and sharing documents using Google Drive, Box and Office 365. In cloud computing, computing power and storage is leveraged from a cloud of machines that may be physically removed from a local user or application. The distribution of processing power and data requirements across very many machines allows more powerful computing tasks to be carried out than a single local computing device could manage (see "Cloud Computing: From Capacity To Capability").

Structure:Europe will look at emerging technologies and issues in relation to cloud computing and the corresponding growth in big data. According to Alison Murdock from GigaOM: "We are bringing the best cloud practitioners, from the US and Europe, together to talk about big data, APIs, federated clouds. We'll have the head engineer of Facebook, Marten Mickos of Eucalyptus, Werner Vogels of Amazon, and lots more."

One of the companies that will feature at Structure:Europe is DataSift, a social data insights platform from the UK. Founder Nick Halstead will be a speaker at the conference. We previously interviewed DataSift's Sarah Blow about the filtering technology underpinning DataSift that allows for highly-refined searches to be able to take place across a selection of social networking platforms.

Another of the speakers is Scott Dietzen, CEO of Pure Storage, a provider of flash data storage solutions for enterprise. Five years ago, we spoke to Scott about software-as-a-service (SaaS) and the cloud when he was President at Zimbra. Now, Scott's focus is on speeding up access to the data used by cloud services in data centres. A 10x increase in speeds is possible by using flash drives based on SSD (solid state drive) technology, as well associated space and energy savings.

Expertise in cloud computing has grown significantly in Ireland over the past few years. Zartis provides recruitment solutions powered by the cloud. JLizard's Logentries is a cloud-based system that collects and analyses log entries from large software systems. Northern Ireland company AirPOS provides vendors with point-of-sale solutions from the cloud. FeedHenry spoke to us earlier this year about their cloud-based mobile application system. Inishtech's cloud-based platform for intellectual property protection serves over 100 clients. Cork Institute of Technology launched two new cloud computing courses in 2011 and some graduate conversion courses in 2012. And US company Marketo also announced significant job hiring for its Dublin-based cloud operations recently.

Big data and its impact on internet infrastructures is 'big' here too, especially as we all struggle to deal with the information overload associated with increasing amounts of data. Polecat's MeaningMine aims to provide meaningful answers from big data. Linked data is a means to relate disconnected datasets to each other, and has been proposed as a new layer for the Internet by DERI (the world's largest Semantic Web research institute). Also from DERI, Sindice have created a semantic search facility based on data-as-a-service (DaaS) through a cloud-scalable infrastructure that ingests 100 million semantic documents per day.

The word cloud on the right, built from the Structure:Europe schedule, gives you an idea of some of the topics to be covered. The main focus is on big data; innovation in infrastructure; cloud adoption across Europe; regulatory concerns - privacy and policy; IaaS and PaaS; public cloud vs. private cloud; and venture capital investment in cloud.

If you're a player in the cloud computing and big data space in Ireland or elsewhere, Structure:Europe should be an essential event.

Readers of Technology Voice can use this link to save 40% on registration - http://structureeurope2012.eventbrite.com/?discount=TECHVO40OFF - or just use promotional code "TECHVO40OFF" at registration. For further questions, please email the GigaOM team.

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