Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Businesses IT

Want an IT Job? Add 'Cloud' To Your Buzzword List 187

Posted by samzenpus
from the resume-in-the-sky dept.
jfruhlinger writes "There was a predicted uptick in IT hiring for late this year, but it's mid-November and it hasn't happened yet. Kevin Fogarty does see growth in one area, though: cloud and virtualization experts are being fought over, lured away from in-house jobs to cloud consultancies popping up everywhere."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Want an IT Job? Add 'Cloud' To Your Buzzword List

Comments Filter:
  • clouds huh? (Score:2, Funny)

    by knotprawn (1935752)
    sounds like rather clouded judgement to me
    • Yeah my vision is foggy.

      Please show my an example IT resume that revolves around "cloud" programming, so I can copy it.

      'k thx. L8r

  • they purdy.

  • by grasshoppa (657393) <skennedy AT tpno-co DOT org> on Thursday November 18, 2010 @04:30AM (#34265910) Homepage

    I think it's important to define the word "Cloud" as no one else seems to, yet the definition itself lends great insight to the concept.

    The "Cloud", as referenced here, is nothing more than the delegation of responsibilities...specifically those of infrastructure. That's it. It's not some mystical cure all. In fact, it's nothing more than a glorified way to outsource applications.

    Now there are specific technologies which lend themselves to this concept ( those of virtualization, certainly ), but the overall goal is the same; the business doesn't want to worry about the infrastructure behind their app. They simply want it to work.

    Which is why internal "clouds" have always amused me to no end...

    • by ebonum (830686)

      What does "cloud" mean? It means that I will eat you alive if I see it on your resume.

      People can not talk intelligently about this subject. There are completely open issues from SLA's to security to handling 20 different versions of the OS on the servers in the "cloud". I include Steve Balmer on my list of people who can't clearly define this concept.

      You ask people what is the cloud and they give "e-mail" or YouTube or an e-commerce site as an example.

      • by Belial6 (794905) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @05:07AM (#34266046)
        I can define the cloud for you. Cloud (noun) : The symbol used to indicate parts of the network that you have no knowledge of. Frequently used by people to describe external computer resources as a new concept when their knowledge of computers only extends back to 1998.
        • by BlindRobin (768267) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @05:51AM (#34266208)
          synonym of 'fog'.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by dkf (304284)

          The symbol used to indicate parts of the network that you have no knowledge of.

          That's the definition as it pertains to networking. It's now been extended to other types of hardware and certain types of software, and it all works on the concept of "I don't know where it is or what it looks like, but I do know that if I wave my hands like this then it all works just fine." As long as things actually do work, then that's a good thing: you're saved the effort of thinking about lots of frankly irrelevant crap (well, irrelevant to you; someone cares about it...)

          • by anegg (1390659)

            The "cloud" icon on a network diagram is often used to represent a portion of a network the details of which are not considered important for the purpose of the diagram. Whether or not that is because the person who drew the diagram didn't understand them is a separate issue. Perhaps the diagrammer didn't think his/her audience would understand them.

            The "cloud" used in "cloud computing" seems to be used in two different ways. The first (less interesting) way is to describe IT services provided by a thir

      • by Chrisq (894406)

        What does "cloud" mean? It means that I will eat you alive if I see it on your resume.

        Tell them you worked on Cloud computing on "Plan 9 [wikipedia.org]". If pushed just say "I've been on cloud 9 for years now".

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by benjamindees (441808)

      Which is why internal "clouds" have always amused me to no end...

      Personally, as a *nix generalist, even the idea of an external "cloud" is ridiculous to me. What the hell does a company actually do, if it outsources even it's own knowledge management?

      But I agree that an internal "cloud" is just as misguided. The sad fact is that most companies with more than a few hundred employees are organized as collections of surprisingly small fiefdoms. Even until recently, the idea of centralizing something as common as IT infrastructure really was so foreign to the typical corp

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by sourcerror (1718066)

        I sat through a cloud lecture by some Microsoft guy, and he said it's aimed at startups, that don't know what server load to expect, and want a scalable solution. Practically Microsoft hosts the app with database and everything, the app must be written against a specific cloud api (in some .net language), and they bill by CPU time, network throughput and database size.

        • [...] the app must be written against a specific cloud api (in some .net language)[...]

          That's PaaS (Platform as a service), that's what I would expect from MS, leading to vendor lock-in with specific API's, it could have been more open and portable to your own servers or other PaaS providers. This is the "here are my balls, can you please hold them for a while?" IT planning strategy. It's just not good for you, the party on the squeezing side of the deal however...

          From a customers point of view, IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) would make much more sense: paying for VM domains, memory, ban

        • by jp10558 (748604)

          Isn't this the same as Mainfraimes used to be?

          I think of cloud infrastructure usually as VM clusters of some sort where you can have an entire computer fail and not lose services, and you can basically add more servers if you need more load without having to manually re-configure the services etc. vSphere etc.

      • by Chrisq (894406) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @06:36AM (#34266356)

        What the hell does a company actually do, if it outsources even it's own knowledge management?

        The good news is that they don't have to know what they're doing, someone external will know for them.

      • by anegg (1390659)

        IT service delivery has seen an interesting history (from my perspective). At first was the mainframe. There was only one in most companies. It ran lots of applications. It had its dedicated staff to feed and care for it. It cost a fortune.

        Then came the minicomputer. It too ran many applications. It had a semi-dedicated staff to feed and care for it. But there were many of them in an organization, because they cost a lot less money.

        Then came PCs - they were often dedicated to a single application

    • by digitalhermit (113459) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @05:10AM (#34266058) Homepage

      The "Cloud", as referenced here, is nothing more than the delegation of responsibilities...specifically those of infrastructure. That's it. It's not some mystical cure all. In fact, it's nothing more than a glorified way to outsource applications.

      Well, no. The cloud they referenced was an "abstracted data-center infrastructure" and not necessarily a means of outsourcing applications. Yes, the downside/upside is that it eases moving workloads from internal to external clouds, but that's the point.

      Now there are specific technologies which lend themselves to this concept ( those of virtualization, certainly ), but the overall goal is the same; the business doesn't want to worry about the infrastructure behind their app. They simply want it to work.

      Is that a bad thing not to want to worry about the infrastructure? Traditionally servers are designed around the concept of a physical server. We used to name servers by rack number or some other geographic location. Virtual machines were often named according to what physical server they resided within. Cloud technology, once the marketing speak is burned away and the APIs get to a mature and standard state (i.e., an in-house or an outside hosted cloud looks the same to an application), would allow other ways of managing the hundreds of thousands of machines in large data centers.

      For example, capacity planning is a big deal. One of the responsibilities of a system engineer is to ensure that workloads can run properly on the servers. When there is a planned outage on one server or an increased load due to seasonal or scheduled work, the admins have to juggle the resources of the servers. In a planned outage we may use VMWare VMotion or Workload Migration and swing the workloads across. But then we often have to worry about IP changes, hostnames, virtual host software levels, etc.. With a properly configured internal cloud, this is a non-issue. I can literally click a button and remove a physical server from the cluster and it's completely transparent to end-users. Need to add capacity? I SAN-boot a cloned disk and the new server is automatically part of the cloud and ready to take on work.

      We used to build our environments around managing discrete servers. Even if we had streamlined the process, it was still very much centered around the physical box. For example, we can stand up a box in a manner of minutes using RHEL kickstart, but if we wanted to add high availability this often meant configuring heartbeat IPs, swing SAN disks, /etc/hosts files for private IP ranges, etc.. HA on a cloud is almost too trivial to detail.

      Of course it's not there yet, but it's where the more recent virtualization technologies was 5 years ago (and yeah, virtualilzation has been out for decades, but it has only within the past decade really surged).

      • by syousef (465911) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @05:35AM (#34266150) Journal

        Is that a bad thing not to want to worry about the infrastructure?

        Yes, it's a VERY VERY bad thing if your business and it's reputation relies on said infrastructure.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Brian Quinlan (252202)

          Is that a bad thing not to want to worry about the infrastructure?

          Yes, it's a VERY VERY bad thing if your business and it's reputation relies on said infrastructure.

          I agree. Which is why I would assume that your company manages the following infrastructure internally:

          • Power
          • Connectivity (data and voice both mobile and wired)
          • Transportation (you'd hate for your employees not to be able to get to work because the public roads are super-congested or otherwise unavailable)
          • Water (without working toilets your business is going to be in the crapper pretty quickly)
          • ...
          • by paimin (656338)
            I shit into the cloud, and from the cloud cometh food.
          • by ArsenneLupin (766289) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @06:57AM (#34266426)
            All larger companies do have a "facilities management" department, which does at least some of these:
            • Power: they manage their own on-site power wiring. And UPS and (for some) even an onsite generating station (we have, and we even sell excess power to the grid)
            • Communication: they manage their office network and their PABX (to which both desk phones and company-issued DECT phones are connected. And many companies run a blackberry server)
            • Transportation: During winter, on-campus roads are gritted by the company, not by the commune. For foot travel between buildings, our company offers complimentary umbrellas :-) Within buildings there are elevators. And guess who built the parking lots, and the speed bumps on the access roads, and even the access roads themselves?
            • Water: On site water distribution is organized by the company. Some even have their own wells or storage ponds (think steel mills or others who need non-trivial quantities of water for cooling purpose)
            • by musicalmicah (1532521) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @11:50AM (#34268588)

              And by the same token, smaller companies don't provide that infrastructure. This is exactly why "cloud computing" services are commonly targeted towards smaller companies. When you have three people in your office and a total budget of $500,000/year, buying and managing any infrastructure--for computing, power, communication, transportation, or water--can be daunting. Outsourcing management of these functions allows you and your employees to focus on your strengths.

              And despite what the business weeklies may pretend, a massive part of our economy flows through small businesses rather than megacorps with on-campus roads and storage ponds.

          • by syousef (465911)

            None of the things you've mentioned are anywhere near as complex, new, poorly understood, or fast changing as IT infrastructure. Power is a couple of centuries old, and you can buy backup generators and UPS, data, voice and mobile you can mitigate by going with multiple suppliers. Transportation is as old as civilisation and very much a commodity. Likewise plumbing.

          • We "clouded" one of our primary apps, and it's been hilariously error-fraught. Given our spending on networking gear (and redundant networking gear for a backup), we could have brought the whole thing in house.

            No skin off my nose (actually made my life a lot easier to get rid of the app), but I think the whole thing was a bad decision based on short-term savings.

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by definate (876684)

          Phft. That's just pre-cloud thinking, in this post-cloud world we currently live in!

          Get with the times grandpa!

          Beowful synergy!

        • by Anonymous Coward

          Wait a minute. I'm a manager, and I've been reading a lot of case studies and watching a lot of webcasts about The Cloud. Based on all of this glorious marketing literature, I, as a manager, have absolutely no reason to doubt the safety of any data put in The Cloud.

          The case studies all use words like "secure", "MD5", "RSS feeds" and "encryption" to describe the security of The Cloud. I don't know about you, but that sounds damn secure to me! Some Clouds even use SSL and HTTP. That's rock solid in my book.

          An

        • by dkf (304284)

          Yes, it's a VERY VERY bad thing if your business and it's reputation relies on said infrastructure.

          You mean, like how they utterly rely on the network (true of many businesses) and so are their own ISP?

        • by ArsonSmith (13997)

          Yes, not only should I be an expert in my core business of making and/or selling widgets, but also in IT, Power, DR, redundancy, etc...

          How about I let others be core at those things and I focus on selling my widgets, or making them or what ever.

          We outsource our building management, lunch, plumbing, furniture making, cleaning, electrical generation, water, sewer, phones, Internet connection, DNS and domain registration, ssl certificates, why not all of IT?

      • by drsmithy (35869)

        For example, we can stand up a box in a manner of minutes using RHEL kickstart, but if we wanted to add high availability this often meant configuring heartbeat IPs, swing SAN disks, /etc/hosts files for private IP ranges, etc.. HA on a cloud is almost too trivial to detail.

        A cloud doesn't magically give you HA. Unless you're using a very different definition of "HA" than I'm used to.

    • by mcvos (645701)

      I like your definition. I love working on applications, and I hate dealing with infrastructure. Yet infrastructure always seems to involved somehow. If "cloud" computing will help me to abstract infrastructure away and ignore it, then I'm all for it.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Leebert (1694) *

      ...but the overall goal is the same; the business doesn't want to worry about the infrastructure behind their app. They simply want it to work.

      Which is why internal "clouds" have always amused me to no end...

      It's understandable that you'd think that way if you don't understand how wildly organizational structures vary from organization to organization, and you're used to organizations where there is "The IT department" and customers of that IT department. In that case, yes, why on earth would The IT department build a "cloud", when the only customers of it would be themselves?

      I'll give you an example of where this is arguably a good idea: NASA. Across ten or so centers, there are hundreds of generally self-

      • by anegg (1390659)

        A big problem with cloud computing at NASA is likely to be in the security of the virtual hosts deployed from the cloud. The science projects using these hosts are likely to downplay security issues, and to fail to comply with NASA security policies related to risk assessments and security controls based on system criticality. With cloud-based "Infrastructure As A Service" virtualization multiplying the number of entities needing to be managed/secured by reducing the costs of individual servers, it will l

    • by homesnatch (1089609) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @08:37AM (#34266740)
      Everyone is confused about the "cloud" because everyone over-uses the term.

      Essentially, the "Cloud" has three main points:
      It is a set of infrastructure resources.
      It is dynamically provisioned.
      It is self-service.

      Note that it has nothing to do with whether the resources are internal or external. I run an "internal" cloud at my company.
    • "I would like to present the software solution MyCloud from the company MyCloud. Here we are. We're the princes of the Internet. Here we belong, fighting for survival. We've got to be rulers of your world. Is shall have no rival!"

    • Yea, I hate the cloud for pretty much the same sort of reason...People use it as an excuse to poorly define their hardware needs, assuming the magical cloud has infinite capacity.

      When something in cloud-land breaks, the managers get this look on their face like santa claus just died. It's priceless.

    • Which is why internal "clouds" have always amused me to no end...

      Why is it amusing? There's no difference between an internal cloud and an external cloud, except who runs it. You can even download Rackspace's software to roll your own, if you want to.

      You need: spare capacity, arbitrary scaling, on-demand provisioning, and high availability to have a cloud.

      Example: you work in a Wall Street bank as a developer. You need 5 new linux 'servers' and 6TB of storage to work out an idea. You submit a ticket to

  • by underqualified (1318035) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @04:39AM (#34265942) Homepage
    I'll start... XML
  • Sadly, the term means nothing if we're to believe MicroSoft.

    If using a remote desktop application to watch pre-recorded video is considered cloud computing, then they must also classify single molecules of water vapor as "clouds" (or single droplets clouds, if you count routers).

    Dilution of important terms like these into meaningless buzz-words is a shame.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by benjamindees (441808)

      Running a remote desktop session for a single app that could just as well have been installed locally is pretty much the definition of "cloud computing" according to Microsoft.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Belial6 (794905)
      There is nothing to dilute. The cloud is the symbol used in network diagrams to symbolize parts of the network that you have not knowledge or control of. That is why it is called "cloud". Because it is not clear.
  • by wvmarle (1070040) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @05:15AM (#34266074)

    I bet experience is the key here. Only candidates with at least 8 years experience in managing cloud computing in a virtualised environment will be considered.

    And don't forget to list your four years experience with administering Windows 7.

    • by Kokuyo (549451)

      Of course, you should bringt your Ph.D. in computer science to the table as well. Oh, and if you're older than 24, you've got a lot of splainin' to do about how you wasted all that time.

      We're a bit cynical, aren't we?

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by wvmarle (1070040)

        Very.

        And referring to all those job ads asking for more years of experience in a certain tech than that the tech is around. This has been featured several times here.

  • Finally, these wound up IT types have found a way to chill out: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x7b6hw_the-orb-little-fluffy-clouds_music [dailymotion.com]

  • buzzward savvy (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Sudheer_BV (1049540)
    If you are in the web hosting business, you have to have the word cloud on your website. Otherwise customers think you are living in the stone age. Whether you actually offer cloud services doesn't matter. But using the buzzwords matter a lot nowadays.
    • by delinear (991444)
      Surely suggesting that your hosting service is cloud based when it's not is fraud, or am I missing something?
  • by joh (27088) on Thursday November 18, 2010 @06:31AM (#34266340)

    One very simple example: Do you have ever set up Google Apps for a domain, with email, contacts, calendar, Google sites and so on? Yeah, it's all in the cloud and all you have to do is clicking on buttons and filling out forms. Now go and look at some user trying to set this up. More likely than not he will get as far as configuring the MX-records and then he will cry for help.

    All this cloud stuff seems to be so simple, but it very much isn't. And yes, this actually is nothing a real pro would like to bother with (you'll be fighting more with the UIs than anything else) but there is high demand for this, people think they can finally get away without someone who knows what he does, but they can't.

    Most of this is in no way interesting or satisfying work but just fighting half-wit user interfaces. It's sometimes insulting, actually. Instead of really setting up things and controlling things you're hanging off someone else's setup and try to beat some sense out of it. It's often frustrating, you often will have to come to the conclusion that things you would like to do just can't be done because they're not offered and you can't do anything about that. But hey, it's just work.

    Me? I'd rather setup a full server park from scratch with old PCs and Linux than fighting the "cloud", but guess what's in demand more. And yes, there's a whole army of trained monkeys out there, knowing every cloud service under the sun and with superhuman point-and-click abilities, but if you really know your job and also know about problems and limitations you can still easily make some money with this. Fun is this not, though. Fun is making things, not using things.

    • by sticks_us (150624)

      Fun is this not, though. Fun is making things, not using things.

      This. I recently started a job where management's decided to migrate as much as possible to the cloud. No in-house application is safe.

      The smell of death is in the air. All of the developer-admin-types are gradually seeing their responsibilities degrade as the cool things they love doing are being replaced by having to fight the limitations of some web UI.

      What's the endgame here? I won't be able to stay, I've worked too hard to see my skillset rust away while I fight some foggy battle with pretty but re

    • I agree generally with your sentiments, but I think your points are tangential to what the article is about. That said, here is one example [rootbsd.net] of a setup [standard "no affiliation" disclaimer goes here] that doesn't present any of the issues you describe.

    • One very simple example: Do you have ever set up Google Apps for a domain, with email, contacts, calendar, Google sites and so on?

      I have recently been trying to set up a small business using Google Apps infrastructure. I want to be able to work with people from around the world, so some sort of "cloud" infrastructure seemed like a good idea. The more I try to do, the more I'm convinced Google has no fucking idea about what people like me want from it. So, the cloudy sorts of things I want:

      Email: great! (which is why I though google might be good in the first place)
      Calenders: okay, no to-do lists
      Contacts: disaster, no syncing to the ma

  • Cloud is a buzzword. And while it might be a good idea to add it to your resume, it will be gone in a few years. However, what will increase in the next decade or so are:
    - Application services
    - Platform services
    - Virtual systems
    All these services will be on demand. But this has different meanings in the different "cloud"-types. If you outsource your mail-service than this has to be available 24/7 the only thing which is variable is the system load. So the company providing email-services to you can do some

  • Say, "LatestBuzz".

    when the employer sees this keyword in the resume, s/he should understand that whatever latest buzz is about at that time, the applicant, 'has it'.

    that could save both the employer and the applicant a lot of time - the employer, from trying to determine expertise of the applicant in an area employer has no knowledge about, and the applicant from lying about it.
  • Marketing killed IT conferences years ago.

    "We're an IT solutions provider. We help small to midsized companies leverage the same technology that larger companies have today by providing these technologies in a solutions package to scale."
    "You sell small business servers."
    "Yes."

    Now people are lapping up "cloud."

    "We're a Cloud Solutions provider. We enable small to midsized companies to leverage the power of cloud technology by moving data from dated technology into the more vast infrastructure of cloud
  • Cloud eh? (Score:2, Funny)

    by CFBMoo1 (157453)
    I'm tempted to buy a fog machine for my next job interview and put my code samples in the cloud it creates.
  • "I'm experience with administering various cloud computing techniques." = "I setup a SQL Azure account a couple months ago and I know how to use Google Docs." ?

The only thing cheaper than hardware is talk.

Working...