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Tuesday, 2 June 2015

As a Service

"The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist" -  One of the famous quote from the movie "The Usual Suspects".  I am confident the entire software industry is familiar with IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, BaaS...  Is this concept of "As a Service", entirely new or has it been existing for a quite a while.

After attempting to teach my kids about anything, i have started to believe that things are simple.  If you think about it they are simple.  Few years back, my older one, out of the blue, asked me  "Dad, what do you do in Office".  Ha.  as a proud father of a curious son, "Why do you ask?".  "No, every time i call you, you say you are in meeting.  I was wondering, do they pay you for sitting in meetings".  oops.  Simple conclusion for him.  I was then forced to explain him about what i do.  "You see, I work in Data Management and we are implementing a cloud framework" and wanting to prove that his dad is actually smart (?), started talking about cloud, Infrastructure as a Service....  All the cloud he knew was the one that gives you the rain.  He looked extremely puzzled and probably started feeling "Why did i even bother what he does in office".  I hear my wife's voice from her home office.  "Why don't you KISS?"  She meant, "Why don't you KEEP IT SIMPLE, STUPID?".  probably the nicest way she had addressed me the entire year.  Here is an attempt to simplify "As a Service"

A very long time ago, you could one use the things you own.  Simply put, you will have to buy.  This changed, don't know how long ago, with the concept of rent or lease.  For instance, renting cars started way back in 1904.  Software industry also went through similar phase like any other industry.  If you have to use Infrastructure (servers), Software.... you will have to buy them and own them.  Now with "As a Service", we can rent them.  In reality we are the laggers to a concept that has been prevalent for centuries in every other industry.  

Let us dig a little deeper on the fundamental principles of "as a Service".  Say you go in to restaurant (another service), the chronological order of things that happen are as follows

Transparency : Clear understanding on options, ingredients, cost ....
Personalization :  Like 'Shaken not Stirred".  Always there is a need to add another layer of cheese, amount of spice. 
Decide :  Once comfortable, you decide and place your order

While the food is getting prepared in the kitchen, you trust there is 
Governed :  A master chef who manages the overall process
Quality :  the ingredients, the environment is quality controlled

when the food is served
Timely :  you did not have to wait for long
Responsive : You expect the waiter/waitress to check on you / answer questions
Scalable :  You like to see more offerings in food variety, proximity of the place…..


These are the same principles that will apply for "as a Service" within our industry.  It is advisable to ensure these principles are taken in to account for any new IaaS, PaaS, SaaS offering that is required by your organization.

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