The old adage that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” may help explain why virtually everyone has their own opinion of what we can expect from computing on the outskirts. For some it is the realization of autonomous vehicles; for others, it may be industrial automation or more efficient monitoring of patient health. The reality is that benefit is a concept subjective to an individual’s experience and vision, with applications and use cases still taking shape and many more are not yet on the board. drawing.

Just as today’s cloud computing environment has moved seemingly light years away from the application service provider bubble that has burst advanced computing went far beyond two decades ago first concepts of the Internet of things (IoT). What is increasingly clear is that edge computing intersects with the cloud and reveals new ways to harness the capabilities of distributed and centralized computing.

With that in mind, we sought advice from IT professionals and influencers on the impact of the edge on cloud strategies. Their responses illustrate the excitement and uncertainties surrounding the known unknowns of this new dynamic.

“Emerging technology areas, including autonomous vehicles, smart cities, smart buildings and digital health systems, all require secure processing of larger datasets for real-time applications. Edge computing is often the most reliable, cost-effective, and secure infrastructure option for real-time, localized applications that connect the digital and physical worlds, ”said Isaac Sacolick, president of StarCIO, bestseller author, and influencer of digital transformation (@nyike). “These use cases will be the first to adopt advanced computing, but like other IT trends, as infrastructure becomes cheaper, simpler to deploy and easier to manage, it will create new opportunities.” in industries such as manufacturing, government, education and energy. ”According to Sacolick, this is one reason why forward-looking IT leaders need to review their cloud strategies and assess options multicloud deployment.

“Edge is where the physical world meets the virtual world,” says Vineet Jain, CEO and co-founder of Egnyte (@CloudNotEnough). “With IT at the edge, we want to move IT close to where data is collected, used, or resides. With cloud computing, we consume more centralized services, but we still have to solve the problems of latency (speed of light), bandwidth and security.

So much data

The volume and speed of data generated at the edge is a primary factor that will impact how developers allocate resources at the edge and in the cloud.

“A major impact I see is how businesses will manage their cloud storage because it is impractical to back up the large amounts of data created by Edge directly to the cloud,” says Will Kelly, Marketing Manager technique for a container security startup (@willkelly). “State-of-the-art computing will disrupt cloud financial models, so hopefully businesses will have access to an economist or cloud solutions architect who can meet this challenge for them.”

With billions of industrial and consumer IoT devices deployed, data management is a critical consideration in any edge-to-cloud strategy. “Advanced consumer applications such as streaming multiplayer games, digital assistants and autonomous vehicle networks demand low latency data. Berkeley Varitronics Systems, Inc. (@ScottBVS).

It’s no exaggeration to think of the edge as an integral part of the rapidly evolving hybrid cloud. “Essentially, the further the edge is from an enterprise data center, the greater the demand for a cloud strategy,” says Frank Cutitta, CEO and Founder of the HealthTech Decisions Lab (@fcutitta). “The reason is the need for secure interactions between computing nodes operating at the edge, with compute and storage occurring in a wide variety of ‘orbits’ culminating in the center. “

Neil Cattermull, CEO of The Future as a Service (@NeilCattermull), notes that “edge computing is and will continue to be a major catalyst for rapid cloud expansion”. A protected edge infrastructure, he says, combined with a wider choice of public cloud and a heterogeneous awareness for other service promises, he adds: “More options, an infrastructure of more agile business and opens the doors to the emerging trend of IoT for a connected sensory world with data analytics being performed at the edge much faster than ever before.

Extensive threat environment

As with any technology, security is a major concern. “Advanced computing is a risky business,” warns Steve Morgan, founder of Cybersecurity Ventures and editor of Cybercrime Magazine (@CybersecuritySF). “It brings computing power and data storage from the cloud to endpoints – and that brings more cyber threats to endpoints. “

Rob May, author of Human Firewall (@ robmay70), confirms: “Edge computing is another factor in our digital life that increases the vectors of attack and widens the surface of threats. It is essential that we continue to focus and develop cybersecurity and resilience. “

The risks of edge computing can be tempered by hybrid architectures. “The private cloud can combine the advantages of cloud computing such as scalability, elasticity, reliability, speed, pay-as-you-go and operational model with the control, security and customization typically available only with an on-site infrastructure ”, explains cybersecurity consultant Dave Hatter (@DaveHatter).

Look beyond the hype

It’s easy to get carried away by the possibilities of the next technological change, but it’s important to stay grounded. “Edge computing is hyperbole,” says Brent Kirkpatrick, consultant and cybersecurity researcher at Intrepid Net Computing (@DrBKirkpatrick). “The term is used to resell the idea that proper computing resources located near where they’re needed are in fact the only solution we’ve ever sold.”

Yet it is undeniable that we are on the cusp of a great potential breakthrough. “One of the cool things we’re seeing with edge computing is enabling real-time performance, AI, machine learning, and IoT,” says Gene De Libero, director of strategy at GeekHive@GeneDeLibero). “Edge services and associated data, filtered at the source, not only promote integration with other business applications and data, but also provide enhanced security. This helps companies develop a more strategic view of the role of the cloud.

In addition, adds FinTech innovator Enrico Molinari (@enricolinari), “The edge offers us a distributed and decentralized IT architecture for data management and [to] avoid latency issues that negatively impact application performance, while reducing the amount of data to be centrally processed.

In addition, it is good for the planet, according to Molinari: “The use of edge computing joined to the cloud, as a decentralized infrastructure, is a sustainable choice because it does not link the consumption of electricity to the need for cooling servers and storage, but at the same time allows the use of real-time and data-intensive applications.

After all, not upsetting Mother Nature is as good a strategy as any.

Red Hat sees the edge differently. See how:

Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.

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