Archive for February, 2008

Google’s Cloud and Open Computing

According to a December 24, 2007 Business Week article by Stephen Baker, Google has embarked on a potentially transformative experiment: cloud computing for everyone. Is the Internet on the verge of becoming the computer itself, not only storing and presenting data but providing us with free and open processing power and the tools to use it?

The idea was the brain child of 27-year-old computer scientist–Baker calls him a “software engineer”–Christophe Bisciglia, a University of Washington CS grad who got permission from Google CEO Eric Schmidt to start a “Google 101″ course at his alma mater. Bisciglia wanted to give students an idea of how different computing is when the problem is to access massive amounts of data. Being unable to hook students up to Google’s cloud–a massive collection (millions) of servers scattered on “server farms” throughout the world, Bisciglia got Google to buy a cluster of 40 computers for the UW course. The idea caught on rapidly and soon other schools were interested and Google was eager to expand the initiative. IBM Chairman Samual J. Palmisano heard about the project on a visit to Google and signed on. Over the next few months, working with his Dennis Quan, his counterpart at IBM, Bisciglia put together joint Goggle-IBM cloud comprised of IBM’s open source business applications and Google’s servers.

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Ubuntu Developer Week

I just spotted this on Jono Bacon’s blog. (Jono is community manager of Ubuntu, the free, linux-based operating system for laptops and desktops.) Ubuntu will be having a Developer Week running from February 18-22 over IRC. On Wednesday at 18:00 UTC (same as GMT) there is a session on how to get started as a contributor. I think that would be 1:00 PM Hartford time.

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