- Developers Hold the Keys to the Kingdom
- How Cloud Benefits Enterprise Developers
- General Strengths for Development
- Developer-Friendly Cloud
Developers Hold the Keys to the Kingdom
Since innovation is so fundamental to success in today’s rapidly evolving economy, developers have an incredibly important role, creating the digital roadways to be traversed by consumers, businesses, and the public sector.
Developers may seem to be a tiny population, but there are actually 18.5 million people who are employed in development, wrote Megan Swanson in Wired. “In a sign of the growing recognition of the value of developers,” she said, “President Obama recently became the first sitting president to write a line of computer code, as part of the Hour of Code Campaign during Computer Education Week.”
One major role in technology that makes coders’ lives easier is the meteoric rise of cloud computing. The many benefits of cloud for developers are generally explored below. First though, let’s look at the use of cloud specifically by enterprise developers.
How Cloud Benefits Enterprise Developers
In recent years, cloud computing became more and more prevalent throughout the business world but was more common in some segments than others. Cloud hosting was widely used by startups and by consumer-focused websites, but many enterprises were hesitating about transitioning to the cloud into 2014.
In 2014, Gigaom released its survey of more than 400 IT executives in development roles at enterprises. The IT participants were asked several questions about software development at their organizations, especially related to the cloud.
The results of the poll suggests that enterprises that were active with cloud had lower time-to-market and were more productive. It makes sense that cloud would have tangible benefits for enterprises. The flexibility of setting up cloud infrastructure and easily adapting to larger volumes of traffic is driving enterprises to embrace a technology favored by startups for its speed and agility.
One finding of the Gigaom report was that waiting was costing enterprises a lot of money. According to the survey, waiting for infrastructure to be established usually took up a quarter of the time-to-market for a new application or environment.
“With the majority of projects being longer than six months,” said Ryan Shriver in Gigaom, “reducing time to market by developing in the cloud could shave weeks off project schedules while also saving hundreds of thousands of dollars.”
This huge cash savings is assuming that cloud computing does save people time. The majority of the enterprise developers surveyed (53%) said that cloud was, in fact, resulting in better time-to-market and more substantial output. That majority of enterprise users said that they were completing projects three weeks faster than the typical timeframe (as established by an average of all developers polled).
In June 2014, when the Gigaom report was released, just one in five enterprises (21%) had adopted cloud for development – despite the effectiveness, as described above. Enterprise use of the cloud got a huge boost late last year, though, when General Electric revealed that it was using the cloud for nine out of every ten new applications.
When asked how much of computing at General Electric was performed through a public cloud, IT head Chris Drumgoole said the enterprise was currently making a huge push toward cloud adoption organization-wide.
“It’s multiple millions of dollars in terms of annual spend,” Drumgoole told Eric Knorr of InfoWorld. “If you look at our new apps, north of 90 percent of what we deployed this year has gone into a public cloud environment.”
General Strengths for Development
The reason that General Electric is turning to the cloud for its application needs is similar to the reasons many other organizations have done the same.
Cloud infrastructures allow developers immediate access to IT resources with a credit card.
Unlike physical computing models, the cloud is without limitation essentially, so developers can immediately get more resources at a moment’s notice to perform testing or work with huge datasets on-the-fly.
Things didn’t use to be nearly so easy. In the legacy architecture world, the difficulty of getting programs to work with individual networks and servers created many development headaches. The task of figuring out each individual type of hardware and creating code that would work well for all elements of the infrastructure took time away from developers that could have been used to create better functionality. Now, that time is available.
Another major trend that is typical with cloud computing environments as well is the use of open software, said Swanson. “Sharing the code … and contributing to debugging and troubleshooting means that individual developers can spend more effort on applications,” she explained. “This gives developers flexibility if they decide they want to change from one hosting company to another.”
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