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  • 1. SaaSy API (Openness in the Cloud) or Approaches to Exploiting the Potential of Cloud Computing and APIs Brian Kelly UKOLN University of Bath Bath, UK UKOLN is supported by: This work is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 licence (but note caveat) Acceptable Use Policy Recording of this talk, taking photos, discussing the content using email, instant messaging, blogs, SMS, etc. is permitted providing distractions to others is minimised. Resources bookmarked using ' mw2009-kelly-workshop ' tag Email: [email_address] Twitter: Blog:
  • 2. About The Session
    • Abstract
    • “ What are the potential benefits which Open APIs and Software as a Service (SaaS) seek to provide? What about the associated risks in moving from an environment in which software is installed and managed either locally or by a hosting agency with formal contractual agreements to a environment in which there may be no formal agreements, the services may be hosted in different countries and governed by different legal frameworks? And at a time of global economic uncertainties, is it sensible to be seeking to make use of Open APIs and SaaS? …”
    • Workshop will “ explore strategies for exploiting the benefits of and managing the risks associated with these services ”.
  • 3. About Me
    • Brian Kelly:
      • UK Web Focus: a national Web advisory post
      • Based at UKOLN, a national centre of expertise in digital information management
      • Located at the University of Bath
      • Funded by JISC and the MLA
      • Involved in Web since Jan 1993
      • Currently advising on best practices for Web 2.0 & the Social Web
      • Not a software developer!
      • Colleague of Paul Walk, UKOLN Technical Manager & author of paper for workshop (who is a software developer)
  • 4. About The Mini-Workshop
    • Introduction
      • About me, about you, about the session
      • What are we talking about (primer)?
    • Benefits
      • Why are we interested?
    • Risks
      • Why should we be concerned?
    • Strategies
      • What do we do next?
  • 5. About You
    • Please:
      • Introduce yourself, giving your name, your organisation & what you do
      • Describe what you hope to gain from this session
  • 6. The Hype
  • 7. Take-up Of New Technologies
    • The Gartner curve
    Developers Rising expectations Trough of despair Service plateau Enterprise software Large budgets … Early adopters Barriers
    • Chasm
    • Failure to go beyond developers & early adopters (cf Gopher)
    • Need for:
      • Advocacy
      • Listening to users
      • Addressing concerns
      • Deployment strategies
    This workshop looks at approaches for avoiding the chasm & reshaping the curve
  • 8. What Do We Mean By “The Cloud”?
    • Cloud computing is Internet ("cloud") based development and use of computer technology ("computing").
    • It is a style of computing in which dynamically scalable and often virtualised resources are provided as a service over the Internet.
    • Users need not have knowledge of, expertise in, or control over the technology infrastructure "in the cloud" that supports them.
    • From Wikipedia
  • 9. What Is Cloud Computing?
    • “.. a broad array of
    • web-based services aimed at
    • allowing users to obtain a wide range of functional capabilities
    • on a ‘pay-as-you-go’ basis
    • that previously required tremendous hardware/software investments
    • and professional skills to acquire.”
    Via Irving Wladawsky-Berger
  • 10. Example: Amazon
    • Amazon Web Services:
      • CPU: 1.0Ghz x86 @ $0.11 /hour
      • Blob Storage @ $0.12 /GB month
      • External Data Transfer @ $0.10 /GB
    • Used, for example, by
  • 11. What About SaaS, PaaS, IaaS, etc?
    • “ The concept incorporates infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS) as well as Web 2.0 and other recent (ca. 2007–2009) technology trends which have the common theme of reliance on the Internet for satisfying the computing needs of the users.”
    Introduction Wikipedia “ Everything as a service ( EaaS , XaaS , *aaS ) is a concept of being able to call up re-usable, fine-grained software components across a network” Wikipedia “ I think there is a world market for maybe five computers ” Thomas Watson mis-quote Wikipedia
  • 12. Definitions
    • SaaS: Model of software deployment where provider licenses an application to customers for use as a service on demand. SaaS software vendors may host application on their own web servers or download the application to consumer’s device.
    • PaaS: Delivery of a computing platform and solution stack as a service. It facilitates deployment of applications without the cost and complexity of buying and managing the underlying hardware and software layers.
    • IaaS: Delivery of computer infrastructure (typically a platform virtualization environment) as a service … an evolution of Web hosting.
  • 13. Peter Laird’s  ‘ Cloud Map’
  • 14. Open APIs
    • “ Open API (often referred to as OpenAPI) is a word used to describe sets of technologies that enable websites to interact with each other by using SOAP, Javascript and other web technologies.”
    Introduction Wikipedia Programmeable Web
  • 15. What’s Missing?
    • What is missing from this introduction to the Cloud, SaaS, Open APIs?
    Introduction Q
  • 16. Why The Interest?
    • Small group exercise
      • What benefits can use of ‘the cloud’ provide?
      • Why should museums publish open APIs for their services?
      • Why should museums consume open APIs provided by others?
    • Include both tangible examples & possibilities
    Benefits E
  • 17. Case Studies
    • Case studies illustrating benefits of the Cloud and open APIs (from Sebastian Chan, Powerhouse Museum).
    Benefits D
  • 18. The Challenges Challenges: Web 2.0 (and Clouds, APIs, …?) Resources Expertise Time Money Understanding Legal Issues IT Services Colleagues Management Accessibility Sustainability Reliability Cultural issues Technical Issues Interoperability Privacy, DPA, FOI, .. Council Barriers
  • 19. What About The Barriers?
    • Small group exercise
      • What problems might be envisaged in making use of ‘ cloud services ’?
      • What are the dangers in museums publishing open APIs for their services?
      • What are the dangers in museums consuming open APIs provided by others?
      • What approaches can be taken to addressing such problems and minimising the dangers?
    Barriers E
  • 20. What Do We Mean By ‘Risk’?
    • “ Risk is a concept that denotes the precise probability of specific eventualities”
    • When should we take risks?
      • Never
      • If the probability is low
      • If the dangers are insignificant
      • If the context if appropriate
    • But what if human life is at risk:
      • In the army
      • Driving a car
      • Travelling on the train
    • We can’t ignore the context , the potential benefits and the costs
  • 21. Core vs Chore
    • What type of services can you provide via the cloud?
      • Chore services : Services you have to provide even though they aren’t part of your organisation’s key mission (e.g. email, payroll, …). Keep the core services that you care about in-house.
      • Core services : Services key to organisation’s mission. Global organisations (Google, Amazon, etc.) are better placed to provide such services, especially if you have limited technical expertise, resources, … Keep the chore services in-house, allowing you to manage internal IT services.
    Barriers From David Harrison, (Cardiff Uni.) and developed by Paul Walk What’s the most appropriate context for museum services?
  • 22. Sustainability Concerns
    • What happens if SaaS services:
      • Are unreliable?
      • Change their terms and conditions (e.g start charging)?
      • Become bankrupt
    • Things to remember:
      • Services may be unreliable e.g. Twitter
      • Market pressure is leading to changes to T&C – & paid-for services may become free (e.g. Friends Reunited)
      • Banks may go bankrupt too – but we still use them
      • Need for risk assessment and risk management
  • 23. Interoperability Issues
    • What happens if SaaS services host your data and:
      • You can’t get the data back out?
      • You only get the unstructured or poor quality data back out?
      • You can’t get the comments, annotations, tags out?
    • There’s a need to:
      • Ensure data export capabilities or
      • Upload data from an alternative managed sources
      • Understand limitations of data export / import and make plans around limitations
  • 24. Deployment Strategies
    • What strategies do we need for exploiting the benefits of Cloud services and open APIs whilst minimising the risks?
    • Possible areas:
      • Educating senior managers / policy makers
      • Identifying appropriate areas
      • Carrying out risk assessment
      • Testing risk management strategies
    • What else?
  • 25. Deployment Strategies Deployment Strategies Developers Senior Managers Users Colleagues Strategies Funders Other Stakeholders
  • 26. Deployment Strategies
    • Interested in exploiting the Cloud and Open APIs in your organisation?
    • Worried about corporate inertia, power struggles, etc?
    • There’s a need for a deployment strategy:
      • Addressing business needs
      • Low-hanging fruits
      • Encouraging the enthusiasts
      • Gain experience of the browser tools – and see what you’re missing!
      • Staff training & development
      • Risk and opportunity management strategy
  • 27. Risk Management
    • JISC infoNet Risk Management infoKit:
      • “ In education, as in any other environment, you can’t decide not to take risks: that simply isn’t an option in today’s world. All of us take risks and it’s a question of which risks we take ”
    • Examples of people who are likely to be adverse stakeholders:
      • People who fear loss of their jobs
      • People who will require re-training
      • People who may be moved to a different department / team
      • People .. required to commit resources to the project
      • People who fear loss of control over a function or resources
      • People who will have to do their job in a different way
      • People who will have to carry out new or additional functions
      • People who will have to use a new technology
  • 28. IWMW 2006 & Risk Management
    • IWMW 2006 has taken a risk management approach to its evaluation of Web 2.0 technologies:
      • Agreements : e.g. in the case of the Chatbot.
      • Use of well-established services : Google & are well-established and have financial security.
      • Notification : warnings that services could be lost.
      • Engagement : with the user community: users actively engage in the evaluation of the services.
      • Provision of alternative services: multiple OMPL tools.
      • Use in non-mission critical areas: not for bookings!
      • Long term experiences of services: usage stats
      • Availability of alternative sources of data : e.g. standard Web server log files.
      • Data export and aggregation: RSS feeds, aggregated in Suprglu, OPML viewers, etc.
  • 29. Critical Friends
    • JISC U&I programme is encouraging establishment of “Critical Friends”
    See <> Paul Walk (UKOLN) was described as a ‘critical friend’ of JISC See < 02/10/five-minute-interview-paul-walk/> But is such open debate encouraged in other sectors? See < A2=ind0903&L=MCG&T=0&F=&S=&P=19929>
  • 30. Towards a Framework
    • “ Time To Stop Doing and Start Thinking: A Framework For Exploiting Web 2.0 Services ”, Museums & the Web 2009 conference
    Biases Subjective factors Intended Purpose Benefits (various stakeholders Risks (various stakeholders Missed Opps. (various stakeholders Costs (various stakeholders
    • Sharing experiences
    • Learning from successes & failures
    • Tackling biases
    • Critical friends
    • Application to existing services
    • Application to in-house development
  • 31. Using The Framework
    • Use of approach in two scenarios: use of Twitter & Facebook
    Note personal biases! Intended Purpose Benefits (various stakeholders Risks (various stakeholders Missed Opps. (various stakeholders Costs (various stakeholders Community support Rapid feedback Justify ROI Org. brand Community- building Low? Twitter for individuals Organisational Fb Page Marketing events,… Large audiences Ownership, privacy, lock-in Marketing opportunity Low?
    • Critical friends:
      • Paul Walk / Brian Kelly blog posts)
      • MCG discussions
    • Learning
      • UKOLN cultural heritage guest blog post
      • Conferences
      • Papers
  • 32. Use The Framework Yourself
    • Feel free to you apply framework to:
      • Services you’re planning
      • Existing services
      • Large scale initiatives (e.g. Creative Spaces)
    What is the purpose? Who are the users? What are the benefits? To whom? What are the risks? To whom? What are the risks of doing nothing? What are the costs – to developers, to users,… Remember the biases! Is the service really intended to sustain the service provider? Remember the need for the critical friend and the need for sharing? Intended Purpose Benefits (various stakeholders Risks (various stakeholders Missed Opps. (various stakeholders Costs (various stakeholders
  • 33. Conclusions