Today I start an interesting project. I embark on a five-week world tour, teaching about the virtues of Windows Azure to select audiences of Microsoft field sales folks and Microsoft partners.
I’ve taken a project as a trainer, as part of the Windows Azure Platform University. (WAPU). http://www.microsoft.com/windowsazure/wapu/default.aspx
I’m part of one training team, and we will visit ten cities.
Sydney, Singapore, London, Amsterdam, Munich, Warsaw, Toronto, Atlanta, and San Francisco.
This has been a great opportunity to get to know more about Windows Azure.
I keep thinking back to my college days at Arizona State where, after a few years of learning Pascal and C++, with a smattering of COBOL, one class started with the bold prediction that we all needed to learn C++ because the world was going to shift all of its programming to objects and methods. After a few weeks of thinking it was going to be another programming fad, and after diving in, it became clear to me – in my partially educated state – that we were in for a significant change. Upon leaving school, it was even more clear. All of the programming shops that I wanted to work at were already well on their way with this approach to programming. I was very glad at that time (this was 1991-2, I think), that I had persevered in the C++ class – it paid off for me.
Well, now I have been learning a lot about cloud-based systems and application design and delivery-deployment models. I continue to be in a partially-educated state, but I’m just as excited because I see a new and better model for application architecture and deployment and system design.
The effect on stand-alone applications is one thing. It will be a new model, that is certain. New types of applications will be created and delivered. That is great, but the single application, as wonderful and as full of potential as it is, isn’t the most exciting part.
The impact on Enterprise Applications will prove to illustrate the largest paradigm change, I believe.
For years, I’ve worked with enterprises in all sorts of areas and sizes to think differently about their distributed systems. I’ve taught about distributed content management systems, enterprise application integration, the power of modular and composite systems, the requirement for centralized identity management, and recent advancements in communication between cooperating identity management systems, etc. IT Dev shops are starting to figure out how to gain efficiencies by incorporating these technologies into their data centers and their networks. The cloud changes these for the better, by providing a vastly scalable support area for these technologies to sit upon and to be built upon.
Enterprises will be able to think outside of an even larger box and will be able to do amazing things over the next decade. It will be fun to watch.
Back to the trip, it was a bit harder to say good bye at the airport when my wife dropped me off. I only remember leaving for a trip this long twice before in my life, and both of those were for a year or more (college and a church mission). I’ve never left my family for this long.
I look forward to sharing my interactions with Microsoft partners on this trip. I have not been to half of the cities on this training tour, and I’m looking forward to learning more about the people and how partners are thinking of using Windows Azure in each land. I’ll be trying to post regularly here on the blog about the trip.
How does this relate to SharePoint? there will be more posts on this, I promise!