Keith Collins was up next to talk about Cloud. This is an area where I have done some research before – check out the results from our Predictive Analytics in the Cloud research. Keith presented the NIST definition of cloud with its 5 characteristics – one demand, broad network access, measured service (subscription), resource pooling and rapid elasticity. SaaS, PaaS and IaaS models across private, public, hybrid and community clouds. SAS is focusing on SaaS and PaaS across private, public and hybrid clouds.
SAS wants to use cloud to do three things, each of which has an implication for their technology:
- Enable their customers by delivering SAS in the cloud
This means SAS vApps – packaged up visual components, classes, web service capabilities, compute tier etc all packaged up as a virtual application ready for cloud use.
- Simplify things for their customers by allowing access and management of SAS applications in the cloud
App Cental and the Cloud Engine for managing applications in the cloud
- Innovate by allow applications to be built and distributed in the cloud,helping customers “keep up” as SAS develops new functions
App Works and Public Interfaces
Keith then showed what App Central /App Works is going to look like. A web based interface allows the spinning up of a SAS application like Visual Analytics at a defined scale. Any running application can be updated to a new build, get more resources assigned to it and so on. This builds on the rPath acquisition they made (rPath was focused on automating the assembly, provisioning and updating of diverse operating systems and middleware platforms and application stacks throughout enterprises). The environment allows web application assets to be combined and SAS tools /programs used to build new applications that can be rapidly deployed and managed in the cloud.
All this is coming with SAS 9.4 in mid-second half 2013.