Getting Back into the Library Business: Moving Library IT to the Cloud Marc Davis
Cowles Library Drake University
Des Moines, Iowa "Libraries are in a unique position to experiment with cloud computing given their service-oriented mission and need to find appropriate solutions using limited resources." "Using Cloud Services for Library IT Infrastructure"
2010-03-22 Uniquely Positioned? Familiarity with hosted solutions
Expertise with contracts > SLAs
Rich, highly competitive (library-centric) SAAS environment (lots of tools proprietary & OSS )
Vendors heavily committing to cloud (OCLC)
Integrative rather than comprehensive approach to service configuration
Community of practice An Assumption & A Definition The cloud (commodity computing) is inevitable to some extent for all of our organizations.
The economics of server infrastructure (the ROI on unused server capacity housed on aging infrastructure) are ultimately too inefficient to be sustained (even for organizations with a high tolerance for inefficiency)
extremely large-scale, commodity-computer data centers decrease the cost of electricity, network bandwidth, operations, software, and hardware by a factor of 5 to 7.
" . . . even if Amazon’s pay- as-you-go pricing was more expensive than buying and depreciating a comparable server over the same period, we argue that the cost is outweighed by the extremely important cloud computing economic benefits of elasticity and transference of risk, especially the risks of overprovisioning (underutilization) and underprovisioning (saturation)." "A View of Cloud Computing"
Armbrust, M., Fox, A., et. al.
Communications of the ACM
April 1, 2010 "...cloud computing means using Web services for our computing needs which could include using software applications, storing data, accessing computing power, or using a platform to build applications." "Library Cloud Atlas: A Guide to Cloud Computing and Storage"
09/10/2009 SAAS PAAS IAAS use an application via a hosted service
no access to the underlying hardware infrastructure
not responsible for managing the underlying software
Utilizing a provided server environment but retaining responsibility for configuration and operation a development environment to support building, testing, and deploying (Web-based) applications.
Arrangements with central IT (e.g., municipal network, campus network) providing server hosting & other core services to the library (IAAS-like)
Arrangements for leased cloud services (e.g. Amazon EC2) (IAAS)
Arrangements utilizing free internet services (e.g., Meebo) particularly in the context of eliminating existing in-house IT hardware/services (SAAS-like)
Arrangements with [outside] vendors related to specific services (e.g., Ebsco), many of which are unique to libraries (SAAS) Characteristics of a Library Cloud Migration
move IT infrastructure out of the building/org unit
transfering [some measure of] responsibility for server configuration, maintenance and operations to vendors or others (eg, central IT)
SAAS generally receives more emphasis than IAAS
shaped by the local environment (cost, needs, priorities, organizational culture, goals)
shaped by availability of IT support 2009 2010 http://krash.deviantart.com/art/Unique-23149690 Libraries
exist in a service-rich environment which is conducive to cloud migration
they are not uniquely positioned to migrate
local needs, priorities, organizational culture, availability of IT support, risk-aversion, and trust are far more significant in determining readiness & capability Impact (Benefits) of Cloud Migration The Hype The Promise OTOH Cost-effectiveness
The ability to handle large amounts of data "On the Clouds: A New Way of Computing"
Information Technology & Libraries
June 1, 2010 Cost savings
Flexibility & innovation
Required IT skills
*Cloud OPAC and Cloud ILS
*A "library cloud"
"What is Cloud Computing and How will it Affect Libraries?" [Blog post]
6 March 2010 Cost Effectiveness August 2010:
The servers have left the building. Rapid service deployment
without infrastructure costs
without new sysadmin duties
at an appropriate level of provisioning
focus on service rather than hardware, os, etc. Service effectiveness
closing the feature gap
fewer organizational constraints
budgeting & planning for innovation
developing partnerships that may become collaborations "Cloud computing increases the pressure on IT professionals to become well-rounded employees with highly-developed managerial skills . . . "
greater autonomy for service staff
boundary blurring Cloud costs tend to be more
Aligned with actual service usage (IAAS) Above the bottom line
capacity Flexibility Innovation IT Skills Partly Cloudy: 2007-2011 Hosted Services (SAAS) ILLiad - OCLC
Electronic Reserves - Sirsi/Docutek
DSpace - Longsight, Inc.
ContentDM - OCLC
Wiki - Wikispaces
LibGuides & LibAnswers - Springshare
Discovery - Ebsco EDS
Web Help Desk - MacsDesign Studio, Inc.
drakelibrary.info - GoDaddy "Free" Services (SAAS-Like) Meebo
Social networks Local Data Center (IAAS-Like) ILS (hardware) **
Web server (virtualized) **
Proxy Server (virtualized)
Digital Projects File Share (5 TB) Legacy File Server (2011 - Live@Edu)
Print Server (2011 - campus-wide system) Transitioning Core Services Anti-Virus (completed)
Windows Update / Patch Management
Provisioning / Inventory (2011) 2011- 2013 Future Web services (2011-12) **
ILS / Discovery (2012-2013) **
. . .
Library Cloud Extinct Linux Server Backup
SQL Server Conclusions (of a Sort) Cloud Migration * shaped by local conditions
* rich cloud environment for libraries
* clear advantages
support for innovation
* focus shifts to the service itself rather than support for the service * strategic focus for Library IT
* closing the feature gap
* management skills are more desirable
* integrative technical skills are more desirable Impacts After you've done a thing the same way for two years, look it over carefully. After five years, look at it with suspicion. And after ten years, throw it away and start all over.
Alfred Edward Perlman,
New York Times
3 July 1958See the full transcript