Why Android architects embrace the cloud while enterprise professionals fear and loathe it


News: Why Android architects embrace the cloud while enterprise professionals fear and loathe it

  1. Read the full article: Why Mobile Developers Embrace the Cloud. And why Enterprise Java Developers Loath it.

    Last week I got a chance to talk to some of the good Irish folk over at FeedHenry about their big announcement regarding Cloud Foundry. "Mobile application developers can now build and deploy applications on Cloud Foundry using the FeedHenry developer platform" was the big message TSS's new friend Cathal McGloin was promoting (you can read more about the FeedHenry and Cloud Foundry collaboration here).

    In our little tête-à-tête we got to talking about the ways mobile development differs from enterprise development. Timelines for development are shorter for mobile applications. Mobile applications often focus more on functionality than finesse. Organizations often push out many small mobile applications that do a few specific things well, rather than pushing out big apps that do everything very poorly as the enterprise Java community tends to do. The list of obvious differences could go on and on, but suffice to say, there is a different mentality that permeates the mobile landscape. Mobile teams don't seem to think, work, behave and produce like enterprise teams.

    So, do these differences make mobile developers more likely to embrace the cloud? Are mobile developers hip kids with moronic tribal pattern tattoos intent on revolutionizing the computing world by adopting new technologies like cloud, while enterprise developers are now just a bunch of stodgy old men with white hair hoping nothing changes before they hit retirement? Is this why mobile seems to lend itself so naturally to cloud based solutions, while enterprise developers tend to fear and loath it? 

    "If your hefty salary as a WebSphere administrator is now being threatened by the prospect of blitzkrieging the data center and moving administration off site to a PaaS provider, it’s unlikely that you’re going to swallow a poison pill by recommending a cloud based solution" - Cameron McKenzie

    I think the postulated question answers itself. But for more insight, take a gander at the article TSS put together on the topic, largely inspired by words of wisdom from the discussion I had with  Cathal McGloin, and some pertinent comments I pulled from Rod Johnson's keynote speech at last years symposium.  Give it a read. Let us know what you think.

    Why Mobile Developers Embrace the Cloud. And why Enterprise Java Developers Loath it.


    FeedHenry Brings Mobile App Development to Cloud Foundry


    Cloud Foundry


  2. Over simplification[ Go to top ]

    I've worked on large enterprise applications over the last 12 years. One of the biggest reasons why enterprise apps take so long is security and compliance. It is much easier to build an application if there's little to no security requirements. The minute the application has to selectively show data based on role and satisfy compliance requirements, the problem is 100x harder. There are legal reasons why many enterprises can't use public cloud services for specific applications. It's really only non-sensitive data that can be run in the cloud. Large corporations that have to comply with laws prefer to control their own data centers for liability reasons.

    For my own stuff, I use rackspace and EC2. There's no fear of "the cloud", that's just non-sense. It's about meeting business requirements.

  3. Hack job[ Go to top ]

    What a hack job. " Organizations often push out many small mobile applications that do a few specific things well, rather than pushing out big apps that do everything very poorly as the enterprise Java community tends to do" Really? There are bad teams and developers in every development environment, not just Java. There are as many good teams doing Java as there are on any other platform.

    Pray tell, where can I download the Android or iPhone application to analyze geophysical data, or analyze genertics information, or something as mundane as processing accounts receivable or accounts payable? Where can I download the mobile application to do 2D or 3D CAD design, or to design a chemical plant?

    There are two reasons why enterprises are not adopting the cloud:

    - Management (and not necessarily IT management) wants data in-house, not on the Internet.

    -The complexity of applications is most often quite more complicated than most mobile applications. If it were not, a solution would be purchased rather than developed.


  4. ?[ Go to top ]

    Is this post really comparing writing a tiny mobile app with developing a large enterprise application which integrates with multiple other applications and data stores and faces tons of legal requirements? Oh and the quote about horrible large java applications does not have a little bias? What a joke.
  5. Cloud vs...[ Go to top ]

    While the post seems to refer to the cloud as being public, not all clouds are nor should be. There are public, private and hybrid clouds. "Enterprise" apps can benefit from "the cloud" even if it is complicated and/or must meet security concerns.

    Additionally, "enterprise" apps and mobile apps are not mutually exclusive. Many mobile apps are a presentation layer for enterprise data.

    I think the point was poorly made by the article: Times are changing. Things that use to be important skillsets, are, for many things, becoming commodity services.  Not all applications/systems are equal. Many could benefit from a PaaS. Others will need more hand holding by DBAs and App Server admins. But not all.   This has already happened to the DBAs. DB vendors have done a good job at making the database figure out how to optimize itself. Most databases just need backup. The DBA, for those, is nothing more than a SME.  The good news is they can concentrate on the databases that really need their services. The other news is that application creators dont have to play "mother-may-I" for LOB type apps.


  6. I am not sure I understand the intent of the post other than to be inflamatory. I work with enterprise architects just about every day, and I can assure you that the ones with which I work do not exhibit this kind of attitude. In fact, many are ready to embrace cloud given that the right management and governance controls are in place. They see this as an area of opportunity for both their companies and themselves personally. Let's not forget what these enterprise architects are -- integration specialist. If you do not think those types of skills will be valuable in the cloud, then I am not sure the context in which you view this space.

    Furthermore, this post seems to want to separate mobile application development from existing enterprise applications and enterprise information systems. This could not be further from the truth. One of the top concerns for many mobile application development efforts is how to effectively and securely tap into these exsiting enterprise assets.

    Ultimately, I think it is interesting to consider why some segments have a greater affinity to the cloud than others, but I personally reject the thoughts posted here.

  7. I recently came across this list of over 40 cloud services for application developers, and a brief look at the list clearly supports the thesis raised in the article - that the cloud is primarily used by smaller developers such as those building Android applications. I can’t really see “serious? J2EE developers using something like the new-and-cool cloud IDEs, which probably lack the heavy features that they depend on. I think that just like new mobile and consumer web apps are designed to be lightweight on infrastructure and features, so is the development environment in which they grow. So I think it is actually a valid insight that cloud is for the smaller, more agile developers and less for the enterprise folks. Without getting into the emotional issue of whether Java/enterprise developers or Android architects produce higher quality code :)