Council Post: Can Supercloud benefit Data Science Industry

The roundtable conference was moderated by Satyajit Nair, Director of Innovations and Architecture at Laerdal along with panellists Anees Merchant, EVP – Global growth and client success at Course5i; Suresh Chintada, CTO at Subex; Ankush Sabharwal, Founder and CEO at Corover and Biswajit Biswas, Chief Data Scientist at Tata Elxsi with the agenda of understanding how supercloud can benefit DS/AI & Analytics.
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The next version of cloud innovation is here. Automation is non-negotiable in today’s world. Data received from the cloud cannot be manipulated, operated or controlled as customers want an effortless experience. Companies today want to evolve because they no longer want to be dependent on a single provider and benefit from innovative solutions that have higher availability. Adopters of Multi-cloud face obstacles like inconsistency, need for multiple teams for each cloud and repeated implementation of functionality for each cloud. Keeping in mind how advanced the native cloud services are and the complexities they entail, we are in need of an architecture that helps businesses take advantage of the cloud services they need and simultaneously deliver multi-cloud services that provide stability, simplify the environment and reduce cost.

Howie Xu, VP of ML/AI at Zscaler Inc., said that Supercloud eliminates the complexities that are involved, and AI models will follow the data. Thus without supercloud, it is very hard to do AI machine learning. The interest in supercloud ability to connect across clouds and being able to operate in a hybrid environment makes life easier for users and developers. Companies use heterogeneous sources making it difficult to understand and analyse data, and so with this new term what does the future of data science and analytics look like?

The roundtable conference was moderated by Satyajit Nair, Director of Innovations and Architecture at Laerdal along with panellists Anees Merchant, EVP – Global growth and client success at Course5i; Suresh Chintada, CTO at Subex; Ankush Sabharwal, Founder and CEO at Corover and Biswajit Biswas, Chief Data Scientist at Tata Elxsi with the agenda of understanding how supercloud can benefit DS/AI & Analytics.

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Supercloud as “The new term”

The whole idea is to give a user a perspective of them using a single interface, as data can reside anywhere. So, from the user point of view, it is a single cloud, or is a super cloud. However, underneath, you have multiple technologies, multiple security, network topologies being addressed. So, these things put together, we design a layer of abstractions, which puts these complexities of implementation in a more managed form, so that the end user gets a very seamless interface and experience.

—Biswajit Biswas, Chief data Scientist at Tata Elxsi

‘Super cloud’ seems to be very moniker. If I were to use the word of cross cloud infrastructure, to really provide you an ability to create applications that can serve customers across, markets, regions, or otherwise it is, app migration, perhaps a service across the cloud providers. It also helps you to use this abstraction layer to provide interfaces, tools, technologies to start again, do the same thing as what we used to do in the cloud and allocate, migrate and terminate the sources in a fashion that is more agnostic of the underlying infrastructure.

 —Suresh Chintada, CTO at Subex

Evolution of Supercloud

90% people would not be using just one cloud platform. Everyone is acknowledging whether, it is an IT company or a cloud provider, a company would not just get stuck with just one cloud provider. You think about a software architecture or enterprise architecture we do see the applications are spread across various cloud platforms practically.

Ankush Sabharwal, Founder and CEO at CoRover

Multi cloud multi environment is already there. Companies have always been in the mind-set that there is data sitting outside, which is your propriety. With cloud infrastructures like the GCP, Azure, AWS has come in, organisations have realised a big mistake they had done in the past of getting too confined to one provider from an infrastructure perspective. And that’s why this rise of multi cloud multi environment will continue to exist. It’s just going to increase so much that I think it’s going to bring in other problems.

 —Anees Merchant, EVP – Global growth and client success at Course5i

Security, an obstacle for supercloud

To alleviate some of these data security problems, there is a need for a different set of query mechanisms like the queries which will fetch results not in bulk, but in a chance which is totally encrypted across the network security and compute security. All these three layers of security need to be addressed. The IAM policies have to be revamped.

 — Biswajit Biswas, Chief data Scientist at Tata Elxsi

Supercloud encompassing other benefits

Whether superclouds should be existing and considered on prem, those on prem infrastructures continue to exist. And now they are interacting with the cloud. SuperCloud is just another buzzword. It’s been there, it continues to be there. Mature organisations will define their own policies, what kind of data exists, what kind of processes exist. And based on that what security governance and processes need to be defined at these multi layered areas.

 — Anees Merchant, EVP – Global growth and client success at Course5i

Benefits with supercloud

The promise of super cloud is, if it provides you a trade-off to make it simpler to work across this cloud without having to worry about which cloud I’m working with at this point hence which tool or methodology or management system I need to use. It’s definitely an abstraction that I would want to look forward to.

  — Suresh Chintada, CTO at Subex

Certain platforms whether you look at the sales tech, operations tech, HR tech, or the key organisation dimensions, these platforms are defaulted or built on certain of these cloud ecosystems. And then there are these AI/ML platforms, which are very good or built around a specific cloud. Now trying to get that into some other environment, there are certain latencies and issues which you will see from a data and data processing aspect. Second aspect is data sovereignty, which is becoming a big thing where we used to manage these on prem infrastructures, because we had to manage the data within those environments. So, cloud providers who don’t have those infrastructures to manage and scale and manage the requirement of that nation, unfortunately, are giving rise to the super cloud, and they have that requirement.

Anees Merchant, EVP – Global growth and client success at Course5i

Superpass for supercloud?

Sometimes GPUs or any other cloud components are cheaper in cloud-1, not in cloud-2. And, we should also be able to create VMs in Cloud-3 may be because the third part application is deployed there or the static IPs there have been white-listed for the access to the third party applications. Moreover, we may need to use the Cloud-4, for the heavy outbound resource usage, which may have less data egress cost.

So, everything should be happening so seamlessly using SuperPass, which should also enable application migration as a service across different availability zones or cloud providers. We should be able to allocate, migrate, and terminate resources such as virtual machines and storage and presents a homogeneous network to tie these resources together.

 — Ankush Sabharwal, Founder and CEO of CoRover

Supercloud for which industry?

What Cloud essentially gave us is speed to innovation. And what I would say is any industry that is really innovating in the future, is healthcare, banking, FinTech would definitely benefit from a super cloud, because I’m assuming that super cloud will only accelerate their innovation.

 —Suresh Chintada, CTO at Subex

Super-Cost

I think the super cloud will actually solve this runaway cost problem and take the best usage of where the cost benefit is for that day. So, an AI/ML can come and do a great job here. So, they will constantly analyse and perform all those analyses to find out where the cost is running, where the cost is low, which instances today’s going lower, which regions are having less. So, there is some kind of bidding process that can be done, which we of course, will enable, so that will allocate resources or towards the least cost areas and the customer has a greater flexibility to kind of pick and choose the areas which part they should run in their cost areas.

Biswajit Biswas, Chief data Scientist at Tata Elxsi

Having one Supercloud is better than four separate cloud services that have the same vendor. Though it is the future, it may not be the preferred outcome for customers. It is a powerful term that pushes debates, thoughts and simultaneously solves problems public cloud vendors are not addressing directly. Yet Supercloud lacks a proper definition. Whether Supercloud will become the next big thing or not is a test of time. But the actual test will be when companies can identify themselves as users of supercloud when it reaches the value and specificity that they need to position them to customers. As Paul Maritz, CEO of VMware said, “Cloud is about how you do computing, not where you do computing.”

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