Steve Ballmer: Cloud Momentum in India

Remarks by Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft
Delhi, India
May 27, 2010

MODERATOR: So, a very good afternoon to all of you, ladies and gentlemen here. First of all, a big thank-you from all of us to make sure that you’re here on this very hot day out there in Delhi. And clearly this year, 2010, has been sort of a very momentous year for us, if you look at the plethora of products, Windows 7, Windows Azure, SQL Azure, BPOS, Online Services, Office 2010, and you have seen some terrific adoption, and momentum in the partner ecosystem out there. But today, we are going to spend time where we’ll have ecosystem partners talk about the great momentum on Windows Azure, which is the bedrock of our cloud computing story, and we’ll also have Steve here who will share with us the global perspective, as well as Microsoft’s vision on the cloud.

But, first, I would like to invite Chairman and Corporate Vice President Ravi onstage to share the India perspective, and the cloud momentum that we have locally.

So, Ravi, please begin.

RAVI VENKATESAN: Good afternoon. Let me add my own personal welcome to Srikanth, and in particular I would like to welcome our partners who are here today: India Ministry of Science, CDC, Cognizant and NIIT.

Now, all of you have probably heard about this thing called cloud computing, which is one of the most important phenomena sweeping through the technology industry today, but it fundamentally just refers to the delivery of computing resources, application software over the Internet as a utility, and typically combined with a pay-as-you-go, or pay-as-you-use business model.

Now, cloud computing is important because it holds tremendous promise for customers and users. It promises to bring down costs. It promises to give you the ability to scale dynamically. It promises to remove away a lot of the complexity that customers have running and managing their IT systems. And so, it’s incredibly important.

Microsoft has been, in one way, shape, or form, and I’m sure Steve will talk about it, at the leading edge of cloud computing for most of the last 15 years. In fact, Steve very often describes our strategy as a company as three screens and the cloud, which is fundamentally enabling rich, compelling experiences across small screens like the mobile, midsize screens like PCs, and large screens, which can range from anywhere from a TV screen to, in fact, a whole room, through a combination of software that lives on the device, as well as software that’s delivered over the cloud.

Now, many of you would have seen in the last few months, when you open a magazine cover, very often there’s a funny looking cloud on the back cover, and it says we are all in. And you will see the same thing as you exit airports, whether it’s Delhi, or Mumbai, or any of these places, big holdings. And, essentially, what we’re saying to Indians everywhere is, every one of our high-volume products, Windows, Office, Windows Server, SQL, is now cloud-enabled. And so, we’re ready and we’re leading. And, Steve is going to talk in a minute about how we are committed to driving the industry in this process.

Now, India, I really believe that the cloud is super-important, even more important than it is for the developed world for two reasons. The first is because it is a catalyst for IT usage and IT adoption. Many of you know that we have lived with this funny paradox in India for the last decade. We’re really successful at exporting IT services and talent, but when it comes to utilizing technology domestically, we’re actually quite poor.

And outside the 1,000 large companies, the use of IT and PCs in schools and homes, or in government offices, or 4 million small businesses not using technology to run their business, is a big issue. It’s a huge issue for productivity growth. It’s a huge issue for national competitiveness.

This is beginning to change, and we think the cloud is going to be a huge catalyst in actually enabling this wave of IT adoption. And I say that for a few reasons. One of the reasons is affordability. Most of these segments that I’ve talked about are incredibly price-conscious, and the cloud has those wonderful characteristics which it allows people to move CAPEX into operating expenditure. And customers really like that, whether it’s a small business, or a big enterprise.

Another terrific thing about the cloud is what it does for IT skills. On one hand, again, we seem to have an abundance of good people, smart people, IT professionals, developers, but they really don’t want to work for small businesses, and so forth. They would like to work for a company like Cognizant or Microsoft. And the cloud has the potential, as I said, of moving away a lot of the management complexity and, thereby, addressing, in part, the skill shortage.

A third big reason why India should be excited about the cloud is piracy. Although as a nation we’ve made good progress in addressing piracy over the last few years, particularly in comparison to some of our neighbors, it’s still a high-piracy country with 65 percent aggregate software piracy. And the issue here is it has prevented the emergence of software product companies that address the domestic market. There are a few exceptions, like Dali, or Ramco Systems, but not many. The cloud here has a huge promise of allowing ISVs and software product companies to achieve global scale, and address the piracy problem.

And, lastly, India has what C.K. Prahalad used to call a “no forgetting curve,” which is there’s no legacy to dismantle. If you go to the developed world, they have a lot of investments in IT infrastructure, and on-premise software, and IT departments, and they have to work through what they do with all this.

For the most part, outside the big companies, India doesn’t have that. We’re all going to be adopting IT for the first time. And so, much like the land line revolution never happened, we leaped directly to mobile phones, you know, our view is, India is going to leap directly into the cloud.

So, these are some of the reasons why we’re incredibly bullish about cloud adoption in India, and what it means for our economy. And, you know, the numbers are quite exciting. We launched some of our cloud services rather recently. It was only the end of last year that we brought Microsoft Online Services to India. And just a little while before we introduced Azure. And the numbers are quite staggering. If you look at Microsoft Online Services, which is e-mail and collaboration in the cloud, there are a couple of thousand people who are in experimentation, and more than 650 paying customers today, and that number is changing every hour.

If you look at Azure, Windows Azure, and SQL Azure, we have 250 partners who are working with Azure, and there are 4,700 applications already which partners and developers have built on this platform. We have 22,000 developers who have been trained, and are every day building, writing to Azure, 2,500 students across 20 top universities. When you look at big hosters, like Reliance, or NetMagic, they’re using our cloud technology. So, it’s just a staggering amount of momentum considering just how recent all this has been.

So, adoption is one part of the message I wanted to leave you with. The other one is, what does the cloud mean for our own IT services companies, what does it mean for our 1.4 million developers? The last 10 years has been a pretty fantastic story for Indian IT, and we believe that if we embrace the cloud, and lead the world, we have an opportunity to consolidate our leadership as an industry. In fact, this also has a fairly significant promise in terms of what it does for jobs. One of our consulting companies, Zenoff (ph), has actually done a very nice study which I’m sure they’ll be happy to share, where they’ve estimated that over the next few years, a net 300,000 new jobs are likely to be created in India by this whole move to the cloud.

So, we’re tremendously excited. Our partners are going to join us on stage in a second to share their own commitment, their own experience, their own excitement, but before that let me welcome on stage our CEO, Steve Ballmer.

STEVE BALLMER: Well, let me say thanks first to all of you for the chance to be here with you today. I want to thank our partners for coming and having a chance to share some of their thoughts, as well, on cloud computing. With all four of the organizations, NIIT, Cognizant, CDC and IISC, we have a long relationship, and they have to stop and say is the cloud the right direction, and what about Microsoft. So, we’re very pleased for their support and their presence here today.

I’m also pleased for the chance to be here in India. I’m not sure I’ve ever been some place that actually the temperature was two times what it was in my city when I left. Seattle is a cold place, and I think I’ve picked one of the hottest times ever to be in Delhi. But, I’m very excited to have the chance to be here.

I want to talk a little bit about the cloud, how I think about the cloud. How we are approaching it. And then go from there. I will say one of the interesting things that we run into is many people don’t know what the cloud is. And yet everybody in our industry bugs us about the cloud. We talk about Windows 7. People get it. It’s a concrete product. People buy it. We’ve got a lot of enthusiasm. Great.

We show the innovations we’re working on in Bing, where we can talk about the change in the platform that we make in Windows Server, and SQL Server, we’re launching our Office 2010 release. We’ve got new phone software coming at the end of this year. We’ve got some fantastic things coming with Xbox to change the landscape for TV and entertainment. But, then I get up and say, “We love the cloud.” What is the cloud? The cloud actually refers to the underlying changes in paradigm that are going on today in the way the IT industry as a whole does its work.

In our own case you could say what are our cloud products, they’re all in the cloud. There is an implication for Windows, for Office, for Bing, for Windows Server, for SQL Server, for Windows Phone, for Internet Explorer, everything we do actually has to morph based upon the changes that we are seeing and the changes that we are driving from the cloud.

So, it relates in some senses to the fusion, the fusion between the Internet, and the enterprise datacenter, the fusion between the PC and the phone, and the browser. The changing interface between what goes on out there and on the devices that I own. And it changes in some senses then the way the software industry, the hardware industry, what we create and how we create it.

So, we have a lot of products that people call cloud products. I noticed  I was curious about what they put up on the little banner behind me. Windows Azure certainly is a product that wouldn’t exist, couldn’t exist, except in the cloud. Exchange Online and SharePoint Online live in the cloud, but the cloud is a phenomenon that affects everything we do. And, in fact, our competitors and our partners, everybody in our industry races to support this new computing paradigm.

I talk about the cloud really through the lens of these five dimensions. First of all, this new computing paradigm called the cloud will create new commercial opportunities. It creates the opportunity for software developers to build and get applications deployed and managed with higher agility and lower cost than ever before. If you’re a developer, a software company here in Delhi, and you want to write an application and sell it, and service it, and operate it globally, that becomes easy in the era of the cloud.

The work building a partner channel, and a service channel, and a sales channel, some of that is still there. But, a lot of it evaporates. The cloud creates opportunities. By the way, the cloud also creates responsibilities.

We see these as both human responsibilities, corporate responsibilities, but also technology responsibilities, security, privacy, reliability, these are characteristics that people will expect from the cloud infrastructure, and certainly there’s not a day now when you can’t pick up the newspaper and read about some major issue in those areas. And that’s going to require a set of technology development.

The cloud will change the way end users think about what they expect from applications. The cloud helps connect people to people and people to information in new ways. So, I like to say the cloud learns and helps you learn. The cloud actually is a platform that includes data. Normally when we think about platforms for building these applications, we think about code, writing this software program. But, in fact, the whole set of data about the world and the data about the user, at least the data that the user wants to make available, with their privacy in mind, all the world’s data becomes part of the fabric that people use to create applications, so that applications can get smarter, based upon the data about what’s going on in the world, and what’s going on with the user.

Search engines show this phenomenon, but they’re really just a start. Applications will change in the cloud, because we morph the way we connect people to people, not just people to information, it’s not just people, there’s this data platform. We think  we talked today about social networking, we’re going to show some phenomenal new things in our Xbox LIVE service, which connects people in kind of leisure time activities around the Internet. We’ll be showing some of those over the next few weeks. But, in everything we do people will assume that collaboration is a fundamental part of every application.

Even if all you’re trying to do is report a transaction with a customer in an ERP system. The ability to pop out and in an ad hoc way talk to the customer, ask them if they had a problem, record their customer experience as part of the record. That’s going to change, again, with the right privacy, the right security. The cloud changes, the cloud changes the device that we use. Some people think the cloud means everything goes into the Internet, and we don’t have any intelligence in our phones, in our PCs, in our TVs. I think that’s just wrong.

We’re busy integrating the best of the PC, the phone and the TV with the best of the browser and the Internet. You can see that in some of the work we’ve previewed, for example, in Internet Explorer 9, which uses those things together. And everything we envision says, smart devices talking to a smart back end.

The cloud also changes what we think of as servers today, physical hardware servers, as well as the software themselves. You won’t buy a machine in the future. You’ll either subscribe to a service, or somebody will buy a container, it could be as big a shipping container, it could look more like a refrigerator. But, it will have computing and storage and networking all integrated in together. Those businesses will fuse, and the software that you use to write program of those things will change. You won’t write and manage applications the same way, and that’s why we’re evolving the way you write programs with our Windows Azure and SQL Azure products.

So, the hardware and software platform from the front end to the back end, the notion of data and socialization and communications as core services, all of those things change in addition to the fact that, of course, things come from the Internet and they might get paid for on a different business model, and the like.

STEVE BALLMER: So, we’re very excited about the cloud. Everything we’re doing is oriented to the cloud. Every one of our businesses is embracing the cloud. And the chance to have some partners here in India working with us on the leading edge of some of these phenomena, with Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Windows Azure and SQL Azure, is really exciting to us. It says here I’m about 30 seconds over, on time. So, I’m going to wrap at that point, turn things back over to the moderator, and I’ll look forward later to having a chance to take some of your questions. Thank you.

MODERATOR: Thanks a lot, Steve, for that wonderful insight around cloud computing story at a global level, and our cloud vision per se. So, I would like to take this opportunity and invite Mr. Rajendra Pawar, chairman and cofounder of NIIT, around the big bets that NIIT is making on Windows Azure, as they look to train students in India on Windows Azure. So, Mr. Rajendra Pawar, please be on stage.

RAJENDRA PAWAR: Welcome friends. This is the 20th year of our relationship with Microsoft, pretty much when the sub was formed. And we have fond memories of that, because we created something very unique called the premier education and training partnership. And I think during those 20 years there’s a very large list of things we have done together. As I was trying to look back at those 20 years to reflect on some of the modern testing milestones, Win 95, 1995, we did the first simultaneous launch of the product with the training programs. And that time we did it. We said we’ll follow the sun. We started in Atlanta, did it in Mumbai, did the first course in Bangkok and then in Singapore. And we thought four countries was a lot.

And then ever since that time every new product announcement at Microsoft we’ve done a simultaneous launch of the training programs. In the 10th year we did something even more interesting when the SQL Server Visual Studio 2005, we actually did the training programs before the launch of the program. So, we had to work with the developers and the teams at Redmond to build the content before even this happened.

And, of course, during this time Win 98 and .NET, and C#, I think 2001 was an important announcement, because that’s the time when we saw the move of Microsoft from languages to platform. That was a very, very significant move, 10 years ago. Almost as significant, and perhaps this one is more significant than the one we are seeing today.

And then over the last three years, over 100,000 people on the technologies which we started with the 2005, and the last three years alone over 100,000 people certified on Microsoft, and gather that that tipped the balance in favor of APAC having the largest number of certifications and beating the whole EMEA region, as well.

So, that was a significant phase, as well. And I think it’s on this background that we see today’s event as another very significant event. We look at Microsoft’s role at this time of doing a fundamental transformation, or aiding, or facilitating or catalyzing this fundamental transformation that’s happening in computing around the cloud. And so we have quite obviously been working with Microsoft, and so today we are announcing a simultaneous launch in 40 countries this time, every continent. And so simultaneously today we will be looking at launching this program.

So, essentially I think we have believed at NIIT that India’s software story is a talent-driven story. Many countries see demand and so on and do forth and therefore respond to demand. I think our country has been a good example where talent has been built and talent has driven usage. Talent has created markets. So, for us I think the partnership with Microsoft is significant, because Microsoft has created the new waves of demand, and we have increasingly seen it as a role to make the market (inaudible) even before that new product comes. So, today in 40 countries we are announcing this, and we also I think wanted to symbolically launch the book, so to say, which marks the beginning of this new phase of our relationship.

So, I’m delighted that we continue work very closely together. I’m delighted that this big change, the whole Azure movement, is going to be transformational, very important. It will take things to the small businesses at a pace that all of us have wanted to see, but hasn’t happened in the past. And so, our being present in the nooks and corners of this country I think we’ll get an opportunity to leverage that from NIIT, to drive this Azure movement, much, much stronger and better than we have done with anything from Microsoft so far. So, we’re delighted to be here, and we’re delighted to join in this movement.

CHANDRA SEKARAN: Thanks, Rajendra Pawar, for that.

With that we’d like to also ensure that this announcement is followed by course curriculum, which NIIT is announcing today on cloud services. So, I’d request Steve to join us for a brief minute on the stage to unveil this course curriculum from NIID.

PARTICIPANT: (Off mike.)

STEVE BALLMER: Great. This is all available, I’m assured, online. It just doesn’t make for quite the photo op. That’s right. Thank you very, very much. Thank you.

PARTICIPANT: Thanks, Steve, and thanks Mr. Pawar for that wonderful session on NIIT’s big bet on Azure. With that, I’d like to announce Mr. Chandra Sekaran, who is managing director for global delivery and president at Cognizant, to share with us the strategic bets that Cognizant is making on Windows Azure platform.

Mr. Chandra, on stage, please.

CHANDRA SEKARAN: Thank you. Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. It’s my pleasure to be here alongside Microsoft as their systems integration partner, to launch solutions on Microsoft Azure platform. As a leading provider of consulting, technology and business processes outsourcing services in the industry, we see four major forces driving changes. And those changes will actually drive adoption of cloud technology.

These changes are a wider economic reset, and as we are coming out of the recession, and there are a lot of changes that are happening in the macroeconomic environment across the businesses around the globe. And the new business models, driven by structural changes that are happening across multiple industry segments, and the changing nature of work, the emergence of social networking and things like that, the changing nature of work itself, and people are really looking forward to having virtual teams across the globe, and maturing technology. Azure is a good example that really enables new delivery models that are emerging from the industry.

Cognizant vertically aligned next-generation services to leverage cloud technologies to deliver levels of savings that have been unheard of before. These are quite disruptive, and our customers really welcome it. We’re already supporting customers in providing infrastructure as a service, platform as a service, as well as software as a service, by partnering with the industry leaders like Microsoft. And we are expanding this portfolio to offer new generation of services to customers in India, as well as around the globe.

We have consciously chosen Microsoft as a platform to offer our services, because our thought processes and Microsoft strategy on Azure is very well-aligned. And we are really looking forward to working with Microsoft very closely in taking solutions to customers in India.

The Indian firms are ideally positioned for offering cloud services, because our coverage is in India, as well as government institutions, in driving towards efficiency and productivity improvement, while keeping the fixed costs as low as possible. Because, of this, I believe that many next-generation solutions will more widely be adopted in India, much faster than other developed countries, and that will really help in launching new-generation service delivery models and industry.

Cognizant has a long history in building a very strong relationship with Microsoft. And over the years we have been working side by side in bringing newer solutions, new technology solutions, to our customers around the globe, and we are very happy to be working with Microsoft once again on this cloud initiative.

Cognizant has created a vertically aligned sort of industry processes, frameworks, transformation services and pre-built solutions accelerators to enable implementation, migration and management of cloud-enabled application portfolios for our customers on Azure platform, and other Microsoft technologies.

These services are encapsulated in what we call as our portfolio of cloud-enabled services under the name of Octane portfolio. The Octane portfolio has three dimensions. One is the Octane industry-specific solutions, where we have actually encapsulated our knowledge and expertise in multiple industry segments, and created frameworks, business solution frameworks.

For example, we have actually developed the customer management and profiling system for the insurance industry. We have actually created PowerHealth, which is an application that really integrates multiple healthcare applications on a cloud platform. We have actually developed a supply chain solution for the oil and gas industry. So, these are a few examples where we have actually introduced vertical specific solutions on a cloud platform, which really operates on Microsoft Azure right now.

And we also have the second dimension of Octane portfolio, which is the Octane Transformation Services. These are professional services that really help enterprise extend the application portfolio to the cloud.

And then, the third service is the Octane Foundation Suite, it’s a set of pre-built solution accelerators that is going to enable the enterprise to move their legacy applications onto a cloud platform.

So, it gives me great pleasure to acknowledge Cognizant’s strong alignment with our trusted partner, and industry leader, Microsoft in our cloud solutions and thought leadership. And I’m confident that our collaboration in India and globally will unlock and create exciting new levels of business value to our customers in India as well as around the globe.

Thank you for this opportunity. It’s wonderful being here. Thank you. (Applause.)

MODERATOR: Thanks a lot, Chandra, for that intro and big bet with Cognizant on Azure.

With that, I would like to also invite Mr. Peter Yip, CEO of CDC, a global ISV, around the big bet that they are making around applications on Windows Azure.

Peter, please.

PETER YIP: Good morning. Thank you very much. We’re happy to be, the first time for me, in Delhi. Beautiful city.

Our relationship with Microsoft is not as long as 20 years as NIIT, but we’re almost over 15 years. I still remember in 2002, I don’t know if you remember, Steve, you were there endorsing us, Pivotal CRM, and we were one of the first applications on .NET. And this morning, actually, I watched a video, and Steve, you look as young as when you were in 2002. That’s good news.

And certainly the past 15 years have been very, very successful for us and Microsoft. We bet our future on Microsoft, and we were one of the first applications on a CRM platform on the SQL Server. We were the first on .NET. And we’re so pleased that we have the opportunity to be one of the first on the cloud platform.

This morning, actually, I was with one of the biggest customers in the world, and he happened to be here, India. So I wake up in the morning, I’m laying there, what, four o’clock in the morning, I wake up like all of us when we go to a city around the world, we meet our biggest customers. So, the first question he asked me, and let me tell you about this customer. We’re talking about how many seats. It’s all on Microsoft. With 80,000 agents around the world are in India, and you talk about IT adoption in India, and they’re all SME. The first question they ask me, what is your cloud strategy, Mr. Yip? How can you make it more affordable to our 80,000 agents?

And within the first year of implementation of our partnership, our joint customer, if you will, this is one of the largest in India, and they take us to the limit, they take us the Pivotal CRM and certainly the Microsoft platform to the limit in terms of the stress, the workload. And they are talking about processing something like 150,000 per day. And we don’t see that even in North America and Europe. And this is fantastic in terms of gaining the adoption and taking us to the limit in terms of performance.

So, I have a good answer for him. He’s actually happy, and going back and asked me when we can release our cloud platform on the Azure, and certainly we’re very happy with the support of Microsoft. We have the first prototype up and running in the past couple of months now, and we are making a commitment to have it delivered sometime toward the end of this year.

So, we’re betting our future on Microsoft, and we’re being successful, making a lot of money. Thank you, Steve, again, and we’re betting more on the cloud. And they asked me to talk about India. The first time here in your nation’s capital. It was so amazing. I was fortunate myself, you know, in 1978 I started a company with a gentleman from India, and when I made the first million, at that time, we did a lot, not quite outsourcing the way India has been evolving over the past 30 years, but certainly India has become a powerhouse.

A lot of people look at India as a low-cost outsourcing, if you will. And we, CDC, and certainly Microsoft are embracing and making India as the center of a cloud ecosystem, if you will, with training, students and professional services. And I look at India more than just India as a domestic market, if you will, after the successful implementations, this morning, with one of the largest financial institutions, actually, we signed two more, bigger. I’m so happy, I do not want to say the name of our competitor, but our name, CDC software, and with our partner Microsoft was talking about in the corridor of a competitor, where did it come from? In India, you talk about India in terms of 20,000 branches. We’re not talking about 20,000 branches, 200,000 branches, and many of them, again, working with agencies, and partners, the SME. So, cloud is very, very exciting for us.

And one of the reasons we were selected is because we have a strategy because of Microsoft’s cloud platform going forward. And to us, India becomes more than, I mentioned about cost center, becoming a center of support for us. India, today, is training our partners, training our offices in Australia, training our offices in Singapore. Singapore is reporting in India today. I am honored to have our managing director Naga here today. Don’t talk about cost cutting and using India, talk about India’s domestic market, and beyond India into supporting Southeast Asia, supporting Middle East, and supporting African nations, because the fact that you are past 30 years of experience, the businesses process, and your best practices.

If you’re understanding the product development cycle, understanding the broader road map by seeing one of the best, largest and most compact implementation in India, those best practices is so important. They will continue to give us feedback to improve our product life cycle, to improve and expand into the cloud.

You talk about paradigm, that’s really the word, paradigm with the ecosystems, with the cloud platform we have a chance, as a small company like us, we have a chance to go and take on the big guy. And we are so happy we beat the big guy in the country of India, and thank you so much. (Applause.)

MODERATOR: (Off mike)  since we are running a little late on time, I would request Professor S.K. Nandy, who heads our Supercomputer Education and Research Center of the Indian Institute of Science, to briefly address about the big bet that they are making for India.

S.K. NANDY: Thank you, and good morning to all.

Coming from an academic institution, I thought I would start by demystifying what is a cloud. But then, before me, Ravi and Steve have done a job much better than what I could have ever done. And so, what I would start by saying is, I would draw a parallel with the cloud. What is a cloud in the real sense is a reservoir of water, and it rains, and it serves all the people, and the entire ecosystem.

So, I would therefore look upon cloud computing as a cloud in the sense wherein you have the entire computing infrastructure somewhere distributed all around the world. The only key difference here is that unlike the cloud which you cannot ask it to rain here, you can demand the kind of computing that you would want. You could share the computing resources, and what’s more, it is far more efficient than having your own system, maintaining it and adding to the carbon emission. So, it is a computing paradigm by which you are not only doing a service to the community as a whole, but you are also doing a service to the ecosystem.

Now, so it is basically making available the entire computing infrastructure, and data is available on demand. It accounts for scalability in needs, so small-scale industry, small and medium industry, startups, they don’t have to bother about setting up their own infrastructure, but then they can rely on the cloud, and pay as they use. And what’s more, a platform such as Windows Azure can serve as a key tool to alleviate some of the largest socioeconomic needs of the country. For example, it can serve as an IT enabler, even in the education sector. It can be an enabler for various IT-related activities for the common mass. For example, the UID project, we could benefit by using the cloud infrastructure, the server LANs, then you can have your personal information out there, you can collaborate, and it essentially, as I said before, it serves the greater cause of reducing the carbon footprint.

Also, there are other applications that are emerging because of the 3G/4G wireless networks, and all these applications can, in turn, take benefit of the cloud. Again, coming from the Indian Institute of Science as an academic, our engagement with Microsoft will be to carry out state-of-the-art research, and the study of basic resource allocation constructs and strategies for addressing enterprise needs in the cloud. What I mean by that is, a mechanism by which you would guarantee quality of service on the cloud platform.

I also believe that institutes, like IIC, the IITs and the other national institutes would benefit a lot by taking advantage of the computing efficiency and cost-effectiveness that is brought about by cloud computing for a platform or an environment. It will serve as an enabler or a platform for various innovations in IT, and typically new ideas and innovations in power management, resource provisioning, and what is also going to emerge is a new area of research, which is cloud economics.

If I have time, maybe I would just summarize?


S.K. NANDY: All right. And just to summarize, I would say with a robust platform such as Microsoft’s Windows Azure coupled with the scalability and cost-effectiveness that the cloud computing represents, IT now becomes an even key tool that can be leveraged to alleviate some of the largest socioeconomic problems of India.

IIS’s engagement will be that to study the resource allocation constructs, and strategy specifically for addressing enterprise needs in the cloud. Thank you. (Applause.)


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