Cloud Infrastructure

Now Is the Time for a Better Cloud: 5 Executive Insights

Cost, security, and performance critical to second generation cloud.

Edward Screven, Oracle’s chief corporate architect, has been making the case all year for why businesses need a second-generation cloud such as Oracle’s. First-generation clouds—which Oracle started with and which most cloud computing providers still rely on—are not secure enough and require too much labor for customers to use and develop on.

Ed Screven

Edward Screven, chief corporate architect, Oracle

In his keynote for this May 5 online event, Screven lays out the detailed reasons that Oracle built its Gen 2 cloud infrastructure—including Oracle Autonomous Database—and why the company not only offers Gen 2 services to customers but also runs the company on the same infrastructure. “It’s cheaper, it’s more secure, and it’s more productive,” Screven says.

In addition to Screven, you can hear from four very different customers and partners—Vertex, VMware, Naveego, and Altair—as they discuss why they’re using Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. Here are a few insights from these cloud innovators.

Jennifer Kurtz, Vertex CTO

Performance: Jennifer Kurtz, Vertex CTO

Vertex is a tax software company that helps businesses manage their compliance risk for sales, VAT, payroll, and other taxes, and it offers some of its software through a SaaS model running on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

Performance is critical: One Vertex cloud service is a tax determination engine that runs in real time, so it needs very low latency. In moving its applications to the cloud, Vertex’ strategy was to do a simple lift and shift, moving its applications “as is” with a plan to expand the Oracle Cloud capabilities it uses and the Vertex cloud services it offers.

“We thought it was important instead of making it a long project to get up and running quickly, get some learning, and get value for our customers and us,” Kurtz says. “We see it as a journey and a very phased and agile approach.”

Ajay Patel, VMware senior VP product development

Choice: Ajay Patel, VMware senior VP product development

Most big companies run a lot of workloads that depend on both VMware and Oracle, and most of those organizations will be running them in a hybrid environment at least in the near term, using both cloud-based infrastructure and their own data center, says Ajay Patel, VMware senior VP product development.

That’s why VMware and Oracle are making it easy to move those VMware-based applications to the cloud and to manage cloud and on-premises workloads together, using the Oracle Cloud VMware solution. Patel cites three broad use cases for customers to run VMware workloads on Oracle Cloud. First is for a data center extension to quickly add flexible capacity. Second is for disaster recovery. And third is for an entire data center consolidation and reduction plan.

“Customers are saying I just don’t want to be in the data center business,” Patel says. This service lets companies move VMware applications with no refactoring. “Our customers have told us that the simplest way to move to the cloud is to migrate first and then to modernize when it makes sense.”

Katie Horvath, Naveego CEO and president

Speed: Katie Horvath, Naveego CEO and president

Naveego helps companies pull their data from a mix of sources, old and new, and create a “golden record” that is ready for analytics and machine learning. Customers are using it in use cases as diverse as high-speed operating decisions in oil and gas fields to insurance analytics drawing on historical records.

Naveego turned to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure because it could meet those speed and performance needs but also because of cost savings. Naveego needs high availability, since companies depend on its golden records, so it runs out of multiple Oracle availability zones. Oracle doesn’t charge for communications across those domains. That and other savings meant Oracle delivered 60% savings over Amazon Web Services.

“We will connect to a new data source in a matter of minutes, have a golden record built in about an hour, and deliver real-time changes to the data to keep it consistent and up to date at all times,” says Katie Horvath, Naveego CEO and president.

Piush Patel, Altair senior vice president

Scale: Piush Patel, Altair senior vice president

Altair is a global software and services company that helps product designers bring computer-aided design, simulations, machine learning, and analytics into their new creations. Using computational fluid dynamic simulations, for example, designers of products from cars to wind turbines can use Altair to model how air moves over a shape.

Altair needs high-performance computing resources, but the demand goes up and down depending on a customer’s project needs. Altair offers its software as a cloud service, so the service needs to be stable, reliable, and scalable to respond to market demand.

But Altair also uses Oracle Cloud Infrastructure as its own internal development platform, providing engineers with the compute capacity they need without having to invest in building or maintaining additional data center capacity to meet these changing needs.

Not only does this save Altair time and money but it helps the company deliver its ultimate goal—helping customers design better products. “It allows engineers to come up with optimal solutions, because they can look at many more design variations,” says Piush Patel, Altair senior vice president.

chris murphy

Chris Murphy

Chris Murphy is editorial director at Oracle. He was previously editor of InformationWeek. You can follow him on Twitter: @murph_cj.