I was at the AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas for the past week and was very satisfied with all of it. I attended both keynotes and a number of technical sessions that were all very helpful. Amazon continues to impress me with their focus on innovation in the AWS as well and their intensity in continuing to reduce the cost of using their cloud facilities. Several announcements were made that included:
  • S3 cost reduced by 24%
  • new Redshift data warehouse
The technical sessions that I attended included:
  • Develop, Deploy and Debug with Eclipse
  • Monitoring with Cloudwatch
  • Cloud Services for Mobile Developers
  • Using the AWS Mobile SDK
  • What Can You Do With $100
  • Big Data With AWS
  • Developing Mobile Games in the Cloud
  • Being Productive with the AWS SDK for Java
  • Awesome Applications With Open Data
  • Understanding AWS Database Options
One of the key things that I realized was that simply moving to the cloud is not the only activity necessary for the optimal cost savings. Once you are in the cloud you need to regularly monitor your cloud usage to ensure that unneeded resources are not being used and then check your price plan against actual usage and tune that to what is needed. Developers may not be policing themselves and leaving instances running when not been used (evenings/weekends for example). Making this a financial organization responsibility rather than engineering might also allow incentivizing cost analysts to determine an optimal mix for your needs. For cost analysts to be able to perform this function Amazon should consider a training program for them to understand how to access and interpret usage information and then how to determine the best pricing plan for the needs of the organization.