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Dear Dr. Cloud,


I keep seeing your virtual trade show advertised all over the place. What does all this mean?


--Physical – not Virtual - in Philly


Dear Physical,


It’s an interesting idea. It’s my first virtual trade show too. What’s it like? Much like a regular trade show – from the comfort of your own couch. So, you can expect:


-- Riveting keynotes from folks like BMC CTO, Kia Behnia, Cisco, Citrix and Accenture – as well as Donna Scott of Gartner and even some customers!

-- Partner track sessions from folks like Dell and NetApp

-- An exhibition hall with booths to explore, staffed by people wearing matching virtual shirts (not really!)

-- A networking area, where you can grab some coffee and chat with folks – like me! Well, not me. My alter egos… though.


There’s also movies, interactive demos – and more. It’s a great chance to learn more about our latest solution – BMC Cloud Lifecycle Management 2.0.


I hope to see you there – register now! – and get comfy on that couch. Or Herman Miller Aeron Chair. Or your beanbag. See you there.


Dr. Cloud answers cloudy questions on Tuesdays (or when he's late, Wednesdays). To reach the good doctor, email

Stumped in Springfield

Posted by Doctor Cloud Apr 7, 2011

Dr. Cloud,


I’ve never brought up my job at cocktail parties. No one really wants to head about enterprise infrastructure. I’m pretty sure most of the world doesn’t know that datacenters even exist. Lucky them.


But, now, the notion of the cloud has become pretty consumer-oriented and pervasive – so I find myself not only explaining cloud, but defending it to the crotchety old people who seem to be blaming cloud for all the ills of technology. Have you seen that Simpson’s episode? That’s my world. How do you handle the cloud questioning at baby showers and birthday parties?

Old man yells at cloud.jpg

--Stumped in Springfield, AnyState


Dear Stumped,


Boy do I know this problem – and boy do I love that Simpsons reference. I was recently at my physical therapist, strengthening my sympathy tendon, and he asked me what I did. I said… cloud. And I realized, most people have no idea what a data center is. And most people – except gamers – can’t imagine needing “more computing.” So, here’s my attempt at a story – but I welcome your feedback and input.


Many businesses, like banks and stores and movie companies, have to process thousands of banking transactions or retail sales or stream movies to millions of customers. This requires a ton of computing power – and data storage. Far beyond anything you could store in a roomful of laptops. This computing power is expensive. Even building a room to store this computing power is expensive. Maintaining those computers is expensive.


And, for many of these needs, they come and go over the month, the year, or even the day. So, there are long stretches of time when all this investment is sitting around, idly – which add to the real cost of the whole thing.


So, companies are using a technology called cloud computing to make better use of those resources. Some people opt to buy them from 3rd parties, only when they need them. Some pool their own resources so that the same computing power can be used for end-of-year retail needs, and April tax season – sharing the same investment.


How’s that? I don’t think it’ll stop Grandpa Simpsons for shaking his fist at the heavens… but maybe it will keep us from Doh! moments.


Dr. Cloud answers cloudy questions on Tuesdays (or when he's late, Wednesdays). To reach the good doctor, email