Aug 142014
 

Cloud Computing, more than a new technology, is a new IT consumption model. It allows using and paying for resources on demand, avoiding any investment in fixed assets. With this model customers can attain tremendous cost savings, while at the same time having rapid access to IT resources that can be used to experiment, innovate, and grow, with having to wait for funding. Everyone should be using cloud services at least for some elements of their IT architectures.

However, the cloud model has a low adoption rate in Costa Rica. While 68% of firms claim to be using cloud services, only 38% are using something other than SaaS. Moreover, most of the SaaS users are running email (e.g., Gmail) and personal backups (e.g., DropBox), which are not necessarily cutting edge applications. Thus, the cloud in Costa Rica is still in its infancy.

In the video below (in Spanish) corresponds to a talk I gave on May 27, 2014, at the Costa Rican Technology Research Club to CIOs and managers from Costa Rican firms. Through the talk, we first go through the elements of the cloud business model. We then analyze its economic value, starting with the savings enjoyed by providers through their economies of scale and the aggregation of users’ demands, and then focusing on the value of the cloud’s scalability for end users. Finally, we discuss the results of a survey done to 174 Costa Rican firms to reflect if and how they are using cloud services. The talk received some media coverage in local newspaper El Financiero.

I hope to write more on these specific topics on separate posts.

Oct 262012
 

Can an IT services provider use technical support as a mechanism to educate and transfer knowledge to its customers, and in turn increase its revenues? My first research article, which I summarize in this post, finds that technical support has a very significant impact on customers’ demand for the service. In particular, cloud infrastructure customers who have the opportunity of learning from their provider consume more of the service, are able to make a better use of it (e.g., deploy horizontally scalable infrastructures), and do not forget, at least not quickly, what they have learned. Continue reading »

Mar 192011
 

Developing software is difficult. We may have the best developers in the world, the most agile development processes, and the best coding tools available, and it will continue to be difficult. This is so because of software’s nature, because of its essence. The only way of not having problems developing software is by not developing it! Could it be that modern PaaS technologies are the silver bullet we need to kill the software development werewolf?

Begegnung im Haus (Werwolf von Neuses)

Begegnung im Haus (Werwolf von Neuses) via Wikimedia Commons

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Aug 092010
 

How can we frame the cloud phenomenon within the technological innovation literature stream? Can we say it’s a naturally evolving creative destruction process where entrants offer services technologically superior to those of incumbents? Or is it more of a disruptive innovation, in the sense that the same standard servers we’ve used for years are now offered in a simpler and more cost-efficient manner appealing to the less demanding customers? If the cloud business model is technological discontinuity, is it competence enhancing or competence destroying? My conclusion is that the cloud is the fastest growing open innovation ecosystem we’ve seen yet, and however we frame it, it’s an exciting industry to study.
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