Big Data News! – An overview of Ontario Cloud adoption

Last week I had the huge pleasure of meeting the CIO for Ontario Province Dave Nicholl, and members of his executive team, for our upcoming white paper ‘Cloud Computing and the Drummond Report‘.

Innovation Opportunities at the Touch Points

As one of the team Samantha Liscio writes in a blog here Ontario is very progressive in their adoption of online government, with all kinds of permits and services accessible via the web.

This is really important. As described in the previous blog Social CRM for Government it’s been calculated a web CRM interaction costs about $1 versus a face to face one about $15. Those parts of government carrying this unnecessary 15x cost factor are ideal candidates for transforming to new online models.

Dave and his team have very kindly offered to provide inputs to our white paper targeting this theme, incorporating their case study into the mix.

This Microsoft Hyper-V case study demonstrates that Cloud Computing is playing a big part in this. As Dave says:

“Cloud computing is the way of the future,” says Nicholl. “We want a seamless e-government system, where citizens and business are offered a one-window approach across all of our ministries. This partnership was a first successful step in the direction toward a better way of using and delivering online services.”

O'Reilly Radar - What is Big Data?Big Data News!

As well as Social CRM and Cloud Computing, Samantha also touches on “Big Data” in her blog, citing an example of how embedded devices in the highways could collect vast amounts of traffic data that new Cloud apps could then be used to analyze, greatly increasing public safety as one highly desirable public benefit.

We’re launching a new publication to focus on this specifically: Big Data News!

Conclusion – Building a Cloud powerhouse in Ontario

Although cost-cutting is the primary focus of the Drummond Report it’s really more important for Ontario & Canada to focus on tackling the problem head on through a focus on new growth – An increase in revenues, taxes and jobs will deal the deficit issue more of a hammer blow than any accounting exercise.

So in particular what blew me away about the meeting was how insightful Dave and the team was about how this might be best achieved.

With a focus on stimulating economic growth through the development of a Cloud Computing industry, we quickly zeroed in on the SaaS segment (Software as a Service) as being key and I couldn’t have agreed more. IaaS and associated data-centres is a core building block for sure, but hyper growth models come from SaaS.

A favourite example for Dave is the Canadian SaaS venture Rypple, their recent acquisition by Salesforce.com showing how it accelerates the influx of technology investment capital into the economy.

So stay tuned. By focusing on the SaaS model and key growth segments like Big Data analysis our next objectives are to identify what next steps we can take to begin buiding a related innovation R&D program.

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