What's on the minds of the CIOs?
It is Cloud Computing. The adoption of Cloud and the high impact that it brings to any IT
environment has been the focal point of discussion at every global CIO meet. It further led
Nicholas Carr to write an afterword to his bestseller `The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from
Edison to Google'.
In September 2010, I traveled to Monarch Beach, California, to attend the InformationWeek
500 Conference, a large annual gathering of CIOs and other information technology executives.
My most recent book, The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains, had come out a
couple of months earlier, and Fritz Nelson, InformationWeek`s editorial director, had invited me
to the event to give a talk on the book`s themes. As I sat in on the other sessions, though, it
became clear that the conference`s major thrust was cloud computing, a topic that had been
the focus of my previous book, The Big Switch. Figuring out ways to capitalize on the promise of
the cloud, while tempering the risks of being an early adopter of the powerful new set of
technologies, had risen to the very top of the CIO`s agenda.
During a break in the proceedings, I had the pleasure of sitting down for a coffee with Anubhav
Saxena, a top executive with HCL, a $5.7 billion IT services company and one of the
conference`s lead sponsors. Anubhav had been an enthusiastic reader of The Big Switch, and he
was eager to share with me HCL`s multifaceted plan to deliver the power of cloud computing to
its global clientele. He walked me through a PowerPoint presentation on his laptop, and he
gave me an early look at MyCloud, a service the company is developing that will provide
companies with a simple dashboard for building, managing, and integrating cloud systems,
applications, and services from a variety of providers. In The Big Switch, I had argued that the
creation of intuitive cloud interfaces would be essential to the broad adoption of cloud
computing, and MyCloud was one of the most ambitious cloud interfaces I had yet seen.
One thing led to another, and Anubhav was soon asking me whether I had given any thought to
writing an afterword to The Big Switch, reviewing the enormous progress in cloud computing
technology and adoption that had taken place since the book was published early in 2008. I told
him that, having spent the last two years researching and writing The Shallows, I was eager to
revisit the subject of cloud computing. A series of phone calls and meetings ensued, which
culminated in HCL`s agreement to provide me with financial, logistical, and intellectual support
in writing an update to The Big Switch. The afterword you are now reading is the result of that
collaboration, and I am pleased to dedicate it to Anubhav and his colleagues.
An Excerpt from the Afterword
To read entire Afterword, visit http://cloudsrollin.com
About Nicholas G. Carr
Nicholas Carr (aka Nick) writes about technology, culture, and economics. His books have been
translated into more than 20 languages. Nick has been a columnist for The Guardian in London
and has written for The Atlantic, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Wired, and other
periodicals. Nick is a member of the Encyclopedia Britannica's editorial board of advisors, is on
the steering board of the World Economic Forum's cloud computing project, and writes the
popular blog Rough Type. He is a sought-after speaker for academic and corporate events.
Earlier in his career, he was executive editor of the Harvard Business Review. He holds a B.A.
from Dartmouth College and an M.A., in English and American Literature and Language, from
For more information, please visit http://cloudsrollin.com
About HCL ISD
HCL Technologies Infrastructure Services Division, also known as HCL ISD, falls in the category of
the 4 percent American new public companies that have crossed, or are set to cross, the one
billion revenue mark in the first 10 years of their inception. HCL ISD manages mission critical
environments and handles over 3 million devices for over 1.7 million end users. The company's
clientele includes 20 percent of Fortune 100 organizations and has over 250 customers, Fortune
1000 companies. The company's fast growth has attracted several bestselling authors to include
the HCL ISD case study in their bestsellers.
For more information, please visit www.hclisd.com