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November 29, 2012

Cloud Spectator Lets You Know Your Servers Like You Know Your Car

Sometimes, the best way to understand a complex piece of technology is to use a common, everyday analogy. Think about your car, for example; chances are, you know everything about it – its capabilities, its quirks, its limitations, etc. But if you rent a car from an agency, you won’t know anything about the vehicle, and you could end up with a few nasty surprises. This paradigm is quite similar to the issues that companies face when they turn to the cloud for their computing and storage needs. You know your own servers well enough, but in the cloud, you don’t know what you are getting.

This analogy sprung from the minds of John Vlacich and Kenny Li, co-founders of Cloud Spectator. The company, which has been around for just over a year, is, according to its slogan, “where data is measured.” And Cloud Spectator does indeed conduct tests to ensure that companies are getting the best value. It conducts tests over time, four times a day every day, and is able to put hard data behind any types of issues, like complaints about latency, for example.

The goal, said Vlacich and Li, is to bring transparency to the industry. Companies can toss around terms like “high performance,” but Cloud Spectator cuts through the marketing lingo to actual performance. It segments the data in ways that allow for concrete information on strengths and weaknesses, application performance, best services and more.

The company, while still fairly young, is getting traction from cloud providers. End users want to know information about these providers, and Cloud Spectator can show them hard data on performance. Its method is superior to spot testing, as performance can vary based on time of day, seasonal factors and more. According to Vlacich and Li, many providers are finding Cloud Spectator’s services quite valuable, understanding that this information can only better the industry.

As for the future, the brains behind Cloud Spectator expect to continue on this path, working with cloud providers and partnering with them, exchanging data. Cloud Spectator is also a research company, and it uses the data it collects to help providers understand pricing as well. 

So, the next time you are on a business trip renting a car, just imagine how your trip would be better if you had someone like Cloud Spectator giving you data on that vehicle. Maybe someday, the auto industry will catch up with the cloud…

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Edited by Allison Boccamazzo
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