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What is your forecast on what happens with the cloud computing momentum in federal government now that Vivek is leaving?
Most people would say that a leadership vacum will impact the pace of acceleration of cloud based technologies. I can't deny that. But I have to tell you that the notion of the acceleration of cloud-based services wasn't driven by leadership. It was driven by the budget. And as technology continues to change, as the nature of technology changes, more and more agencies will mimmick what first generation leaders have done and take that on as their own policy goals, their own budgetary goals. And that happens to be cloud because cloud saves money. They will reflect that in second and third generation adoption. We just have to make sure that first generation users (of cloud) are meeting their objectives. That is unclear right now.
You have been following federal government IT for nearly two decades. How hard is that budget hammer coming down right now?
It really is dependent upon the next election cycle, after we get a new president and see the shape of Congress. You have a Republican House right now. You are more likely going to have a Republican Senate in the next elections. If you then unify that with a Republican President that budget hammer will be very strong.
What is your advice for public sector solution providers who were excited by Kundra's cloud mission. How fast should they be moving to cloud now?
I continue to think that the way cloud is being oriented in the commercial world will be reflective of what happens in government. It now becomes how does the partnering environment continue to move it forward so that it meets government objectives.
There are issues around security, data ownership, the long term price, and the differences between private government cloud versus public cloud. There is a huge gap between what the spending savings are between a private government cloud and the public cloud itself.