Had one of those surreal evenings tonight. The keynote at the IEEE summit in Washington went off like clockwork. At this point I could probably do a cloud computing keynote speech in my sleep. It is interesting giving a practical overview to a room full of academics who typically focus on the theoretical rather then practical uses of technology.
After the speech I went for drinks with several of the organizers of the event including a high ranking DoD (Department of Defense) official involved in the management of their technical infrastructure. The conversation ranged from the discussion of "network centric warfare", to Zen, to life after death. In midst of the conversation the official ordered a bottle of Shiraz wine, when we received the bottle its label read "Peace" with a big peace sign on the front. Again extremely ironic given my counterpart and the topic of our conversation.
One interesting piece of news I did get was confirmation that the DoD is indeed looking at creating their own compute cloud and it's usage ranges from run of the mill IT system management to counter network defenses and the word du jour, network-centric operations (NCO). According to wikipedia NCO seeks to translate an information advantage, enabled in part by information technology, into a competitive warfighting advantage through the robust networking of well informed geographically dispersed forces. It appears that cloud computing is an ideal tool to enable this. Who knew?