When last we left Bob – the wasteful and careless IT infrastructure guy who leaves his home AC blasting away while he’s at work, his car running all night, and the water on in the bathroom after he leaves – he was squandering thousands of dollars a month because there was no easy way to automatically turn off his non-production AWS instances when they’re not being used by his company’s developers and testers.
As Bob boarded his flight to AWS re:Invent 2015 in Las Vegas, after of course leaving his car engine on in Satellite Parking Lot C, he wondered to himself:
“How could the big cloud service providers – AWS, Azure, Google – promise to be true utilities if they don’t give you an easy way to schedule off times for your compute resources when you’re not using them?”
Bob landed at McCarron airport in Vegas. Being a naturally wasteful person, he briefly considered purchasing a new car to drive to the Venetian, but decided he didn’t have enough time to haggle with a car dealer.
Arriving at the AWS re:Invent show floor, Bob walked past hundreds of booths displaying all manner of cloud-related offerings…there were cloud management platforms, security tools, data analytics applications, storage solutions, logging and monitoring tools, and of course dozens of specialized consulting services. All seemed to promise some sort of panacea to address one or more “pain points” related to cloud computing.
(There was also a wide array of hackathons, certifications, breakout sessions, and bootcamps on seemingly dozens of topics. There was even an official AWS pub crawl and something called the Tatonka Challenge, which upon further investigation turned out to be a fancy name for a chicken wing eating contest.)
Then something remarkable happened. He ran across booth #641 and a company called ParkMyCloud, which had a small but colorful display area with a sign that read,
“A self service web app that lets you schedule on/off times for your AWS instances.”
There it was.
Amidst all of the complex tools, platforms and solutions and all the hype and hyperbole, here was a simple premise that cut through it all: A simple, programmable switch that turns your AWS instances on and off based on your company’s cloud consumption patterns. So, for example, if your developers and testers work between 7:00 a.m. and midnight, you can turn your dev and test resources off between 12:01 a.m. and 6:59 a.m….and make a big dent in your hefty AWS bill.
Bob approached the ParkMyCloud booth and learned more. He saw the EMA and 451 research reports and customer testimonials stating how simple ParkMyCloud was to configure – no installation necessary – and how easy it was to use. And the savings! By turning off their idle instances, ParkMyCloud customers were reducing their AWS bills by thousands of dollars.
For a moment, Bob was conflicted. He was so used to living life in an entirely wasteful and blissfully careless manner that the concept of turning something off when you’re not using it was actually foreign and jarring. ParkMyCloud would be a big step for him in living a more purposefully efficient way.
“I can do this,” said Bob. “I should do this. I will do this.”
Thrilled with his decision to use ParkMyCloud, Bob celebrated by Uber-ing to his hotel. “Yes, this on-demand thing definitely feels good.”