InformationWeek Radio
Is PaaS Really Necessary?
Date / Time: Tuesday, June 17, 2014, 2:00 PM New York/11:00 AM San Francisco
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We work on the assumption that there are three layers of cloud: first infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), then platform-as-a-service (PaaS), and finally on top of PaaS, software-as-a-service (SaaS). But is the distinction between IaaS and PaaS overblown? Google infrastructure chief Urs Hölzle famously said, “The dichotomy between IaaS and PaaS is a false dichotomy.” Yet many companies that deploy SaaS on IaaS do so without mentioning any specific PaaS in between — think Instagram and Reddit. So is PaaS really necessary? Is it even advisable?

This UBM Tech radio show will explore why many cloud vendors and investors see PaaS as an obvious future requirement, despite lack of uptake by many organizations that have embraced IaaS. We’ll discuss scenarios in which PaaS is important, and others in which configuration management (which might be thought of as a type of PaaS, but is typically not called PaaS) is the dominant player.

You will learn:

  • Why Java and .NET have significantly different PaaS experiences compared with other common environments chosen for SaaS
  • The two different types of PaaS and how they fit with SaaS and IaaS
  • How the increasingly-popular Docker fits into the PaaS world
  • How to prepare your code and architecture for PaaS without buying anything new
  • Why PaaS will increase productivity by minimizing administrative tasks and variability. Faster deployment means more time for development


Wendy Schuchart is a technology journalist with more than a decade experience in enterprise IT. Most recently, Schuchart was the senior site editor of TechTarget's CIO Media Group. She has also served as section editor for UBM's Network Computing and Secure Enterprise. Connect with her on Twitter @wendyschuchart.

Joe Masters Emison, CTO, BuildFax, began his career by winning the 1996 Weird Software Contest with the Mutant Chicken Races and creating the first Windows-based iPod application. Over the past ten years, Joe transitioned from development to systems design and data analysis, creating the first BuildFax engines in 2003, the original architecture in 2007, and designing the Pragmatic Extract-Transform-and-Load (PETL) architecture that has made the current national footprint possible. In addition to running technology and product at BuildFax, Joe also regularly contributes articles to InformationWeek on the cloud and startups. Joe graduated with degrees in English and Mathematics from Williams College and has a law degree from Yale Law School.

Sean Allen, Director of Product Marketing, OutSystems, oversees product marketing for OutSystems. With more than twenty years experience in high-tech organizations like VMware,, and Mercury Interactive, he brings an informed and passionate perspective to a wide variety of modern IT topics. Currently, his energy is being poured into changing the way the world thinks about designing, developing, and delivering beautifully functional multi-device applications while injecting unprecedented efficiency into a status-quo that threatens to swallow enterprise IT whole.

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