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IBM Watson headquarters in New York City

IBM Gets Two Patents for Cloud Data Control

Newest patents are about control over where and how data is stored, accessed, and processed

IBM has added a few more cloud patents to its holster. While not immediately impactful, going forward the patents will help with cloud delivery models.

Two new inventions have been patented that use analytics to gain more control over cloud data. One deals with dynamically moving workloads based on an automatic analysis, while the other is dubbed an “express lane” that gives certain data priority when using analytics.

IBM is looking to not only enable cloud infrastructure, but to enable effective working with the data within. Both patents are about the level of control over where and how data is stored, accessed and processed. Both have implications on analytics, an area of particular interest for IBM.

Many of the big tech giants are taking an enterprise slant to their cloud offerings to further draw a line between them and public clouds. Dealing with big data and analytics are driving cloud innovation. The two patents deal with more effectively prioritizing working with data and dynamically moving those workloads around based on cost.

HP is also focusing on Big Data cloud offerings, and so is SAP. Service providers who don’t necessarily have a direct analytics play are also getting in on the act. OVH is launching a big data cloud based on IBM systems. Rackspace recently launched a big data cloud as well.

The express lane patent isn’t a workaround of net neutrality, but about moving certain processes ahead of the pack when conducting an analysis. U.S Patent #8,639,809, “Predictive Removal Of Runtime Data Using Attribute Characterizing" organizes the data queue when performing analysis for efficiency.

“Processing data in a cloud is similar to managing checkout lines at a store -- if you have one simple item to purchase, an express lane is preferable to waiting in line behind someone with a more complicated order,” said IBM inventor Michael Branson, who co-invented the patented technique with John Santosuosso. “Cloud customers don’t want data that can be analyzed and dealt with simply to sit idle behind data that needs more complex analysis. Applying real-time analytics in a cloud can help ensure each piece of data gets the proper attention in a timely manner.”

The other patent deals with dynamically moving workloads between or within clouds to increase performance and lower costs. U.S. Patent #8,676,981 B2 is for routing service requests based on lowest actual costs in a federated cloud service. It’s based on an automatic analysis that determines the most efficient and effective use of available resources. For cloud and service providers, it can help isolate and automatically support their customers’ workloads and better fine-tune usage-based consumption.

IBM invests more than $6 billion of dollars a year in research and development and holds more than 1,560 cloud patents.

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