Cloud Computing-The New Internet? Interview With Jason March Of URS Apptis

Jason March, URS Apptis executive and cloud computing extraordinaire, interviewed with WashingtonExec earlier this summer. Vivek Kundra’s impact on reducing government waste and the future of cloud computing in the commercial and private sectors were discussed. March also gave some tips regarding his favorite mobile gadgets and media tools, spoken like a true cloud supporter.

WashingtonExec:  Could you tell me a little bit about your background?

Jason March: I’ve been in the federal IT consulting world for about 15 years now.  I’ve had a number of different stops along the way but have lived primarily in Northern Virginia here for the last twenty-five years.  I went to school at George Mason and went to graduate school at GW so I’m a product of the area.  I was doing client delivery consulting services for the first part of my career and then about seven or eight years ago I transitioned into a market development, business development type of role.  For the last year or so I’ve been at Apptis – I’ve been the federal sales lead for our cloud computing offerings.

WashingtonExec:  What kind of impact do you think Vivek Kundra had and what do you think will happen now that he is leaving?

Jason March: I think timing wise it took a lot of people by surprise because a lot of these data center consolidation initiatives and cloud and the 25 point plan really just got started. I think cloud has reached that critical mass where they are now going to be able to reap some of the benefits of the investment the government has made and some of the initiatives that Vivek and Aneesh (Chopra) have been pushing for over the last couple of years.  As the first guy to hold this job I think he was kind of an outsider but I think from that perspective he was able to set the federal IT strategy in a new direction.  I hopeful, as a taxpayer and as a citizen, that these initiatives are going to pay off and they are going to convert into the savings that I think can be harvested.

WashingtonExec: Where do you see cloud computing in the next five years?  Do you think it will continue to expand?  Will it level off?  What are your thoughts?

Jason March: It is going to become like the internet, like mobile phones, like mobile computing has over the last couple of years.  I think it is going to become ubiquitous.  I think as an IT platform it is absolutely the right direction. Commercial industry is moving towards outsourcing those noncritical, non-mission essential technology functions. I think when it comes the federal government we are going to see cloud and next generation technologies everywhere.  I think the major industry players; the Microsoft’s, Googles, HP, Dell they are making big investments in this and I think it is going to be everywhere.  I think it’s going to be the way IT is delivered both in the commercial and in the public sector.

WashingtonExec:  What is your favorite tech buzz word?

Jason March: My favorite tech buzzword is convergence. I think it is all coming together.  The lines between devices, software, platforms are all starting to blur. I think if I had to say what I get most excited about it is watching all of those things kind of come together in a mobile device and a tablet in a simplified, easily consumable delivery model.

WashingtonExec:  You’re job is to find the next big thing for your company.  How do you keep up with all of the recent technology?

Jason March: I’m a dedicated Ipad user and I’m a big fan of Flipboard which is an Ipad app that brings all of your social media feeds into one place; Twitter, Fast company online, all things BD – all of those things come together in one place.  It’s great to get all of that in one shot.  Keeping up with the fast pace and the way things are moving and with what all of the big players are doing, it’s almost a full time job.  It doesn’t leave a whole lot of time for reading fiction or things that I would love to read.  The Flipboard tool is really how I keep it all together.

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