At the App Inventor Summit this week, AppScale Systems unveiled what it's calling a "private cloud in a box," or PCB for short. This new trend toward "cloud in a box" sure does give new meaning to the phrase "box pusher."
The AppScale Cloud Platform is what the vendor is typically known for, and it provides through that portability migration and failover for public cloud systems. With the App Inventor Cloud Appliance, AppScale is trying to make it as easy as possible to deploy a private cloud within the four walls of a customer's facility. Based on AppInventor, a web app that aims to simplify the creation and deployment of Android apps, the new appliance is outfitted with a server and wireless tower that automatically runs a fully self-contained AppScale cloud, deploys AppInventor and sets up a private wireless network.
If only every cloud deployment could have such a simple process. The appliance can be purchased fully configured and tested from AppScale or in a DIY model for those who prefer to tinker.
"App Inventor is designed to make Android app development accessible to everyone," said Hal Abelson, professor of computer science at MIT and creator of the App Inventor Project at the MIT Center for Mobile Learning, in a prepared statement. "Combined with the AppScale appliance, even those who do not have reliable access to the Internet can become mobile developers using state-of-the-art cloud technology."
The appliance leverages Eucalyptus for its infrastructure and production quality open source technologies for its services.
"App Inventor makes it easy for anyone to create Android applications. With this cloud appliance, AppScale is removing the complications of deployment," said Marten Mickos, CEO of Eucalyptus Systems, in a prepared statement. "We are thrilled to participate in this innovative initiative which may revolutionize how mobile applications are developed and deployed."