AWS Summit online keynote: Let's get back to the fundamentals

Amazon CTO Werner Vogels emphasized how a strong technological foundation can support the world's new way of work.

aws.jpg

Amazon CTO Werner Vogels during the keynote address as the Amazon Summit online 2020. 

Image: Screenshot

Seated at a desk in his Amsterdam home, Amazon CTO Werner Vogels kicked off the virtual AWS Summit--US & Canada. Typically held at multiple locations around the world, the global conference was another tech event forced online due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. 

During the AWS Summit online keynote on Wednesday, Vogels highlighted the importance of fundamental technologies during this unprecedented time. A technology he emphasized in particular was the cloud

SEE: AWS Summit Online highlights (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

"Creating technology solutions is a lot like constructing a physical building: You need a solid foundation," Vogels said. "If the foundation is not solid, it will cause structural problems that undermine the integrity and function of the building in the long term.

"In the light of current events, you could argue it's more important than ever to rapidly build solutions and respond to changes around us," Vogels said. "You have to focus on these fundamental concepts in order to build stable, secure, efficient systems." 

As AWS created and developed its cloud services over the past 14 years, Vogels said the company learned along the way how important it is to have a secure and reliable system that can easily scale up or down, especially during unforeseen disruptions or large footprint increases. 

Vogels said that Amazon created its assets to "help everyone build, deploy, operate virtually anything at any scale." Some of these services include Amazon S3, DynamoDB, Lambda, the Amazon Builders Library, and the Well-Architected Framework, he added.

SEE: Coronavirus: Critical IT policies and tools every business needs (TechRepublic Premium)

"It's important that customers use this time to go back to fundamentals and use frameworks like these," Vogels said. "As an organization, maybe it's time to go in and optimize that system you never had time to get to. Or as an individual, this can be the opportunity to go out and learn some new skills." 

How the business landscape is changing

Fundamentals are not only necessary for a strong foundation, they are also necessary for innovation, according to Vogels. 

COVID-19 has forced individuals and businesses around the world to shift both mindsets and functionalities. 

"More people than ever working from home are limited to doing indoor activities. This means utilizing digital technologies and consuming more internet services than ever before," Vogels said. "In turn, the necessity for many of our customers to scale to meet these demands is also at an all time high."    

The cloud is intrinsic to our new way of work, and AWS aims to help any industry and person be successful with the cloud, Vogels said. 

"Regardless of the field of work or specialized skills, what brings us together is that our teams and our cultures are charging to teach the same goal: To produce and deliver amazing results," he said. 
 
"If nothing else, these past few months have truly ushered in a new era in technology, where we are seeing a fundamental shift in how everyone is feeling, not only the technology itself but how to access that technology, as well as how we built the technology," Vogels said. 

Moving through 2020 and into the future, Vogels said he believes most organizations will be shifting toward a cloud-based infrastructure. 

SEE: Power checklist: Local email server-to-cloud migration (TechRepublic Premium)

Telemedicine gaining ground 

Vogels provided multiple examples of partners that are making swift changes during the coronavirus. One area in particular he emphasized was telemedicine

"I continue to be inspired by how I've seen our customers pivot in response to the recent events in the world and how they've used technology to solve human problems," Vogels said. "Companies are taking on challenges to improve processes and make things easier, faster, and safer for communities around the world."

One healthcare platform, KRY, created Care Connect in Europe. The tool provides a secure, reliable, scalable service for healthcare professionals to conduct video appointments with patients, Vogels said.  

"We've seen increased amounts for video appointments given current times. KRY's platform offers a way for doctors to continue the consultations over video so that patients can maintain access to vital healthcare services," Vogels said. "The Care Connect platform runs on top of AWS using Amazon S3, Cloudfront, Amazon ECS, AWSFargate, and Amazon Aurora." 

This scaling compute allows medical professionals to increase the number of patients, while still being able to safely provide consultations," Vogels said. 

The KRY team was able to launch the platform, at scale, in only a week and half, proving how efficient and valuable cloud can be, Vogels added. 

Many companies have been using cloud for years, and some are just beginning. What is proven, however is that with cloud "companies and people in all corners of the globe are solving hard, human problems," Vogels said. 

For more, check out Cloud computing: This new tool from AWS could make life easier for developers on TechRepublic. 

Also see