Kirk Kern

The ability to store massive quantities of data in the cloud with relatively little expense has created a whole new set of problems for government agencies.  A few years ago agencies struggled with storage costs, but the tremendous innovation in cloud based storage has effectively created a cloud storage commodity market in which government agencies act as efficiently as seasoned Wall Street traders buying and selling space based on price as projects demand.

Recently, TechSource sat down with Kirk Kern, NetApp’s CTO of Cloud Technologies to talk about what areas government CIOs and CTOs should be focusing on now that their data is securely stored.   From what he’s gleaned from talking with agency IT leads is that the next big data challenge is to liberate the very data that has just been stored so that it can be processed, manipulated, and applied in the pursuit of key missions and the more efficient delivery of services to citizens.

Below is a brief excerpt of what Kirk discussed with the TechSource editors.  To read his entire interview and to learn more about the solutions he proposes to meet the data challenge hop on over to TechSource here…


TechSource: Let’s start at a high-level. Tell us about why the right data mining solutions are so important to government agencies.

Kern: If you look back over the past five years, we have seen a data evolution, which has spanned everything from grid computing to big data to now the cloud for storing and processing information. Along with this, there are three information management principles of data mining, which are data creation, protection and intelligence generation. From capturing the information to protecting it to developing actionable insights from it, each principle has its own consumption model and associated software service. This is why federal agencies need the right solutions to meet the needs of these three principles.


TechSource: Will the “massive data proliferation” trend in government continue into the future?

Kern: Clearly, the federal government continues to deploy more and more assets that play a major role in the proliferation of data. In addition, if you look at the soon-to-be-rise of the “Internet of Things,” virtually everything will become a sensor with every device having a point of presence on the Internet. With all of these changes, the government will continue to need to mine this data in ways that turn the information into actionable intelligence that can improve our lives or make our government programs more useful. It’s hard to predict what kind of intelligence can be pulled from these data sources, but it is clear that the data deluge will continue and that this will be an ongoing challenge.

To continue reading click here…