How Sonian embodies the five cloud superpowers


How Sonian embodies the five cloud superpowers by Greg Arnette

For six years, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has held their customer-centric conference in Las Vegas. The previous keynotes by AWS CEO Andy Jassy have used a narrative theme to weave together different elements to tell a “modern cloud story.” Last year, the theme was the “Seven Cloud Freedoms” and this year it was the “Five Cloud Superpowers.” I love the idea of cloud superpowers that give teams the ability to “leap over petabytes with a single cluster.”

Watching the 2016 main stage re:Invent keynote got me reminiscing about Sonian and why we chose the cloud instead of building our own data center. In late 2006, I started working on the technology and concepts that became Sonian. The company wasn’t officially incorporated until 2007 (which means 2017 will be our official 10 year anniversary… yeah! More on that later).

Reflecting on our history, Sonian embodies the five cloud superpowers in these ways:

Supersonic speed
Sonian has used “cloud speed” from the earliest days to the present. Back in 2007, it took us a little less than a year to go from concept-on-a-napkin to first shipping version — all thanks to cloud supersonic speed. That’s because we were not distracted with physical infrastructure.

More recently, we launched a new data ingestion pipeline process in record time — all thanks to cloud supersonic speed.

Sonian and our partners and customers all benefit from this amazing superpower.

X-ray vision
In a sense, the Sonian mission is all about the concept of x-raying data, giving customers x-ray vision into their own collaboration data. Our email data preservation and compliance platform indexes electronic records, makes them searchable and identifies security risks. Sonian also uses software tools to x-ray our own operational data, looking for areas to improve performance, reduce costs and increase security.

Data “immortality” is important to Sonian customers. They trust us, and the underlying cloud infrastructure, to preserve and protect their most valuable data assets. In typical “archive fashion,” we’re the only copy of the data, so trust and durability are key and give the quality of data immortality.

One of the more popular cloud usage patterns is rapid experimentation and serendipitous discovery. For many enterprises, taking flight to the cloud is to support research and development experiments.  “Go fast” is the motto because abundant infrastructure is available on-demand.

Sonian benefited from the “flight” superpower with the early lab work for our security insights features. This was an example of rapid iterations and taking advantage of cloud flexibility.

The best cloud superpower is the ability to morph from one architecture pattern to another. What this means to Sonain is the ability to shapeshift our core architecture over time to meet growth demands. Every SaaS app goes through technology platform growth and plateau stages. During growth mode, shapeshifting is needed to take advantage of new technologies (like containers or map reduce) or new paradigm shifts (like serverless). The cloud almost requires morphing to ensure costs are low and reliability remains high.

It’s fun to think about superpowers available on-demand. For Sonian, and many other companies embracing the cloud, that’s what it’s really all about: speed, introspection, durability and adaptability.

— Greg Arnette is the founder and CTO of Sonian. Follow Greg on Twitter for more information about email, collaboration, big data management, cloud computing, start-ups and more.

About Sonian
Sonian preserves, protects and presents the world’s information.

More than 25,000 customers in 43 countries trust Sonian’s secure proprietary platform to retain, retrieve and surface critical data and protect intellectual property.

Founded in 2007, Sonian is the only pure public cloud information archiving company, providing services that are easy, flexible, actionable and reliable for OEM partners and their end customers. Sonian allows companies to preserve, analyze and access their electronic communications for legal, regulatory and continuity purposes while gaining organizational insights.

Sonian is building the future and solving big data problems for companies, all while managing more than 20 billion objects in the cloud.

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