The future federated cloud… how OpenStack is enabling next-generation scientific and humanitarian computing.

Short Form


Christopher will take a closer look at the future of federated cloud and what that means for cloud computing and humanitarian efforts


In recent years, scores of international development projects have emerged that rely heavily on data analytics to support scientific, economic, and humanitarian efforts. Whether developed privately or in public-private partnership with aid organizations and governments, they often start from a common idea and scope. Yet despite tackling similar problems and possessing similar values, ideas and information, these projects do not typically share code, data, infrastructure, or architecture. As OpenStack develops and matures, it is driving increased interest into federated computation pools to support on-going research.

OpenStack is being used to save lives by enabling disaster risk reduction, climatology research, and natural disaster modelling for organizations such as the Australia-Indonesia Facility for Disaster Reduction (AIFDR), the USDA Soil Erosion Project, and NASA SERVIR. The University of Melbourne is leading the National eResearch Collaboration Tools and Resources (NeCTAR) project to develop collaborative scientific computing infrastructure to enable virtualized research laboratories across Australia. It is also being used at the European Center for Nuclear Research (CERN) to enable research with data from the Large Hadron Collider.

Speaking experience

Christopher has spoken at the Boston OpenStack Conference and at Cloud VTS on the subject of “Securing the Cloud: From the Data Center to the Network & Beyond”. Christopher will be speaking at Cloud Expo East 2012.


  • Chris1

    Christopher MacGown

    Co-Founder and CTO of Piston Cloud


    Prior to co-founding Piston Cloud Computing, Christopher was an early employee of Slicehost before its acquisition by Rackspace in 2008. From there he became a team lead in the development of Cloud Servers Windows. Christopher is an originating member of OpenStack’s Nova-core development team. Recent projects include serving as senior engineer on the Global Earthquake Model project, driving the development of a highly scalable earthquake modeling engine. In his spare time Christopher enjoys playing the ukulele, drawing and reading 16th and 17th century philosophy.