In the past, companies wishing to increase their speed and capacity for actuarial projections were compelled to invest heavily in their computing infrastructures. To build grid computing environments, they had to purchase large numbers of computers or servers, sometimes hundreds, to meet their ever-increasing computing needs. Recently, outsourced grid computing, also known as cloud computing, has arisen as an alternative that can potentially reduce costs and offer more computing capacity than a company would be able to support internally.
The "cloud" is a metaphor for the Internet, based on its depiction in computer network diagrams. It incorporates software as a service (SaaS), Web 2.0, and other recent technology to allow users to access services from the Internet without having to build or maintain the infrastructure that supports them.
Firms that want to take advantage of the opportunity that cloud computing presents, must have actuarial projection software that is fully grid-enabled using contemporary grid-computing software.
Milliman's MG-ALFA® is fully integrated with Microsoft Windows HPC, the grid-computing platform used by most cloud computing vendors.
As companies prepare for principles-based reserves and capital and nested stochastic modeling, cloud computing offers a solution that works well in a variety of situations:
- For companies that prefer to meet all of their grid-computing needs through outsourcing rather than invest in computing infrastructure
- For companies that already have their own grids but that would occasionally like to use cloud computing for access to additional calculation speed and capacity
- For companies building in-house grids that wish to manage their internal investment in hardware and infrastructure by using cloud computing for increased peak-period capacity
Because MG-ALFA comes grid-enabled and ready to run on the cloud, using the system on the cloud is a simple, straightforward process. Not only does Milliman have the resources and expertise to help companies meet their computing capacity needs, but the ease of implementation and deployment from an IT perspective is also one of the most appealing aspects of our cloud computing solution.