Dec 16
 Once the stockings are hung and the presents are wrapped, many children around the world will anxiously await a visit from Santa Clause. While we can guess his path from the North Pole, there is only one organization that knows exactly where Santa is on Christmas Eve: the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). For over 50 years, NORAD has tracked Santa’s location during his Christmas journey, and this year, it’s easier than ever to keep tabs on the big man.


Last week, NORAD launched the Santa Tracker, an online tool that lets you follow Santa in real-time from anywhere in the world. Built on the Windows Azure cloud computing platform, the tool lets kids monitor Santa’s sleigh ride on Bing Maps, and this year kids can even track him on their Windows mobile device – download Windows Phone and Windows 8 apps.
With more than 25 million users expected to track Santa on Christmas Eve this year, this is also a great example of cloud scalability.  The Microsoft cloud will scale to meet traffic demands on the big night, similarly to how government and public safety organizations need their cloud solutions to scale during times of heavy traffic, whether an online tax portal or a disaster recovery solution.    
To learn more about the NORAD Santa Tracker, I invite you to read the recent blog post from our friends at NORAD, CAPT (U.S. Navy) Jeff Davis Director, NORAD and U.S. Northern Command Public Affairs. And if you hear reindeer on your roof this Christmas Eve, be sure to check on Santa’s location before peeking in your chimney!
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Curt Kolcun, Vice President, U.S. Public Sector | 11 December 2012


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