2011 Predictions for Cloud Computing

Simon Wardley, Researcher, CSC Leading Edge Forum

Simon Wardley, a researcher with CSC’s Leading Edge Forum, has issued today his 2011 predictions for Cloud Computing:

  • Platform as a service will overtake Infrastructure as a service as the main buzz of cloud computing.
  • Customer adoption rates of cloud computing will outstrip most analyst predictions.
  • Cost efficiency arguments around cloud computing will increasingly be replaced with innovation successes.
  • Conventional wisdom shifts and open source architectures dominate cloud computing.
  • Enterprise IT increasingly focuses on new value creation, architecture and vendor management as cloud computing grows.
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2 Responses to 2011 Predictions for Cloud Computing

  1. You are right ! Infrastructure cannot be served as a service, as it is a authority cost nobody wants to share. Platform can always be shared. Customer adoption rates to cloud will also grow beyond expectations. I would say the demand will blow up all other markets, because, customers are savvy now to invest in low cost anywhere access solutions. Customers now know which data to be put on cloud and use as anywhere access and which not ! I agree to the third point also but not the 4th. Open source architecture will never dominate cloud computing, due to globalization and more efficient private clouds coming in. Open source cannot pass the flexibility of private clouds to customers. So open source will remain open source and the second best solution. I agree to your last point as well.

  2. Thank you for the kind comment, that’s much appreciated. For more information you can review one of my recent presentations, “Situation Normal, Everything Must Change” : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Oyf4vvJyy4.

    Additionally, in response to your comment, I would simply add:

    1. Infrastructure is not only provided as a utility service today this will continue to rapidly grow however this doesn’t mean all infrastructure will head in this direction, there are niche specialised areas but they are niche.

    2. Consumers can, and do, use hybrid solutions to balance benefits and risks particularly when it comes to issues of data governance. However, care must be taken to realise that a private on premise cloud is unlikely to be anywhere near as cost efficient as a large public utility and hence there is a cost associated with its use. Furthermore, unfortunately whilst virtualisation is an enabling technology for cloud it is often confused with cloud and hence many private clouds are usually little more than virtual data centres. These VDCs often lack the rigorous focus on volume operations / commodity provision i.e. they tend to be designed for purpose, highly configurable, highly resilient machines often supporting legacy architectural models such as N+1 & vertical scaling rather than cloud environments which are solely focused on volume operations, provision of standard units through massive numbers of low cost and good enough components hence supporting modern architectural models such as design for failure and horizontal scaling. The extremes of VDC and Cloud cover entirely different economic models.

    3. Componentisation effects are likely to mean the platform develops as the main focus for innovation of new activities.

    4. Open source is an essential requirement for a marketplace of providers which is free from constraint and operating on a basis of price vs quality of service competition. Given end user concerns over lock-in, second sourcing and portability and the focus of organisations like NASA, Rackspace, Dell, Citrix, AMD in the openstack effort, it’s likely that this concept will gain rapid adoption.

    Hope that helps.


    Simon Wardley,


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