For our existing GRIDtoday readers, welcome to the new publication. For readers discovering this publication for the first time, welcome to you, as well.
As a housekeeping note right off the bat, I want to alert you that instead of publishing a weekly issue, we will be updating the On-Demand Enterprise site with features, news, blogs, polls, etc., throughout the week, and subscribers will receive a newsletter highlighting the week’s new content on Fridays. In addition, RSS links are posted near the bottom of the home page, so you can get your content via that medium, as well.
Now, I promise this publication is not all about cloud computing, but it’s just too interesting, too hyped and too in the news not to play a relatively big role for the foreseeable future. Take, for example, Gartner’s latest Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, which places cloud computing on the Technology Trigger zone, rapidly approaching the Peak of Inflated Expectations. Gartner predicts cloud computing will experience mainstream adoption in two to five years. My thoughts: we’ll see.
There is no question that some companies already are using cloud services in production, and optimists like myself believe the benefits already outweigh the risks, but enterprises don’t take a laissez faire approach to IT. Most companies still aren’t too comfortable running production apps on VMs, much less running them literally virtually, on someone else’s boxes. If by “mainstream adoption” Gartner means that cloud computing will be widely used for testing and development purposes, then two to five years might not be so out there, but mission-critical apps are another question. Internal clouds might also have achieved widespread adoption within this time frame, as major firms already are singing their praises.
Of course, one thing that should help adoption is persistent storage in the cloud – at least on EC2. Enomaly CTO Reuven Cohen recently shared on his blog an e-mail he received from Amazon indicating that the long-awaited feature finally will make its debut. The storage volumes will be associated with the user account, as opposed to with a particular instance, and, like a traditional file system, will allow users low-latency access to the data, as well as the ability to host a relational database. To the extent enterprise users see the cloud as offering the same features they can get in-house, the more likely they are to adopt. If Amazon’s persistent storage volumes prove reliable, they could help that two to five year prediction come to fruition. Amazon describes the offering in more detail here.
That’s it for now, but I’ll be posting several times a week as the spirit moves me. We also will be looking to grow our blog ecosystem in the months to come to include more authors and more points of view. At the very least, it will be an interesting process.