The National Science Foundation has set aside $32 million for universities on the cutting edge of research for the future internet—a future that does certainly appear to include cloud computing, particularly given the reliance of the mobile web on cloud-based applications.
The NSF Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering recently announced a few of the grant recipients, including projects based out of the San Diego Supercomputer Center and the University of Pennsylvania, among others. The project range from those concerned specifically with security (like the eXpressive Internet Architecture project), to mobile computing, such as the MobilityFirst project, which is a collaboration between researchers at nine universities and a handful of industry partners that seeks to find ways to improve the use of the internet on mobile devices.
Of note is a project led by Jonathan Smith from the University of Pennsylvania and Cisco researchers called “Nebula” (even though that name is already “taken” by NASA) that seeks to examine issues of security and trust in the global cloud with a distinct eye on privacy. As Smith told Network World, “Security and privacy are major challenges for the emerging cloud computing model, and Nebula research will address security challenges in the network with new approaches to reliability, availability, confidentiality and other system properties.”
The NSF is seeing clear value in the cloud and its use on mobile devices in this round of grant-handing, just as Europe has been making similar efforts to expand cloud research with its newly announced EU-funded BonFIRE project, aimed at cloud computing research specifically.