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Monday
Sep082008

Cloud Parsing

More clarity (and practicality) is emerging in the conversation regarding cloud computing. Joe Weinman's response to my previous post goes straight to the heart of it: there are reasons why the pure, platonic form of cloud computing just won't satisfy the requirements or live within the constraints placed on corporate production computing.

Dan Woods has a very good article this morning at Forbes.com in which he identifies three issues that will bring complexity to the cloud-based solutions. He identifies them as (1) governments, (2) network topology and (3) quality of service.

With all respect to his choices, I'd probably use different terminology when laying out the issues for a geekier audience. (The column IS entitled JargonSpy !!)

(1) government regulation regarding the jurisdiction in which certain kinds of data must remain is a big issue. But there are a whole slew of industry standards (such as PCI DSS) and just "best practices" that recommend keeping close watch on where data lives and where it's processed. Compliance with regulation, industry standard or corporate best practice is a more inclusive concept.

(2) the network topology issue is really about latency rather than speed. (See Weinman's Cloudonomics Rule #8)

(3) quality of service is a loaded term for those of us with networking backgrounds. Woods' use of the term makes sense to the general readership. In fact, it's an amalgam of service properties that seem to rest primarily on reliability, availability, performance and security. Thrown in for good measure, we need to consider connectivity and resilience of the cloud.

This article is heartwarming, in that it starts to add some texture and the appropriate measure of sophistication into the thinking around cloud computing. Thanks, Dan.

(Thanks to OnSaas for pointing out the article.)

Parsing The Cloud - Forbes.com

Cloud computing is a rich vein of semantic ore for the JargonSpy because so much that is said about the cloud makes it all seem so simple. Most of the time, the story goes like this: We have an application like Salesforce.com or Google Apps, or an application programming interface to a service like Amazon.com's EC2 or S3, and we ask it to do stuff for us. Then, out there in the cloud, it all happens. We don't have to worry about what happens in the cloud, and we do not really care where it is, who else has their stuff there or how it all works.

The days of not caring are quickly coming to an end. The cloud as an abstract entity in a place you don't have to worry about will be replaced by clouds that have geographies, special purposes, other companies and rules that guarantee compliance with regulations. This week JargonSpy takes a look at how and why the cloud will transform from the simple to the complex. ...

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