Clarity on Cloud

Unravelling the definitions

Published/updated: May 2009

By Dale Vile

A senior exec from a major IT vendor recently commented in a Freeform Dynamics industry analyst briefing that it was amazing how cloud computing was touching pretty much every part of their business and portfolio. Our response - that this was not particularly surprising given that they had defined Ďcloudí in such a broad and fluffy manner - might sound a bit harsh, but it was true. In fact, over the course of a few hours, we heard numerous takes on what cloud computing means from this one vendor alone. If we were new to the space, we probably would have ended up quite confused.

It would be unfair to name this vendor and single them out, as jumping on the cloud bandwagon and defining what cloud means to fit with what you have to sell is common behaviour across the vendor community at the moment. The fact that cloud is, as we discussed previously, really just an umbrella term for a collection of evolutionary trends and developments, rather than some single specific revolutionary concept, actually encourages this and provides plenty of room for abuse.

So how do we make sense of everything that is said, claimed and offered about cloud?........

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