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Cloud computing manifesto signatories disclosed, big firms absent

31 марта 2009

IBM on Monday disclosed the signatories to a coalition of companies backing "cloud computing" principles, but the names of some of the largest cloud companies were conspicuous by their absence.

The "open cloud manifesto" is a document aiming to set ground rules to make sure cloud computing, a growing market in which computer processing is handled at data centers and accessed by customers via the Internet, is kept accessible for customers.

But the manifesto's launch was overshadowed by squabbling among some of the largest companies about what's described as the unilateral way the document was drafted.

Signatories to the manifesto, which include International Business Machines Corp., Cisco Systems Inc. and Sun Microsystems Inc., set out their aspirations for cloud computing. Primarily, their concern is to make it as easy as possible for customers to change from one cloud computing provider to another without being "locked in" to a particular company's set of services.

However, several companies pushing cloud computing products and services, including Microsoft Corp., Google Inc., Salesforce.com Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. are conspicuously absent as signatories to the document.

Last week a Microsoft developer, Steven Martin, said in a blog post that the Redmond, Wash., software company was shown a copy of the manifesto at the last minute and asked to sign it without modifications or input. Amazon.com said it believed it was too early to set the ground rules for cloud computing.

A person familiar with the matter said that the prime mover in drafting the document was IBM and that the Armonk., N.Y., tech services company hadn't given some companies enough time to consider the document before responding. IBM declined to comment.

The brewing dispute between the camps could crimp adoption of cloud computing if potential customers, especially the big corporations whose data the cloud providers want to host, sense a standards war is in the offing. That, in turn, could disrupt what is widely seen as a potential driver of revenue growth for tech companies as they emerge from the recession.

Earlier this week, IT research firm Gartner forecast revenue from cloud services would grow 21.3% to $56.3 billion in 2009 and would reach $150 billion in 2013.

Analysts said it's currently not very easy to switch between the rival offerings of different cloud computing providers. The manifesto acknowledges this concern, saying the full benefits of cloud computing, including pay-per-usage pricing, could be hampered if cloud companies don't share information.

Источник: Total Telecom

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