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Boring Cloud Could Be a Good Thing

As The Year Ends, What's Going On?

Much of my writing on cloud computing over the past couple of years has been in near-panic mode. The US economy refused to bounce back, it seemed millions of jobs were lost forever, and the US seemed to be at the start of a long decline into obscurity.

Then hey, the United States might become the world's largest oil producer in a few years! It might even be self-sufficient! This revelation alone should give the Obama administration some long-term breathing room and prod Congress to be a little more cooperative, on both sides of the aisle. Maybe not all hope is lost.

So perhaps we can now pause for a bit. Holiday season upon us, only a few weeks left in the year, and no time for radical transformation of enterprise IT or anything else. This year's Cloud Expo in Silicon Valley has come and gone, with nothing truly earthshaking to report.

What's going on? Well, OpenStack has gained steam, Cloudability says it can precisely monitor your Amazon AWS usage, Amazon itself has opened a new cloud center in Australia, and the US Dept. of Veterans Affairs is moving forward with Office 365 e-mail (delivered through HP Enterprise Services) for an initial 15,000 employees as part of the government's Cloud First effort.

How Fast?
Cloud seems to be growing slowly, here and there, and is maybe in a bit of a boring stage right now. Boring can be good; it can signal stability. Cloud growth is hard to measure, as it's hard to measure something you can't define.

Holding that thought, Big Data was the big byword last year and this year, but the difficulty in defining it and complexity in deploying it is going to take many years. We're still at the point of asking, "What does Big Data mean for you?"

Internet traffic is predicted to continue to grow rapidly, thereby putting more pressure on big datacenter operators to go green and to be cloudy.

For 2013, I expect to see continued growth for VMware and on-site virtualization. But I also expect to see the red herrings of security and sovereignty start to disappear as companies become more at east with devoting some of their IT to public cloud.

Should be great news for Rackspace, and perhaps Amazon, if the latter can stop those pesky outages. I'm still looking for my spigot, but I think we're getting closer every year. Moore's Law will continue to work its magic, and prices will become ever more attractive and delivery ever less granular.

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Roger Strukhoff is Executive Director of the Tau Institute for Global IoT Research, (@IoT2040), with offices in Illinois and Manila. He is Conference Chair of @CloudExpo & @ThingsExpo. He is also Editor of SYS-CON Media's Cloud Computing Journal & IoT Journal & & writes for Computerworld Philippines. He has a BA from Knox College, Technical Writing Certificate from UC-Berkeley, and conducted MBA studies at CSU-East Bay.