Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Cloud Computing - It's The Destination, Not The Journey

I have had some interesting conversations recently with partners about how cloud computing will affect the developer tools market.

I don't believe developers jump on a band wagon just because they like the wagon. They jump on the wagon because they like where the wagon is going!

Roughly every 10 years, a technology disruption changes developer aspirations and drives them to adopt new tools that get them to new places.

With client/server, developers aspired to build "modern" apps and break free of the bureaucracy of central IT. Cloud computing offers a similar, updated, value - deploy web applications without the hassle of central IT.

Developer aspirations are changing - this is the underlying market driver for WaveMaker.

At the same time, IT vendors are seeing their value disrupted. As the data center morphs into a set of APIs, decisions which used to be made by sys admins and DBAs are made by the developer (Cloud Foundry is a good example of this).

The developer platform is becoming the control panel for the data center - this is the WaveMaker's value to partners. This is also the basis for our cloud quick start program with IBM, Amazon and RightScale.

One company that has realized the competitive opportunity in cloud computing is Microsoft. By integrating Visual Studio with Azure, they have created a powerful engine from which to attack the entire data center infrastructure.

If business developers really do "take to the clouds", the challenge I see for IT infrastructure providers is how to harness changing developer aspirations to ensure that the cloud deployment stack includes their solutions.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You raise some interesting points. Cloud computing is making the future IT infrastructure of organizations become more developer-centric. As "central IT" becomes outsourced, focus will partially shift from hardware and third-party software maintenance and configuration to application development and deployment.

I do not believe, however, that this will be a complete shift. Cloud computing will replace a lot of IT infrastructure, but there are some applications and data storage cases that simply don't make sense to move into the cloud. The idea of a hybrid approach (software plus services) leverages the benefits of both. Given this, IT infrastructure providers will remain relevant even with wide cloud-adoption.

(I am contracted by M80, working with Microsoft to promote Windows Azure)