Open Standards Essential for Future Cloud Evolution: Intel

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The faster open, interoperable standards for Cloud computing are set, the faster organisations can manage the transition to the Cloud, according to Intel.

Speaking in Sydney following the global launch of its Open Data Center Alliance (ODC) and Cloud Builders initiatives, Intel general manager Asia Pacific and China, data centre products, Jason Fedder, said greater certainty around the future development of the Cloud was needed.

"From our perspective we don't have a particular view on which standards are the right standards for cloud computing but it is very clear that in order for the industry to deliver on the economic benefits that Cloud computing can offer the data centre operator, there needs to be interoperability and standards," he said.

"While you have a situation where you have competing vendors trying to drive from the vendor part of the supply chain, a set of standards around storage, and management and power saving, it becomes an inhibitor for end customers as they won't make a commitment to the technology until they know which standards are being enforced."

According to Fedder, standards were needed in particular around federating the Cloud to better manage security, the aggregation of content, and the 'on-boarding' of services and service delivery within private and public Clouds.

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As organisations moved toward "mega scale" data centres, such as those of Facebook and Google, which had "hundreds of thousands" of servers, standards on automation would be increasingly required, Fedder said.

Standards around making Cloud services 'client aware' so that the delivery of services was matched to the device, and the network, on which a service was being accessed were also required.

Detailing Intel's decision to launch the Open Data Center Alliance, Fedder said the chip builder was seeking to inject a "very strong voice of the customer" into the debate around shaping the future of the Cloud.

"If you look at the work we did around UB 2.0, or PCI, probably the best known example is the work were did around Wi-Fi... it was something that was perceived back in 2003, 2004 as very niche but when we put the capability into our chipset... we were able to move the industry to a point three years later where 95 per cent of PCs shipping with Wi-Fi onboard," he said.

"We believe if we bring together the right end customers then we can begin to create an aggregated voice of the customer which will be able to play a more active role in this industry debate that is going on right now."

While National Australia Bank is one of the 120 global end user voices in the ODC, along with Shell, BMW and UBS, Cloud giants Google and Amazon are notably absent.

"They are not there for two reasons: Google and Amazon are consumers of IT but they are also increasingly vendors." Fedder said. "The other reason is that they clearly have been first to market with developing some of the technologies around [the Cloud] and are in the basis of competing on their own unique intellectual property and take on [the Cloud].

"So, if we are trying to drive ... the voice of the customer and you have companies who are very much the leading lights in this space... then there is some question as to how they would support these standards."

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This story, "Open Standards Essential for Future Cloud Evolution: Intel" was originally published by Computerworld Australia.

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