By annie shum | October 21, 2009
Cloud computing isn’t going to be vapor much longer, Gartner said Tuesday.
The general idea–shared computing services accessible over the Internet that can expand or contract on demand–topped Gartner’s list of the 10 top technologies that information technology personnel need to plan for. It’s complicated, poses security risks, and computing technology companies are latching onto the buzzword in droves, but the phenomenon should be taken seriously, said analyst Dave Cearley here at the Gartner Symposium.
Specifically, companies should figure out what cloud services might give them value, how to write applications that run on cloud services, and whether they should build their own private clouds that use Internet-style networking technology within a company’s firewall. Cloud computing takes several forms, from the nuts and bolts of Amazon Web Services to the more finished foundation of Google App Engine to the full-on application of Salesforce.com. Companies should figure out what if any of those approaches are most suited to their challenges, Gartner said.
The advice came as part of a talk on top trends coming in 2010 that companies should incorporate into their strategic planning, if not necessarily their own computer systems. The full list of 10: 1. cloud computing; 2. advanced analytics; 3. client computing; 4. IT for green; 5. reshaping the data center; 6. social computing; 7. security–activity monitoring; 8. flash memory; 9. virtualization for availability; and 10. mobile applications.
Second on the list is virtualization–not just in the broad sense of technology that lets a single computer run multiple operating systems simultaneously, where it’s become a fixture in data centers, but as a means to keep computing services up and running despite computer failures, said analyst Carl Claunch. Virtual machines can be moved from one physical machine to another today. Later, by keeping two machines tightly synchronized, a failure in a primary machine can be eased over rapidly by moving the active service to the backup machine, Claunch said. “We should start seeing this roll out in the next year or two from vendors,” he said.
by Stephen Shankland