was the clear message of panelists in the Road Ahead session – Working in the Cloud: the business factors, drivers and values of the cloud” on the opening day of NILF 2010. Stephanie Moore, CMO, UST Global and former Forrester analyst explained how the drivers for cloud computing were similar to those that drove outsourcing. She also gave examples of opportunities for service providers in the cloud space- managed services, integration & customization opportunities and aggregation. William Bauman of CA said that cloud computing was a disruptive trend akin to the internet and earlier distrivuted computing.
Other panelists including Partha Iyengar of Gartner and James Harrism Accenture emphasised the need for all organizations- buyers and service providers to start examining the implications of cloud computing on their own businesses.
The meassge was loud and clear- the cloud is here to stay – in a year, a lot has changed- last year at NILF, cloud computing was a concept- perhaps the recession had a role to play – at a time when capex was frozen and dollars were hard to come by, an idea that allowed companies to pay for use and almost elimnate capex would have been too attractive to ignore.
That said, there are some real challenges, including concerns over security and privacy that need to be addressed, and we are still seeing only the early signs of adoption.