Cloud computing has taken the IT industry by storm. Estimated at USD 24.6 billion in 2010, cloud computing has already surpassed USD 100 billion and is expected to reach USD 150 billion by the end of 2020.
Industry is adopting cloud computing and benefiting from the nearly instantaneous and positive impact of cloud technology. Eighty percent of companies report improvements to their operations within the first few months of adoption. Already, the average employee uses 36 cloud-based apps in their daily work.
Standards can help to provide confidence and guidance in a rapidly changing industry. To enable the standardization of cloud computing at the international level, the IEC and ISO joint technical committee on IT set up a subcommittee in this area: ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 38.
Defining cloud computing
Cloud computing is an enabling technology. It is based on the principles of shared devices, network access and shared data storage.
According to the Chair of ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 38, Steve Holbrook, cloud computing is the result of the “evolution of distributed computing over the last 60 years, ever since two computers could talk to each other, allowing us to go from the mainframe to the modern era. It is the latest and most efficient form of distributed computing”.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is also evolving and improving especially with machine learning which uses data to find patterns and trends. Cloud computing is an essential element as it provides the storage for the data and the distributed processing used for analysis.
According to Holbrook, AI is a “killer app that is lighting up cloud computing. It is illuminating an exciting horizon in technology. We need to enable technology that is smarter and more agile”.
Open Source innovations
Open source software is an area where much innovation is occurring within cloud computing. Holbrook noted, “the notion of containers is a new trend in cloud computing. The idea is that cloud services can be packaged and run in isolation in a platform independent way. Innovations like Kubernetes make it possible to manage workloads across multiple computers and teams”.
Standardization can be important for open source. As pointed out by Holbrook, “standardization is especially needed to establish well known interfaces between technologies. However, there is a mismatch between the speed and culture of the open source community and the standardization community. Much is linked to meta concerns, such as legal and privacy issues, which is not top of mind for programmers in consortia”.
Read the full interview with Steve Holbrook in e-tech.