IBM Launches Cloud Computing Lab
November 2, 2010 Alex Woodie
IBM will help its business partners transition their on-premise software to cloud-based services at the new Cloud Computing Lab unveiled last week at the IBM facility in Hursley in southern England. IBM cloud computing experts and technology will be made available remotely–as a cloud service, essentially–by partners from any of the 38 IBM Innovation Centers around the world.
There is no shortage of statistics telling us how big cloud computing is going to be. For example, MarketResearch.com last week said that, in 2013, there will be $25 billion spent on cloud computing, including software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), and integration as a service (IaaS). The fastest growing segments of cloud computing are ERP, CRM, supply chain management (SCM), and content, communications, and collaboration (CCC), the company says.
Meanwhile, IBM has a much broader interpretation of the cloud market, which it pegs today as a $68-billion-per-year business, and predicts it will hit $150 billion by 2014. By 2015, cloud computing will become the dominant way that organizations acquire IT, according to IBM’s survey of 2000 developers. Still another survey (from IDC) pegs the cloud business as generating $55 billion in 2014.
Regardless of the accounting codes used to classify and tabulate cloud computing spending (grammatical note: please don’t call it “spend.” That’s what one does, which makes it a “verb.” The idea behind “spending” is properly accounted for in grammar as something we call a “noun.”), there is little doubt that the pendulum is swinging back strongly toward centralized computing.
IBM is reacting by re-positioning itself as a preeminent provider of cloud computing resources. That means setting up big data centers filled with racks of servers (mostly X64 servers to date) to host applications. But it also means reaching out to application developers and helping them adapt their applications for the peculiarities of cloud computing. Because without applications, a cloud doesn’t have anything to run.
Getting apps appears to be the main thrust behind the Cloud Computing Lab, which IBM says is the first of its kind. IBM is also making cloud integration experts from Cast Iron, which IBM recently acquired, available through the new Cloud Computing Lab.
IBM offers all kinds of other cloud services to its partners, including development and testing tools, and certification. For more information, see http://www.ibm.com/ibm/cloud/.