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Above the Clouds: The View from Berkeley

posted on 03 Aug 2009 RAD Lab released Above the Clouds: The View from Berkeley (pdf) an high-level overview of the cloud. It's great read for anyone interested in the subject, no need to be involved in software development.

It's the best text on the subject that I've read so far: the authors start and stay above the cloud, avoid stepping on technical traps, yet they never become too theoretical.

The paper will tell you what the cloud is and what is not, how it fits in today's IT ecology. It also describes the "economics of the cloud" with no-nonsense formulas and pragmatic statements, making sensible assumptions and predictions.

If anything, I think it underestimates the impact of private clouds for small and medium organizations in the future. Designing your data center as cloud buys you a greater potential for scalability and flexibility.

Add that even a tiny company benefits from exposing its data layer as a service with domain specific logic (that is, a SaaS with an API), and that couples perfectly with a cloud architecture.

This is straightforward only for new organizations; a massive paradgim switch in an existing company could well kill it...
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