When the Open Cloud Manifesto was unveiled last week by IBM et al I wrote "The (Cloud) Bastards say, Welcome"
And I invited several cloud pioneers who have been at it - delivering cloud based products and services or helping evaluate and nurture them for 5, 7, 10 years - to discuss the manifesto and what they have learned in Cloud Computing over the last few years.
The series starts with Marc Benioff of salesforce.com, the ultimate Cloud Pioneer, who has this to say:
"We have no major issue with the goals laid out in the Open Cloud Manifesto. We completely support the idea of interoperability. Just look at the work that we have done with Google's App Engine, Amazon's Web Services, and Facebook, to name a few. The new world of cloud platforms is built around open web standards, and those of us who have been in the forefront of building the clouds and connecting them know that interoperability is an imperative for this new era of computing that we are entering.
We believe that there will indeed be specialized clouds. That's happening now. For example, Amazon Web Services has proved to be a popular home for consumer-facing web applications, including many independent apps running on Facebook. Google App Engine has proved popular with Python developers. Our Force.com is geared towards the needs of the enterprise. Over time, we believe there will be even more specialized clouds as well. This seems to be a natural progression of the industry.
But unlike client-server application development platforms that are Internet-aware or Internet-ready, cloud platforms have interoperability in their DNA. My impression from talking to other leaders like Eric Schmidt and Jeff Bezos is that we have a shared belief that this interoperability is something that the community demands, and the utility of cloud platforms depends on it. Back in November, we announced Force.com for Amazon Web Services, which allows developers the ability to call AWS natively from Force.com. Best of all for developers, you can access not only your data on our service through an API, but also your metadata.
In the cloud computing era, I can't decree "build apps this way." But what I can do is work with some very smart people at my company and more importantly, with customers and developers in the community at large, to prove concepts and offer tools and resources. The community is determining the standards, and that discussion is far more compelling than anything produced by a single vendor-- or even a group of vendors. That said, I think the manifesto has stirred the pot a bit, and that's a good thing.
And that's really the point. The most powerful manifestos are coming from customers and developers. We're listening, learning, and delivering the services that customers and developers are asking for. But we are just getting started. So are Google, Amazon and Facebook. We look forward to working with the signatories of the Open Cloud Manifesto, and helping them keep an eye on where the clicks and code are taking the industry."