|By Treff LaPlante||
|August 29, 2009 05:15 AM EDT||
Too often, discussions about "cloud computing" are met with skepticism and inside jokes that it is more about marketing than it is about delivering real value. In his excellent analysis of why Cloud Computing is disruptive, Ric Telford over at IBM disagree's. He talks about a number of key factors that create a disruptive technology, which he defines as the ability to rapidly displace existing technologies. He mentions things like ease of use, empowerment and efficiency. He alludes to dramatic productivity gains and cost reductions, and he uses real examples.
I am particularly a fan of the "empowerment" aspect. I think the power of empowerment can't be fully understood or understated. My uneducated feeling is that much of the economic gains of the 90's had to do with productivity increase that resulted from the rise of the PC and common tools like word processors and spreadsheets - what used to require a secretarial staff and data entry department is now done by an administrator and an executive - and any time you introduce such massive gains you create new worlds of opportunity, and the cycle is self fulfilling.
Although he tends to focus on infrastructure, Ric's analysis is heavily supported by developments in Platform as a Service as well, which is one of three segments of the cloud computing trend. With Platform as a Service, the customer doesn't need to understand anything about systems, administration, provisioning or installation of IDE's. With 5th Generation Language (5GL) PaaS, the user doesn't even need to know how to write code.
So imagine that...someone without formal training, using "the cloud", can create a custom application without any real knowledge of the technology behind it, for his or her business operation, at a fraction of the time and cost of previous alternatives. Isn't that disruptive?
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