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Open Cloud Manifesto

Lock-in bad, openness good for cloud

This past Friday, I posted a Manifesto on “the” Manifesto (those of you who know me and read my posts or follow me on Twitter know which manifesto I’m talking about; if you don’t, you can read it here).

Yesterday the Open Cloud Manifesto was *officially* made public. We think it represents a great opportunity for the industry and we’re proud to support it.

The making of the manifesto (a made-for-DVD extra if there ever was one) generated a lot of discussion.  Good. As an industry we should be talking. Together, we’re at the very heart of where the IT industry is heading. We’re building the foundation for the future of IT (yes, that sounds a bit over the top, but I do believe that the cloud — in its many forms — will drive computing for many years to come).

Yes, we are going to compete…and compete aggressively. But history has shown that customers win when competition is conducted on a level playing field — a field based on openness and industry standards. We’ve seen it with the Internet.  We’re seeing it again with cloud computing.

I encourage you to read the manifesto and engage in the discussion to make it stronger. If you are a member of the cloud community, it is your responsibility to do what you can to improve it (the Manifesto and the community) for all. If you are a customer working with a cloud computing vendor, ask your them if they support the principles undergirding the manifesto, if not the Manifesto itself.


You had me at “Open” — The Open Cloud Manifesto Manifesto

jerrymaguiremoney Yesterday, the Cloud Computing Interoperability Forum (CCIF) was forced to pre-announce the Monday launch of a (now) widely-anticipated Cloud Computing Manifesto — a call to action for the worldwide cloud community to get involved and embrace the principles of an open cloud.  The pre-announcement was precipitated by a blog post by Microsoft Azure product manager Steve Martin, who voiced his disapproval at the way the Manifesto was being developed.

As you can imagine, there’s a sordid back story. You can some of the background and as well as dive into the still-raging discussion on the CCIF Mailing List on Google Groups. Rather than get into the antics, I think it’s important to look at what is really at issue here, and what needs to happen once the CCIF releases the Manifesto to the wild on Monday.

If you’re a regular here, you know that I’m biased. I am a co-founder of CloudCamp and the CCIF and have worked hard along with Reuven Cohen, Dave Nielsen, Jesse Silver and Sara Dornsife to get these organizations off the ground and make them successful. In addition, my company Appistry has been a staunch supporter of these efforts in word, deeds and dollars.

You’ve Got to Start Somewhere

At the heart of this issue seems to be the idea that, in order to be “valid,” and to advance the dialogue in the community, the Manifesto must be developed from the ground up in a public forum. I disagree with this.

Don’t get me wrong. I am in whole hearted agreement with the open process that is being called for, as I think all of us at CCIF are. But what I think is missing from the dialogue is simply the fact that “you’ve got to start somewhere.”

From the beginning the Open Cloud Manifesto was meant to simply be that starting place. Something solid and tangible for the community to respond to.

To me, it’s equivalent to how the open source community has successfully worked for years: someone gets an itch, scratches it themselves (or with the help of a few others), and then turns it over to the community. That’s what’s happening here.

Pushing the Ball Forward

So what needs to happen now? As of this moment, the so-called “secret” manifesto is now public. It is now in the hands of the community. We’ve seen initial “throw the baby out with the bath water” reactions, but I think we can do better as a community.

So now I’m pleased to announce my own Manifesto, the Open Cloud Manifesto Manifesto:

  • Read it before you judge it
  • Fix it once you’ve read it
  • Keep pushing forward

The industry needs this.  Someone had to take the lead and it just so happens that — this time — it was Ruv and the CCIF that did it. 

The fact is, it’s out there now and this is the time for the community to make it better. Our customers don’t care about how the sausage is made.  They just want some good tasting Jimmy Dean (or Morningstar for vegetarians like me).

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