IEEE Aims To Standardise Cloud Computing

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IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers), the world’s largest professional association advancing technology for humanity, has announced the launch of its new Cloud Computing Initiative. Designed to serve as the catalyst for innovation in the cloud computing arena, it is the first broad-scope, forward-looking cloud computing initiative to be put forth by a global standards development organization (SDO).

According to Steve Diamond, head of the IEEE Cloud Computing Initiative, “Cloud computing today is very much akin to the nascent Internet – a disruptive technology and business model that is primed for explosive growth and rapid transformation.”

However, he warns that “without a flexible, common framework for interoperability, innovation could become stifled, leaving us with a siloed ecosystem.” He said the aim of the IEEE’s cloud initiative was “to minimise fragmentation and ensure that cloud computing realises its full potential.”

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The IEEE has kicked of its cloud initiative with two new standards development projects: IEEE P2301, Draft Guide for Cloud Portability and Interoperability Profiles and IEEE P2302, Draft Standard for Intercloud Interoperability and Federation. Working groups have been set up to develop these standards.

IEEE P2301 will provide profiles of existing and in-progress cloud computing standards in critical areas such as application, portability, management, and interoperability interfaces, as well as file formats and operation conventions.

According to IEEE, “With capabilities logically grouped so that it addresses different cloud audiences and personalities, IEEE P2301 will provide an intuitive roadmap for cloud vendors, service providers and other key stakeholders. When completed, the standard will aid users in procuring, developing, building, and using standards-based cloud computing products and services, enabling better portability, increased commonality, and greater interoperability across the industry.”

IEEE P2302 defines essential topology, protocols, functionality, and governance required for reliable cloud-to-cloud interoperability and federation. The standard will help build an economy of scale among cloud product and service providers that remains transparent to users and applications. With a dynamic infrastructure that supports evolving cloud business models, IEEE P2302 is an ideal platform for fostering growth and improving competitiveness. It will also address fundamental, transparent interoperability and federation much in the way SS7/IN did for the global telephony system, and naming and routing protocols did for the Internet.

“Cloud computing will change everything. It is one of the three aspects of the ‘perfect storm’ of technology waves currently sweeping across humanity, the other two being massive deployment of very smart mobile devices, and ubiquitous high-speed connectivity,” said David Bernstein, IEEE P2301 and IEEE P2302 WG chair, and managing director, Cloud Strategy Partners. “The cloud will tie all of these coming advancements together. We’re truly embarking on a new age of innovation.”

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“IEEE is in a uniquely powerful position to impact and shape the face of the burgeoning cloud computing revolution. Driven by a membership dedicated to technology innovation, IEEE continues to set the pace and methodology for contemporary standards development,” said Judith Gorman, managing director, IEEE-SA. “These newest standards will not only follow the consensus-based process championed by IEEE, but will also leverage the latest in technology development best practices, such as live global test beds and open source references. Cloud computing will showcase our ability to deliver exceptional, universally relevant standards created with these leading edge methodologies.”

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