Skyscrapers versus Clouds

image credit: Wendy
The last few days I spend at the Gluecon conference covering many aspects of cloud computing. It were inspiring two days and you can find many presentations on SlideShare.

I'm a great believer in cloud computing and we are currently on an inflection point were cloud computing is reaching mainstream adoption. Cloud computing does not only effect the way we deliver solutions to the market and their related business models, but requires a change of anything we do. Moving from a traditional software vendor into a cloud computing provider is almost a cultural change. To illustrate this I came with a little metaphor of Skyscrapers versus Cloud, both are reaching up in the sky, but very differently.

Traditional software vendors can be seen as skyscrapers, they have a good view on their surrounding, but with a limited reach. The building structure has a solid foundation, thick walls but isn't very movable and flexible. There is usually only one entrance with probably heaps of security representing a closed environment and when several companies want to collaborate there first need to be a lot of top floor board meetings with legal representation. The building has a fixed size a symbol for a limited number of customers, database sizes, etc. Everything needs to have a dimension.

Clouds on the other hand float around, they move into all kind of places, can start small and have the possibility to grow into unlimited size. When moving  around they might bump into another cloud, but the nature of the cloud makes this a soft bump and a natural merge of activities The cloud isn't closed, it's easy to enter and easy to get out. The laws of physics are different for a cloud, the laws of the game are changing.

When moving to the cloud, it's not about the technology, it's about the adoption of the new rules of the game. Be open, share your insights, think in unlimited resources, customer and no barriers. It's a new world and start to participate to become aware.

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