Open Cloud Manifesto: Blighted From Birth?

Darryl K. Taft covers IBM, big data and a number of other topics for TechWeekEurope and eWeek

Is the Open Coud Manifesto doomed even as it is officially announced? The top three cloud platforms have backed off, and the group faces stern criticism from the outsiders

The Open Cloud Manifesto’s launch was severely hampered. The top three cloud platforms decided not to participate, and it was left to IBM, Sun, Cisco and a host of smaller companies to launch it today. Some say Cisco’s support may be iffy.

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But with Microsoft, Amazon and Google absent, doubts are raised about the manifesto group’s ability to speak for cloud computing. And Salesforce.com, a cloud champion in its own right, is also absent from the manifesto’s published supporters list.

Google’s absence was reported on GigaOm on 27 March, byStacey Higginbotham:

“Spokesman Jon Murchinson emailed me to say, “While we are not a party to the manifesto, Google is a strong advocate of cloud computing, given the substantial benefits for consumers and businesses. We value industry dialog that results in more and better delivery of software and services via the Internet, and appreciate IBM’s leadership and commitment in this area. We continue to be open to interoperability with all vendors and any data.”

Meanwhile, Reuven Cohen, founder and chief technologist of Enomaly, who has taken credit for helping to author the manifesto, said in a 29 March blog post that the Cloud Computing Interoperability Forum (CCIF) will not be a signatory of the document.

Cohen, who has identified himself as a “CCIF instigator,” said:

“To this end, when the Open Cloud Manifesto is officially released on Monday, March 30, the CCIF’s name will not appear as a signatory. This decision comes with great pain as we fully endorse the document’s contents and its principles of a truly open cloud. However, this community has issued a mandate of openness and fair process, loudly and clearly, and so the CCIF can not in good faith endorse this document.”

Meanwhile, in a statement issued to eWEEK and others, Amazon.com said it would not take part in the Open Cloud Manifesto. The Open Cloud Manifesto, as described in the document itself, says:

“We believe that these core principles are rooted in the belief that cloud computing should be as open as all other IT technologies. This document does not intend to define a final taxonomy of cloud computing or to charter a new standards effort. Nor does it try to be an exhaustive thesis on cloud architecture and design. Rather, this document speaks to CIOs, governments, IT users and business leaders who intend to use cloud computing and to establish a set of core principles for cloud providers. Cloud computing is still in its early stages, with much to learn and more experimentation to come. However, the time is right for the members of the emerging cloud computing community to come together around the notion of an open cloud.”