Cloud computing, as an IT service delivery model, is advancing at a staggering pace. It is being adopted by a spectrum of stakeholders — individual users, businesses, educational institutions, governments, and community organizations — and is causing a paradigm shift which has huge transformational potential. To successfully and fully embrace the promise of clouds, adopters must of course use one or more of the three foundation cloud services — infrastructure, platform and software/applications. But they must also address factors including security, privacy, user access management, compliance requirements, business continuity and more. Furthermore, they may have to use services from more than one provider, aggregate those services, and also integrate them with their legacy applications/systems. They may need to architect a cloud-based system to meet their specific requirements. Special skills and experience are needed to address these requirements — skills that many cloud adopters wouldn’t have.

To assist them in their transition to clouds and allow them to focus on their core business, a spectrum of new cloud services are emerging. In fact, a cloud ecosystem is emerging with several support services that augment, complement and assist the foundational services. Investors, corporations and start-ups are eagerly investing in promising cloud computing technologies and services in both developed economies and in emerging economies.

What are these new cloud services, and what are their business models? Who is offering them, and how do we evaluate them? How can cloud adopters leverage and benefit from these services? How will the cloud ecosystem emerge in the next five years? These are some of the key questions facing IT professionals, cloud adopters and business executives.

In an upcoming issue, Cutter IT Journal will comprehensively address these questions, discuss ongoing developments and present an overview on the emerging cloud ecosystem. We seek to present a diverse set of perspectives on this important theme and we encourage those around the globe to share with us their insights, experiences and vision.

TOPICS OF INTEREST

We invite articles addressing the following questions and other topics related to the theme:

* How will the cloud eco-system emerge, and what are its characteristics?
* What are the emerging cloud services besides the foundational services — infrastructure, platform and software application — and what are their features, benefits and limitations, if any?
* How will services such as security as a service, compliance as a service, identity and access management as a service, monitoring as a service, and testing as a service emerge in the next few years?
* Is there a need for cloud aggregators, and what are the roles of cloud aggregators?
* How do cloud aggregators accomplish their functions? What are potential business models?
* Who is a cloud broker, and how does he differ from cloud aggregators?
* How will vertical clouds, also called community clouds, meet the special needs of the specific groups they target, such as healthcare, finance, law, and education? Will there be demands for vertical clouds?
* How can third party service providers address integration, interoperability, and portability issues that many cloud services and applications present?
* What kind of services help in addressing business continuity of applications and data deployed in the cloud?
* Can disparate cloud services be managed by a “mega cloud” or “cloud of clouds” and if so what is their promise?
* What innovations in technology, design, service delivery, and business models are needed to make further inroads and embrace the cloud’s untapped potential?
* How would clouds look five years from now? How will they shape the industry and society?
* What are mobile clouds or social clouds? What are their distinct features and how are they accomplished? For what kinds of applications are they targeted?
* Is there a need or demand for micro clouds, or personal clouds? What are their characteristics, and how can they be realized? For what kinds of applications are they best suited?
* With so many different cloud services being offered from so many providers and resellers, how do you choose? What are the guidelines?
* Will anyone be influencing or controlling the emerging overall cloud ecosystem? Is it desirable or even possible?

SEND US YOUR ARTICLE IDEA by 5 January 2013
Please respond to San Murugesan, smurugesan[at]cutter[dot]com, with a copy to itjournal[at]cutter[dot]com, no later than 5 January 2013 and include an extended abstract and a short article outline showing major discussion points.

Accepted articles are due by 8 February 2013.

Editorial Guidelines

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Christine Generali

Christine Generali is a Group Publisher for Cutter Consortium - responsible for the editorial direction and content management of Cutter's flagship publication, Cutter IT Journal.

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