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Anne Stuart’s BPM in Action

Michael Dortch

HP and Intel, and Yahoo! – Oh, My! Talk About Your “Big Mash-Ups!?

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Well, well, well. That would be one “well? each for Hewlett-Packard, Intel, and Yahoo!, all three of which announced today plans to build a test bed for cloud computing that will span six data centers in three countries.

The goals are simple, yet profoundly broad – to provide a real-life test bed for all things cloud-related, including hardware, software, and data center management, and to encourage collaboration among academia, government, and industry.

Better yet, HP, Intel, and Yahoo! say that they plan to provide application programming interfaces (APIs) that expose the guts of all levels of “their? cloud, from low-level physical infrastructure to high-level software and services. Published reports indicate that this is a prime differentiator of this effort from one announced previously by Google and IBM. THAT initiative apparently only supports openness to developers and tire-kickers at the application/service level.

HP, Intel, and Yahoo! plan to have all six data centers operating in concert before year’s end. I, for one, can barely wait. If The Big Mash-Up is in fact coming – and it is – the interested segments of the world at large will need a readily available, open, and flexible environment within which to build and test solutions. Solutions ranging from variations on traditional applications to cloud-based fill-in-the-blank(s)-as-a-service. And, ultimately, those building and testing such solutions will also need a robust environment within which to deploy the successful ones. And I doubt that many will care whether that turns out to be the HP-Intel-Yahoo! cloud, the Google-IBM cloud, the Sun Microsystems cloud/grid, or something else. Choice and competition are good.

Software as a service (SaaS) and its evolving descendents are critical to the success and broad adoption of The Big Mash-Up, which promises/threatens to integrate almost everything that matters to business users and business and IT decision-makers. Including and especially elements related to business process management and optimization. Some variation of cloud computing seems to be emerging as the “go-to? platform for software-and-everything-else-business-related-as-a-service, joining and perhaps supplanting current service-oriented architecture (SOA) efforts. This latest cloud, perhaps paradoxically, brightens the whole picture for cloud computing, SaaS, and The Big Mash-Up. I can barely wait for the first slew of solutions we can explore – and I don’t expect to have to wait for very long.

Shameless Self-Promotion, Again/Still: I’m fielding another Aberdeen Group survey on information architecture agility. If you have investments and/or interests in Information Lifecycle Management (ILM), Master Data Management (MDM), or reducing “time to information? – the time it takes to turn raw data into information business applications and users can use – please go to http://www.aberdeen.com/survey/agil-ebizq/ and take the brief survey. You’ll get a free copy of the resulting report when it’s published, AND a free copy of my recent Aberdeen report on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and IT infrastructures immediately after you complete the survey. (Yes, you SHOULD care about RFID!) That’s nearly $800 of free research, and my undying thanks, all for taking a survey. Such a deal – take the survey, and tell your friends!

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Business process management and optimization -- philosophies, policies, practices, and punditry.

Anne Stuart

I am the editor of ebizQ.

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