Despite IT’s general disinterest in all things cloud, conferences such as last week’s Interop NY dedicated the majority of their sessions to the subject: 40 of over 100 sessions and expo floor presentations centered around the cloud. But according to Gartner Inc.’s 2010 Hype Cycle Report, released earlier this month, IT professionals everywhere can finally exhale. According to the report, cloud computing has reached the peak of its hype cycle and will become mainstream within the next five years. VP and Fellow at Gartner, Jackie Fenn, attributes the focus on technologies such as the cloud to “particularly high levels of hype, or [because they] may not be broadly acknowledged but which we believe have the potential for significant impact.”
Though the cloud and all its bells and whistles has yet to dive through the “Trough of Disillusionment,” the end of its marketing heyday will allow for a more realistic approach by users. Cloud evangelist Randy Bias already takes a pragmatic approach to the cloud, offering this advice: Make sure your app is performing properly on your current infrastructure before sending it to the cloud. With less inflated expectations, users can begin to research the specific aspects of cloud computing that pertain to them and can benefit their business. It seems some businesses are already doing their specified research: When I stopped at the Rackspace booth, they said they saw fewer questions about security and compliance this year; those questions were more predominant last year. This year more people were concerned with exactly what apps to send to the cloud. Vendors such as Cloudscaling and Nimbo Tech are seeing some trends of functions to send to the cloud with their clients using dev test and DR.
John Shaw of Nimbo Tech predicted we’re in the first wave of cloud adoption, where the majority of people trust their data to email and document cloud options. The second and third phases will include SaaS apps, SAP, BI and data that enterprises want to store outside of the firewall to share with partners. Now that cloud computing is descending the path away from its puffed-up and misunderstood image, perhaps we can move on to the second and third waves.
Let us know what you think of Gartner’s interpretation of where the cloud falls on the hype cycle. To figure out where you are in the hype cycle and where you should be, check out this week’s free IT book giveaway: Mastering the Hype Cycle: How to Choose the Right Innovation at the Right Time by Jackie Fenn and Mark Raskino.