Welcome!

Microservices Expo Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Stackify Blog, Andreas Grabner

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Containers Expo Blog

@CloudExpo: Article

The Cloud Computing Ecosphere: Main Companies and Applications Classified

The heart of the cloud is what some people call Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

Markus Klems' Blog

In an attempt to better understand the nature of cloud computing I tried to draw a classification of some companies and applications that spawn in the cloud.

Three different cloud computing levels

Three different cloud computing levels

Infrastructure

The heart of the cloud is what some people call Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). This is as near to bare metal as we can get: pure storage and compute capacity. With virtualization techniques it is packaged into small units that are delivered like water or electricity (notion of utility computing).

Platform as a Service

Infrastructure as a Service

Platforms

The next layer is Platform as a Service (PaaS). Here we find more complex platforms, such as Google App Engine or Salesforce.com AppExchange. Marc Andreessen, who coined the phrase “Web as Platform”, once wrote: “[a] platform is a system that can be programmed and therefore customized by outside developers — users — and in that way, adapted to countless needs and niches that the platform’s original developers could not have possibly contemplated, much less had time to accommodate. [...] If you can program it, then it’s a platform. If you can’t, then it’s not.” (Source)


Cloud Applications and Services

Platform as a Service

Although I would not consider Amazon EC2 or S3 to be a platform but rather IaaS, the elastic infrastructure provided by Amazon has enabled third-party developers to build platforms on top of it. I asked myself where in my diagram to put the other Amazon Web services (FPS, DevPay, etc.) but haven’t come up with a plausible place, yet. It should probably be somewhere between IaaS and PaaS.

Apps & Services

The outer layer of my onion is formed by all the applications and services that are built on top of either IaaS or PaaS. I am not satisfied with the outer layer. I feel that it needs further categorization, such as grouping by types of applications, e.g. Social Network Apps, Backup Services, and so on.

Infrastructure as a Service

Cloud Applications and Services

API

Each layer has a different set of APIs. Near to the core, developers have standard Web technologies and protocols to access and use the cloud. Further away from the core, levels of abstraction are added, making APIs more vendor-specific. On the application & service layer, we find a mix of standardized and less standardized APIs.

Cloud APIs

Cloud APIs

Suggestions?

I want to improve and extend my diagrams and find a more proper categorization of cloud vendors and services that sit on top of the cloud. What are your ideas and comments on this one? And another thing is: Would you consider firms that use IaaS, like Mosso and cohesiveFT, as PaaS vendors? How are they different from, say Joyent or FlexiScale?


[This analysis appeared originally here and is republished in full by the kind permission of the author.]


More Stories By Markus Klems

Markus Klems is a research assistant at Germany-based FZI Research Center for Information Technology. His main areas of interests are cloud computing, grids, distributed programming and agile Web development - the technological point of view as well as business models. He blogs at http://markusklems.wordpress.com/.

Comments (2)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Microservices Articles
Is advanced scheduling in Kubernetes achievable?Yes, however, how do you properly accommodate every real-life scenario that a Kubernetes user might encounter? How do you leverage advanced scheduling techniques to shape and describe each scenario in easy-to-use rules and configurations? In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Oleg Chunikhin, CTO at Kublr, answered these questions and demonstrated techniques for implementing advanced scheduling. For example, using spot instances and co...
Skeuomorphism usually means retaining existing design cues in something new that doesn’t actually need them. However, the concept of skeuomorphism can be thought of as relating more broadly to applying existing patterns to new technologies that, in fact, cry out for new approaches. In his session at DevOps Summit, Gordon Haff, Senior Cloud Strategy Marketing and Evangelism Manager at Red Hat, discussed why containers should be paired with new architectural practices such as microservices rathe...
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Mike Johnston, an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io, will discuss how to use Kubernetes to setup a SaaS infrastructure for your business. Mike Johnston is an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io with over 12 years of experience designing, deploying, and maintaining server and workstation infrastructure at all scales. He has experience with brick and mortar data centers as well as cloud providers like Digital Ocean, Amazon Web Services, and Rackspace....
SYS-CON Events announced today the Kubernetes and Google Container Engine Workshop, being held November 3, 2016, in conjunction with @DevOpsSummit at 19th Cloud Expo at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. This workshop led by Sebastian Scheele introduces participants to Kubernetes and Google Container Engine (GKE). Through a combination of instructor-led presentations, demonstrations, and hands-on labs, students learn the key concepts and practices for deploying and maintainin...
Docker is sweeping across startups and enterprises alike, changing the way we build and ship applications. It's the most prominent and widely known software container platform, and it's particularly useful for eliminating common challenges when collaborating on code (like the "it works on my machine" phenomenon that most devs know all too well). With Docker, you can run and manage apps side-by-side - in isolated containers - resulting in better compute density. It's something that many developer...
Modern software design has fundamentally changed how we manage applications, causing many to turn to containers as the new virtual machine for resource management. As container adoption grows beyond stateless applications to stateful workloads, the need for persistent storage is foundational - something customers routinely cite as a top pain point. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Bill Borsari, Head of Systems Engineering at Datera, explored how organizations can reap the bene...
As software becomes more and more complex, we, as software developers, have been splitting up our code into smaller and smaller components. This is also true for the environment in which we run our code: going from bare metal, to VMs to the modern-day Cloud Native world of containers, schedulers and micro services. While we have figured out how to run containerized applications in the cloud using schedulers, we've yet to come up with a good solution to bridge the gap between getting your contain...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
DevOps is speeding towards the IT world like a freight train and the hype around it is deafening. There is no reason to be afraid of this change as it is the natural reaction to the agile movement that revolutionized development just a few years ago. By definition, DevOps is the natural alignment of IT performance to business profitability. The relevance of this has yet to be quantified but it has been suggested that the route to the CEO’s chair will come from the IT leaders that successfully ma...
Skeuomorphism usually means retaining existing design cues in something new that doesn’t actually need them. However, the concept of skeuomorphism can be thought of as relating more broadly to applying existing patterns to new technologies that, in fact, cry out for new approaches. In his session at DevOps Summit, Gordon Haff, Senior Cloud Strategy Marketing and Evangelism Manager at Red Hat, will discuss why containers should be paired with new architectural practices such as microservices ra...