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The Value Proposition of Cloud Computing

An attempt to find criteria that might be helpful in categorizing Cloud Computing business scenarios

Markus Klems' Blog

What are the benefits from using Cloud Computing services or platforms? Cost efficiency, shorter innovation cycles and scalability are frequently mentioned promises. However, the value proposition of Cloud Computing obviously depends on the corresponding business scenario. You cannot properly value the benefits from using Cloud Computing services unless you know and understand the relevant parameters of your project.

The question is: which are criteria that make Cloud Computing services a valuable infrastructure for certain projects? Which are criteria that have a negative impact?

This is an attempt to find criteria that might be helpful in categorizing Cloud Computing business scenarios. Feel free to leave comments…

Business Case

* Application Hosting / SaaS
* Backup and Storage
* Business Continuity Planning (Disaster Recovery)
* Content Delivery
* E-Commerce
* Games (e.g. MMORPG)
* High-Performance Computing
* Massive Updating Services
* Media Hosting
* Rapid Prototyping
* Search Engines
* Social Networking
* Thin Client Back-end
* Web Hosting

(Reference: http://aws.amazon.com/solutions/case-studies/)

Organization

General description:
* Start-up company
* Enterprise
* State-owned enterprise

Compliance

* IT regulation (data ownership, data protection)
* Industry-specific regulation

Business Objectives

* Foster innovation
* Reduce time to market
* Cost efficiency
* Increase user base
* Online collaboration
* …

Strategy

* Vendor lock-in, provider dependency

Demand

* Expected demand: seasonal
* Expected demand: batch job
* Expected demand: temporary effect (e.g. Olympic Games Website)
* Unexpected demand: temporary effect (digg effect)

Application

* Database
* Programming language and runtime environment
* Load-balancing and redundancy mechanisms

Non-Functional Requirements
(obviously tied to above mentioned criteria)

* Security
* High availability
* Reliability
* Scalability
* …

Updated future versions of the list are here: http://cloudwiki.fzi.de.

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/.

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