Top 5 questions for the titans of cloud

Moderated by:
Jo Maitland - Research Director, GigaOM Research	
Werner Vogels - CTO,

If you had one question to pose to the executives running the biggest cloud implementations in the world, what would it be? It’ snot really an idle question. Next month in San Francisco, the cloud chiefs from Amazon, Google, HP, IBM, Rackspace, Red Hat and VMware will be on stage at Structure June 18-19. So after a highly unscientific query — on Twitter, on Facebook, via email and phone with industry sources  — here’s the list:

 1: When will all the major clouds support the same set of APIs?

2: When will they support migration of data/workloads from one cloud to another natively?

3: What comes after the race to the bottom in cloud storage prices plays out?

4: When will we see a true cloud exchange? 

5: How can we be sure our data is safe in your cloud from prying eyes?

If there’s a thread in here — other than the natural concern about data privacy post Prismgate  — it’s about portability, interoperability, cloud kumbaya sort of stuff. Things that customers want and cloud providers are probably not that happy to provide, no matter what they say about customers’ freedom to walk away.

Lance Crosby CEO of IBM's SoftLayer business.

Lance Crosby CEO of IBM’s SoftLayer business.

The status quo is that cloud companies make it as easy and fast as possible for customers to put their data and applications on their own respective clouds. When it comes to moving them off, well that’s more of a sticky wicket.

Google SVP and research fellow Urs Hölzle

Google SVP and research fellow Urs Hölzle

So those are the most popular questions from and casual survey. Two CIOs, one from of a large architectural firm and one from a collaboration and file share company separately said pretty much the same thing. When they have a big compute job, they’d like to be able to go up and price that specific job on demand across clouds and pick the option that is most cost-effective that day without locking into that provider.

Please submit your own questions in the comment section below. Be civil please.


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