Will the Cloud Create a 'New Era of Stealth Silos?'


Undeniably, there are a lot of connections between SOA and cloud computing. David Linthicum and others have written about this connection and it's pretty simple to understand, once you consider that SOA allows you (or if not you, per se, then a vendor) to create services that can then be delivered through the cloud.


Cloud platforms don't have to be built on SOA, but it sure makes life easier. And the cloud is a great way to squeeze more value from a SOA investment. Obvious, right?


...Except, there's a problem; there's always a problem. And with cloud computing, it's a lack of interoperability and standardization, according to Jim Kobielus, a senior analyst at Forrester Research. And that is very un-SOA, as Kobielus explained in a recent eCommerce News article:


"The current state of cloud computing goes against the grain of SOA, where SOA is all about platform agnosticity and being able to port services flexibly and transparently from one operating platform to another."


Kobielus believes the cloud could lead to a new era of silos, and - given that many cloud solutions are adopted without IT's input - stealth silos, at that. If Kobielus is right, this is good and bad news for IT.


It's bad news because the business is going to ask you to clean up the mess of cloud silos and integrate everything-yet again. And this time, you're going to know a lot less about the systems and solutions involved.


The business will have no one to blame but itself-but that probably won't stop them from getting angry when you can't snap your fingers and make it happen instantly.


But every cloud-ahem - has a silver lining. Remember last week, when I shared how ZapThink's Ronald Schmelzer believed cloud computing could be the demise of IT if IT didn't move ahead with SOA? Well, if Kobielus is right, there's another reason the business will keep IT around: integration.


So the good news is the same as the bad news-the business is going to ask you to integrate all those silos. And that's job security, dude.