It took a while, but clouds finally appeared on our cover last month.

To recap: One of the points that Rogers Engineers Sandip Singh and Tony Colantonio made was that within 36+ months, the combination of common control plane technology, thin clients, and converged IP networks would bring cloud computing to life.

That would put us a few months outside the window predicted by Comcast CTO Tony Werner, who included cloud computing in a Nov. 2007 speech listing five trends he expected to emerge within five years.

Singh and Colantonio defined the cloud not simply as Internet-accessible services, but shared information and services across service provider boundaries. That idea is gaining steam (or vapor).

Converging or overlapping clouds is part of what Virgin Media Director of Technical Strategy Kevin Baughan had in mind at last month’s Cable Congress in Brussels. "Service mixes do change," he said. "People move."

"Clouds are something that you’re going begin to think about as a lifetime."

Moreover, Baughan said that just as operators have provided premium entertainment as a service, they should be able to do the same regarding information technology. Is there a substantive difference between delivering movies from Disney and IT solutions from Microsoft or Adobe?

Not really. Comcast’s collaboration with Microsoft, for instance, was part of its initial business service offering several years ago.

Remote-storage (RS) DVR is another promising and related technology category. (See CT’s May 2009 issue, for an earlier contribution in that area.) There was plenty of discussion at Cable Congress about RS-DVR, and it is likely to be the near-term header for more cloud-related developments.

Jonathan Tombes

Editor

The Daily

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