As The Register notes, Microsoft corporate strategy leader Rolf Harms spoke at the Cloud Connect conference in California this week, and said that “horseless carriage syndrome” typifies today’s cloud computing business. He was referring to the fact that in the early days of the automobile, cars were designed very much like the carriages that had previously been powered by horses, with some of them even containing places to put a whip. “When you think about a new paradigm, it’s very hard to do so without putting it in the context of the existing mindset,” Harms noted. There are indeed signs that the cloud computing scene shows signs of horseless carriage syndrome, but that’s exactly why open source cloud efforts show extreme promise.
“You don’t even get the full benefit of a public cloud, [Harms] says, if you use the most famous public cloud: Amazon EC2, which is an ‘infrastructure cloud’ that gives you access to raw compute resources, including virtual servers and storage. You can readily move existing applications onto the service and build new apps with almost any tool you like – but for Harms, you don’t get the same cost benefit that comes with a ‘platform cloud,’ a service that juggles the underlying resources on your behalf.”