ZDnet had a story recently titled: Cloud computing: 10 ways it will change by 2020. In the article, one of the people they talked with was John Manley - director of HP's Automated Infrastructure Lab (and someone who I’ve actually had lunch with a few times). One of the statements John made was:
"Cloud computing is the final means by which computing becomes invisible,”
One of the goals of platform as a service is to abstract the software away from the underlying hardware and OS – including what we think of as IaaS today. We’ve only seen the early stumbles of these efforts, but with cloud standards developing over the next few years this 2020 vision should be possible.
IT organizations spend time wringing their hands over issues that will shift - those constraints that are worried about today will no longer be on the critical path tomorrow. I am sure there will be a whole new set of constraints to take their place though. I used to tell people that hardware without software is just a commodity, but software without hardware is using your imagination. Maybe this will change to “software without a platform…” is just using your imagination.
2020 is less than a decade away, fortunately there will be a new crop of technical and business leaders who will have a natural understanding of this new view of the world. The business pressures of today and the innovations being worked upon will push us all to make this happen.