Tuesday, May 31, 2011

IEEE Standards Association- Cloud standards initiative

As coordinator for Software/IT focus are of IEEE-SA, India standards initiative, I have been following Cloud Computing developments for over five months. Cloud standards are pretty complex at the moment, as several standard development organisations are working in their own way to standardise that part of Cloud Computing which is close to their work. Like the proverbial Elephant and 5 blind men trying to describe it, you get different view based on the group you interact with.
Participants at Cloud Computing Standards meeitng
From cloudcomputing2
By far the best way to understand the different players in cloud computing standards is by visiting Cloud standards wiki or a detailed presentation about it Apart from that I was happy to know that IEEE has done a thorough analysis of the standardization efforts and came up with two proposals namely IEEE P2301(TM), Draft Guide for Cloud Portability and Interoperability Profiles, and IEEE P2302(TM), Draft Standard for Intercloud Interoperability and Federation. P2301 will help users in procuring, developing, building, and using standards based cloud computing products and services. P2302 will help build an economy of scale among cloud product and service providers that remains transparent to users and applications. It also addresses fundamental, transparent interoperability and federation much in the way SS7/IN did for the global telephony system, and naming and routing protocols did for the Internet.

Although all the SDOs are focussed on open standards, the level of openness becomes clear when you look at each SDO, Some are industry bodies, which means that you need to be an employee of a company to participate in such initiatives. IEEE probably is the only SDO, where you can contribute as an individual, irrespective of your affiliation.

In second cloud computing standards meeting held at Bangalore on May 24, Dr Debu from Huawei explained the work in progress in ITU on cloud security. This mainly consists of Cloud definition as Europe does not agree with NIST defintions, PKI infrastructure for Cloud, Certificate Management, x.509 V3 Certificate and Key management and also Personal cloud Security Framework. David Bernstein, IEEE WG chair explained how the work done over the last three years has culminated in the two work groups P2301 and P2302. He explained that IEEE objective was not to duplicate other SDO's efforts but to organise the same. He also spoke of open source test bed for cloud interoperability and invited participation from Indian organizations.

For more information on India standards initiative and to be part of the cloud computing SIG team, check out the IEEE-SA India SIG website