Appirio Cloud Computing Map Aims to Clarify Ecosystem

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2009-11-16

In an effort to define and clarify different levels of services from a growing list of providers, systems integrator Appirio on Nov. 16 launched what it describes as the first "interactive ecosystem map" of the burgeoning cloud computing market.

This online map, which can be viewed here, is intended to help enterprise IT managers understand the new possibilities offered in the area of cloud systems by means of a standard taxonomy and definitions.

Standards in cloud computing are being researched at various technical organizations, but most analysts agree that it will be at least a few years before a workable set of standards will be in place for general use.

The free-to-use map breaks out 70 different layers of technology across applications, platforms and infrastructure, and presents it in grid form. For example, in the application sector it spotlights market leaders such as, Google Apps, and IBM, and clearly lays out all the features offered-or not offered-by each.

The map also distinguishes between cloud offerings that are available on-premises versus hosted single tenant, and on-premises versus multitenant. It also illustrates which elements are available directly, bundled or provided by a partner.

The offerings of leading vendors are highlighted across the stack, as are point solutions from newer and relatively unknown vendors. Links are provided within the map, enabling users to look deeper into each offering.

"The cloud ecosystem is evolving so quickly that it's difficult for most enterprises to keep up," Ryan Nichols, Appirio's director of cloudsourcing and cloud strategy, told eWEEK. "We created the ecosystem map to track this evolution ourselves, and have decided to publish it to help others assess the 'lay of the land.'"

The map was created in collaboration with [cloud expert] Troy Angrignon, co-chair of the 13th Under the Radar conference, Nichols told eWEEK.

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