Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Cloud Expo Authors: Plutora Blog, XebiaLabs Blog, Elizabeth White, Dana Gardner, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: Cloud Expo

Cloud Expo: Blog Feed Post

Semantic Cloud Abstraction

What is the Semantic Web and why does it matter for a unified cloud interface?

The CCIF and it's members have recently focused on creating a common cloud taxonomy and ontology. I find it's starting to sound a lot like semantics, Cloud Semantics. We are in a sense defining what cloud computing is by describing it's "components" and their relationships to one another. One that is capable of expressing cloud computing and its subsequent parts in terms of a consensus data model.

So in this effort we may actually be defining a dynamic computing model that can, under certain conditions, be 'trained' to appropriately 'learn' the meaning of related cloud & infrastructure resources based on an common ontology / taxonomy. In a sense, we are talking about the Semantic Web applied to API's or more broadly, a unified cloud interface.

What is the Semantic Web and why does it matter for a unified cloud interface?

The Wikipedia describes the semantic web as "a vision of information that is understandable by computers, so that they can perform more of the tedious work involved in finding, sharing and combining information on the web."

Why not apply those same philosophies to the underlying control structures of the web (i.e. the cloud) itself? A Semantic Cloud Infrastructure capable of adapting to a variety of methodologies / architectures and completely agnostic to any specific API or platform being described. A general abstraction that doesn't care if you're focusing on a platform (Google App Engine, Salesforce, Mosso etc), application (SaaS, Web2.0, email, id/auth) or infrastructure model (EC2, Vmware, CIM, etc).

I'm the first to point out there are other groups attempting a similar approach for web services (i.e. Liberty Alliance), systems management (i.e. DMTF / CIM, OASIS) and others (i.e. OpenID/OAuth). However, I feel all of these groups lack a true consensus of how to describe "all" the aspects of the cloud using a unified semantic ontology.

I've been very impressed by the work the Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF) has achieved with their Common Information Model (CIM). It could be a key aspect of our unified cloud interface efforts. However, one of the problems a lot of these system management standards are missing is any kind of usage outside of the traditional "enterprise" system management platforms or in the case of VMWare or Microsoft, they are simply limited to their own platforms - interoperable, but only if you're using our software.

The key drivers of a unified cloud interface (UCI) is "One abstraction to Rule them All" - an API for other API's. A singular abstraction that can encompass the entire infrastructure stack as well as emerging cloud centric technologies through a unified interface. What a semantic model enables for UCI is a capability to bridge both cloud based API's such as Amazon Web Services with existing protocols and standards, regardless of the level of adoption of the underlying API's or technology. The goal is simple, develop your application once, deploy anywhere at anytime for any reason.

The other benefit of a semantic model is that of future proofing. Creating a model that assumes we as an industry are moving forward and not making any assumptions on the advancements in technology by implementing a static specification based on current technological limitations but instead creating one that can adapt as technology evolves.

The use of a resource description framework (RDF) based language may be an ideal method to describe our semantic cloud data model. The benefit to these types of RDF based ontology languages is they act as a general method for the conceptual description or modeling of information that is implemented by actual web resources. These web resources could just as easily be "cloud resources" or API's. This approach will allow us to easily take an RDF-based cloud data model and adapt it within other ontology languages or web service formats making it both platform and vendor agnostic. In applying this approach we're not so much defining how, but instead describing what. What is cloud computing?

The next steps in enabling a unified future for cloud computing will be to create a working group focused on an open semantic taxonomy and framework. This group will investigate the development of a functional unified cloud interface implementation across several cloud and infrastructure providers. To this end, we have created a Google Code project at http://code.google.com/p/unifiedcloud/ The current time frame for the public unveiling of an initial functional draft UCI implementation, taxonomy and ontology will be April 2nd at the upcoming Wall Street Cloud Computing Interoperability Forum.

If you'd like to be a contributor to the UCI working group please get in touch with me directly. If you would like to be involved without joining the UCI Working Group, you are encouraged to review and comment on the working drafts as they become available. Updates will be posted to the Cloud Computing Interoperability Forum mailing list. Feedback from people & companies actually implementing the specifications will be especially valuable and appreciated.

More Stories By Reuven Cohen

An instigator, part time provocateur, bootstrapper, amateur cloud lexicographer, and purveyor of random thoughts, 140 characters at a time.

Reuven is an early innovator in the cloud computing space as the founder of Enomaly in 2004 (Acquired by Virtustream in February 2012). Enomaly was among the first to develop a self service infrastructure as a service (IaaS) platform (ECP) circa 2005. As well as SpotCloud (2011) the first commodity style cloud computing Spot Market.

Reuven is also the co-creator of CloudCamp (100+ Cities around the Globe) CloudCamp is an unconference where early adopters of Cloud Computing technologies exchange ideas and is the largest of the ‘barcamp’ style of events.

@CloudExpo Stories
Performance is the intersection of power, agility, control, and choice. If you value performance, and more specifically consistent performance, you need to look beyond simple virtualized compute. Many factors need to be considered to create a truly performant environment. In his General Session at 15th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Sr. Software Architect at SoftLayer, discussed how to take advantage of a multitude of compute options and platform features to make cloud the cornerstone of your onlin...
The explosion of connected devices / sensors is creating an ever-expanding set of new and valuable data. In parallel the emerging capability of Big Data technologies to store, access, analyze, and react to this data is producing changes in business models under the umbrella of the Internet of Things (IoT). In particular within the Insurance industry, IoT appears positioned to enable deep changes by altering relationships between insurers, distributors, and the insured. In his session at @Things...
JFrog on Thursday announced that it has added Docker support to Bintray, its distribution-as-a-service (DaaS) platform. When combined with JFrog’s Artifactory binary repository management system, organizations can now manage Docker images with an end-to-end solution that supports all technologies. The new version of Bintray allows organizations to create an unlimited number of private Docker repositories, and through the use of fast Akamai content delivery networks (CDNs), it decreases the dow...
Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) is a technology designed to make DevOps easier and allow developers to focus on application development. The PaaS takes care of provisioning, scaling, HA, and other cloud management aspects. Apache Stratos is a PaaS codebase developed in Apache and designed to create a highly productive developer environment while also supporting powerful deployment options. Integration with the Docker platform, CoreOS Linux distribution, and Kubernetes container management system ...
Even as cloud and managed services grow increasingly central to business strategy and performance, challenges remain. The biggest sticking point for companies seeking to capitalize on the cloud is data security. Keeping data safe is an issue in any computing environment, and it has been a focus since the earliest days of the cloud revolution. Understandably so: a lot can go wrong when you allow valuable information to live outside the firewall. Recent revelations about government snooping, along...
SYS-CON Media announced that IBM, which offers the world’s deepest portfolio of technologies and expertise that are transforming the future of work, has launched ad campaigns on SYS-CON’s numerous online magazines such as Cloud Computing Journal, Virtualization Journal, SOA World Magazine, and IoT Journal. IBM’s campaigns focus on vendors in the technology marketplace, the future of testing, Big Data and analytics, and mobile platforms.
It’s been proven time and time again that in tech, diversity drives greater innovation, better team productivity and greater profits and market share. So what can we do in our DevOps teams to embrace diversity and help transform the culture of development and operations into a true “DevOps” team? In her session at DevOps Summit, Stefana Muller, Director, Product Management – Continuous Delivery at CA Technologies, will answer that question citing examples, showing how to create opportunities f...
IBM has announced that SoftLayer will offer OpenPOWER-based servers as part of its portfolio of cloud-based services. With the new offering, clients will be able to select OpenPOWER-based “bare metal” servers when configuring their cloud-based IT infrastructure from SoftLayer, an IBM company. Leveraging the OpenPOWER Foundation design concept, the servers were developed to help clients better manage data-intensive workloads on public and private clouds. Increasingly cloud technologies, bot...
Red Hat has launched the Red Hat Cloud Innovation Practice, a new global team of experts that will assist companies with more quickly on-ramping to the cloud. They will do this by providing solutions and services such as validated designs with reference architectures and agile methodology consulting, training, and support. The Red Hat Cloud Innovation Practice is born out of the integration of technology and engineering expertise gained through the company’s 2014 acquisitions of leading Ceph s...
PubNub on Monday has announced that it is partnering with IBM to bring its sophisticated real-time data streaming and messaging capabilities to Bluemix, IBM’s cloud development platform. “Today’s app and connected devices require an always-on connection, but building a secure, scalable solution from the ground up is time consuming, resource intensive, and error-prone,” said Todd Greene, CEO of PubNub. “PubNub enables web, mobile and IoT developers building apps on IBM Bluemix to quickly add sc...
Business and IT leaders today need better application delivery capabilities to support critical new innovation. But how often do you hear objections to improving application delivery like, “I can harden it against attack, but not on this timeline”; “I can make it better, but it will cost more”; “I can deliver faster, but not with these specs”; or “I can stay strong on cost control, but quality will suffer”? In the new application economy, these tradeoffs are no longer acceptable. Customers will ...
Docker is an excellent platform for organizations interested in running microservices. It offers portability and consistency between development and production environments, quick provisioning times, and a simple way to isolate services. In his session at DevOps Summit at 16th Cloud Expo, Shannon Williams, co-founder of Rancher Labs, will walk through these and other benefits of using Docker to run microservices, and provide an overview of RancherOS, a minimalist distribution of Linux designed...
Data-intensive companies that strive to gain insights from data using Big Data analytics tools can gain tremendous competitive advantage by deploying data-centric storage. Organizations generate large volumes of data, the vast majority of which is unstructured. As the volume and velocity of this unstructured data increases, the costs, risks and usability challenges associated with managing the unstructured data (regardless of file type, size or device) increases simultaneously, including end-to-...
The excitement around the possibilities enabled by Big Data is being tempered by the daunting task of feeding the analytics engines with high quality data on a continuous basis. As the once distinct fields of data integration and data management increasingly converge, cloud-based data solutions providers have emerged that can buffer your organization from the complexities of this continuous data cleansing and management so that you’re free to focus on the end goal: actionable insight.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is causing data centers to become radically decentralized and atomized within a new paradigm known as “fog computing.” To support IoT applications, such as connected cars and smart grids, data centers' core functions will be decentralized out to the network's edges and endpoints (aka “fogs”). As this trend takes hold, Big Data analytics platforms will focus on high-volume log analysis (aka “logs”) and rely heavily on cognitive-computing algorithms (aka “cogs”) to mak...
With several hundred implementations of IoT-enabled solutions in the past 12 months alone, this session will focus on experience over the art of the possible. Many can only imagine the most advanced telematics platform ever deployed, supporting millions of customers, producing tens of thousands events or GBs per trip, and hundreds of TBs per month. With the ability to support a billion sensor events per second, over 30PB of warm data for analytics, and hundreds of PBs for an data analytics arc...
CommVault has announced that top industry technology visionaries have joined its leadership team. The addition of leaders from companies such as Oracle, SAP, Microsoft, Cisco, PwC and EMC signals the continuation of CommVault Next, the company's business transformation for sales, go-to-market strategies, pricing and packaging and technology innovation. The company also announced that it had realigned its structure to create business units to more directly match how customers evaluate, deploy, op...
Docker has acquired software-defined networking (SDN) startup SocketPlane. SocketPlane, which was founded in Q4, 2014, with a vision of delivering Docker-native networking, has been an active participant in shaping the initial efforts around Docker’s open API for networking. The explicit focus of the SocketPlane team within Docker will be on collaborating with the partner community to complete a rich set of networking APIs that addresses the needs of application developers and network and system...
SYS-CON Media announced today that Symantec, a provider of leading security, backup and availability solutions for where vital information is stored, accessed and shared, has launched new ad campaigns on SYS-CON's i-Technology sites, which include Cloud Computing Journal, DevOps Journal, Virtualization Journal, and IoT Journal. Symantec’s campaigns focus on Disaster Recovery and High Availability, the availability of business-critical applications in today’s complex heterogeneous environments, ...
Cryptography has become one of the most underappreciated, misunderstood components of technology. It’s too easy for salespeople to dismiss concerns with three letters that nobody wants to question. ‘Yes, of course, we use AES.’ But what exactly are you trusting to be the ultimate guardian of your data? Let’s face it – you probably don’t know. An organic, grass-fed Kobe steak is a far cry from a Big Mac, but they’re both beef, right? Not exactly. Crypto is the same way. The US government require...