It's Prediction Time for OpenStack and Cloud Computing

It's coming up on the end of 2013, and it's been a fun year for me at HP and a fun year for HP Cloud and for OpenStack.

One end-of-year tradition in tech is trying to predict the future.  I was recently asked for some predictions for the next year or so about OpenStack and about cloud computing. Following are my predictions.  None of them are very outrageous or too surprising, I'm pretty confident in this list.

The internationalization of cloud will accelerate.  For reasons of both latency (the speed of light is not getting any faster) and for data sovereignty, more cloud AZ and more cloud providers are going to be building and scaling out in more countries outside the US.  This may also be driven by power costs and for carbon footprint reasons.  Compute will be moved to where power is cheap, and where it is hydro/geotherm.

Encryption for data in flight, especially between AZs , is going to become more important.  After seeing Google and Yahoo both publicly start encrypting all their inter-datacenter traffic, customer and auditors are going to start demanding the same feature from other Iaas and SaaS providers.

Application Platform as a Service (aPaaS) inter-operability standards and integration with OpenStack will emerge. Open source standard interfaces and packages for aPaaS systems will start getting more visible and more important.  The various open source aPaaS projects, such as RedHat OpenShift Origin, and the various forks of Cloud Foundry, such as Stackato, which is the basis for HP Cloud's own aPaaS will talk to each to each other and to the OpenStack communities.   They will work at coming to agreement on sharing runtime cartridges, application packaging, application catalog discovery, and on what deployment, management, scaling, and orchestration features they need from the underlying infrastructure service.  The Solum project is just the beginning.

At least one OpenStack company is going to fail and go bankrupt.  This will not slow the project itself down at all, but there will be people in the tech press who will headline it as “Troubling for OpenStack” and “FOO Inc bankrupt, is OpenStack doomed?”

The open source world is going to see more projects inspired by the OpenStack development process: mandatory distributed code review feeding into mandatory continuous testing and integration.  It just makes too much sense.

We’re going to see a lot more hype and tech around open source Software Defined Networking (SDN).  Non-SDN networking in the cloud and in large enterprise is doomed.  Proprietary SDN is doomed.  Which open source SDN takes the lead remains to be seen.

We’re going to see more hyperdense computing hardware running cloud.  HP’s Moonshot is just the start.  There will be more moonshot units coming from HP, and there will be similar hyperdense machines from the other hardware vendors.

If you are sure I'm wrong about these, or if I have missed anything very obvious, as always, you can email me at mark.atwood@hp.com.