Back in November of 2010 I wrote about the new Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA) and their lofty goal of putting together a consumer-based body that would be able to specify datacenter and cloud software and hardware development strategies due to the huge buying power of their member organizations. At that time the group had roughly outlined their pending .5 specifications, and the main interest was in Intel's role as technical advisor (the ONLY technical advisor) to the fledgling organization.
Due to a lack iof additional information and a brief email I received a fewe weeks ago announcing the 270th member company to join the group I attempted a follow-up article a few weeks ago and was somewhat disheartened to find little additional information since the 2010 announcement. There was also no longer any menti0on of Intel on the group's website, and the Intel site search yielded only the documents pertaining to the original November 2010 announcement.
But on June 7th the ODCA announced that they had reached Usage Model Version 1.0 of their customer requirements for cloud computing and I had the opportunity to sit down with Andrew Feig, Executive Director on the Technology Advisory Group with UBS' Global Technology Infrastructure Services (GTIS) and Board Member, Open Data Center Alliance, and Jason Waxman, General Manager, High Density Computing, Data Center Group, Intel Corporation, and Intel's liaison between themselves and the ODCA.
Andrew took the time to lay out the current roadmap model, emphasizing that the goal of the roadmap was not only to give member companies a voice in the way that technologies for the cloud were provided and implemented but to also let the vendor community know that there was a significant need for transparency and interoperability for the technologies that they were going to endeavor to sell into the user community and that by matching the goals of the ODCA they vendors would find a ready-made, technically aware, market for their products.
Jason focused on the fact that the needs of the user community needed to drive the vendors and that the ODCA was the "voice of the customer deploying services." He made it clear that it was necessary for the ODCA Roadmap to translate a wide variety of needs into specifications and services and that Intel was 100% behind the group, providing technical consulting expertise from Intel architects as requested by the ODCA.
The ODCA is liaising with various other standards bodies in their goal of delivering ever more useful roadmaps and understands that regular updates will be required. Adopting green technologies and standardized datacenter benchmarks, such as those promulgated by the Green Grid will also be a part of their standard practices.
Member companies are free to pick and choose from among the roadmap standards as to which they will utilize within their organizations, and with the ofical relase of the roadmap will be able to point it out to the companies from which they plan to purchase. The goal is to put vendors into the position of needing to consider the standards that the roadmap presents or at least take notice of the fact that companies representing billions of dollars of potential datacenter and cloud computing purchases will be adhering to this model.