UK slipping down the grid, says Oracle

The growth in grid computing has slowed down with France overtaking the UK in grid adoption
Written by Colin Barker, Contributor

Whatever its enthusiastic proponents such as Oracle may wish for, the adoption of grid technology is slowing, not least in the UK. It has slipped to fifth place in the latest Grid Index, a bi-annual survey of grid adoption produced by Oracle.

This is the fourth survey of the adoption of grid technology — the interconnection of discrete systems to form more powerful, interrelated grids — conducted by Oracle and analyst group Quocirca. have done. It points to a slowing down in interest in grid technology in many parts of the world.

The grid index attempts to measure the growth of grid technology and is built from information from over 1,000 companies. The information is aggregated from three sub-indices which show preparedness ("foundation readiness index"), awareness ("knowledge and interest index") and adoption ("adoption lifecycle index").

According to the latest index, the take-up of grid technology has picked up in the last six months. While only 1.2 percent of companies said they were involved in a "broad, extensive deployment" of grid technology in November, 5.2 percent said they were in the latest survey.

In other areas, interest had picked up extensively with those saying they were now making "significant use [of grid computing] in some areas" going from 9.4 percent to 29.8 percent and those saying they were making modest use of grids, going from 10.2 percent to 39.8 percent.

But on the more precise point of whether or not they were rolling out a grid pilot "within 3 months" only 11.5 percent said they were, although that had doubled from 4.4 percent in November.

Overall, the index showed that interest in grid is slowing. The overall index (a figure from one to ten) was 5.4, up from 5.1 six months ago, but that figure had risen from 4.4 in July last year and from 3.1 six months before that.

But it was the UK which was showing a major slowdown. Here, the overall index had increased, but only from 5.3 to 5.5 between November and July on the 1 to 10 grid scale. The adoption of grid technology in the UK was rated at 3.0 on that scale last time and is still at 3.0 now. Knowledge and interest in grid technology had risen only from 6.2 to 6.5 and "foundation readiness" from 6.1 to 6.4 — it has been at 5.3 six months before.

The overall grid index for Europe shows that the UK has dropped to forth place after the Nordic countries, Germany and Italy and is tied with France. On the scale of adoption of grid technology, which is rated across the world, the UK is now sixth behind the Nordic countries, the USA, Germany, Australia/New Zealand and France.

 India is in seventh place ahead of Benelux and Spain.

The slowdown has occured because some issues are "coming to the fore" said Clive Longbottom, services director for analysts Quocirca, which produces the Grid Index on behalf of Oracle.  "Some are asking questions around the cost of grid," he said. "But this is becoming less of an issue."

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