When you say "cloud" these days, most people think of Amazon or Google or Microsoft. But that's one vision of cloud computing, and not necessarily the one that will prevail in the enterprise sector. Is a cloud about the concept of how computing is assembled and made more efficient, or where it resides? For many companies, the advantages of cloud computing will be realized inside their own data centers.
Ken Oestreich of Cassatt captures the opportunities for in-house cloud computing in a post titled Creating a Generic (Internal) Cloud Architecture.
I am simply trying to challenge the belief that cloud-like architectures have to remain external to the enterprise. They don't. I believe it's inevitable that they will soon find their way into the enterprise, and become a revolutionary paradigm of how *internal* IT infrastructure is operated and managed. With each IT management conversation I've had, the concept that I recently put forward is becoming clearer and more inevitable. That an "internal cloud" (call it a cloud architecture or utility computing) will penetrate enterprise datacenters.
Ken offers several examples of how cloud technologies are likely to be implemented in enterprise data centers and the advantages they offer (including power management, Cassatt's focus). If you're trying to sort out the best way for your company to leverage cloud computing, Ken's post is essential reading.