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Red Hat exec proposes end to IT suckage

'We don't need Ray Ozzie'

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Beyond open source

To get the cloud revolution right and have it reduce IT costs, Whitehurst said that companies such as Red Hat have to go beyond using open source and providing good infrastructure software. They have to actually bring the customers into the process, as kaizen brings parts suppliers and customers into product-design cycles.

Whitehurst declares that Red hat will absolutely be "a major player" in clouds, but it won't be because the company hires Ray Ozzie — formerly software architect and cloud guru at Microsoft — or some other hotshot. "I don't have to worry about if I have the guys who are smart enough to predict what customers need in their clouds five years from now," says Whitehurst. "We are not selling them technology, but partnering to jointly build the solution. We're not building it — they are."

The key to unlocking the value of clouds is open standards for cloud interoperability, says Whitehurst, as well as standardization up and down the stack to simplify how applications are deployed. Red Hat's research calculates that about two-thirds of a programmer's time is spent worrying about how the program will be deployed rather than on the actual coding of the program. If you have cloud standards — which seem about as likely as blade-server standards, but why not be optimistic? — then programmers can add features and functions at three times their current rate.

Of course, these will only be the features and functions you want. No bloatware is allowed in our cloudy future, it would seem. ®

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