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 Tuesday, 17 January 2012

January’s meeting of the Telecommunication Standardization Advisory Group (TSAG) has established a Joint Coordination Activity on cloud computing (JCA-Cloud). The work of the ITU-T Focus Group on Cloud Computing (FG Cloud) will now be progressed through a number of ITU Study Groups with the JCA acting as a mechanism to coordinate the many dimensions of the study of cloud computing.

FG Cloud was formed following a request by leading CTOs to investigate the standardization landscape in the cloud computing market and pursue standards to lead to further commoditization and interoperability of clouds. The end goal is a cloud computing ecosystem where interoperability facilitates secure information exchange across platforms. With its work now complete, FG Cloud, in operation since May 2010, has mapped this landscape, established official liaisons with other standards developers and, as one of its deliverables, produced a technical report providing the first comprehensive view of the end-to-end architecture of a cloud computing system.

The burgeoning cloud computing market has evolved into service-oriented business models that offer physical and virtual resources on a pay-as-you-go basis – offering an alternative to in-house data centers and stringent license agreements.

The primary objectives of JCA-Cloud will be to allocate FG Cloud’s deliverables to study groups with associated domains of competence, and to ensure that the ITU-T standardization work on cloud computing progresses in a well-coordinated manner across all the relevant study groups. TSAG decided that ITU-T Study Group 13 be designated the lead study group on cloud computing.

Alongside this internal coordination role, JCA-Cloud will also take up an external collaboration role. It will analyze the cloud computing work taking place in regional and national standards development organizations (SDOs), consortia and fora, and will act as a point of contact for external bodies seeking to coordinate or collate their cloud computing standardization work with that of ITU-T. In carrying out this external collaboration role, representatives from national and regional organizations, consortia and fora may be invited to join JCA-Cloud.

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