Paper Clarifies PaaS for Federal IT Buyers

Monday, February 06, 2012

Kevin L. Jackson

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NJVC, one of the largest information technology solutions providers supporting the U.S. Department of Defense, and Virtual Global, a premier provider of software and cloud computing platform solutions for a variety of industry and federal customers, announce the release of a joint white paper, “Platform as a Service (Paas): What Is It? Why Is It So Important?.” 

The paper clarifies the confusion surrounding PaaS for IT decision makers in the federal government. The National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST) suggests PaaS as a component of the Federal Cloud Computing Reference Architecture, but one major challenge exists: Most buyers do not understand what PaaS is, why it is important and how it can help federal agencies cut development costs by more than 50 percent.

Federal Chief Information Officer Steven VanRoekel said that platform as a service is the next major value set for federal cloud computing, and it also aligns closely with his Shared Services initiative to knock down stovepipe software and save money,” said Kevin Jackson, co-author and general manager, NJVC cloud services. “I hope that this whitepaper will help raise awareness of its importance in the federal marketplace.”

Many PaaS vendors require their customers to make long-term commitments to proprietary infrastructures. Some early adopters of PaaS unknowingly have already made casual, long-term commitments to infrastructure providers.

“It's somewhat like buying gum at the counter, but needing to rent the store for 10 years,” said Cary Landis, co-author and Virtual Global senior platform architect and founder. “That is why NIST is stressing the importance of openness and portability. IT buyers must understand PaaS to make the right decisions early.”

PaaS makes it possible for software developers to participate in the cloud. Until recently, the cloud has been dominated by big email and infrastructure providers selling commodity services. 

“PaaS changes the landscape—it opens the playing field to hundreds of thousands of software developers and integrators, giving them a way to actively participate,” according to Jackson.

“Whereas the first wave of cloud computing was about consolidating data centers, the PaaS wave is about consolidating applications. It will be a more complex ride, but the savings will be greater,” Landis said.

Download the white paper at no cost at http://www.slideshare.net/kvjacksn/njvcvirtual-global-paas-white-paper. NJVC and Virtual Global are team members on the GovCloud initiative.

Cross-posted from Cloud Musings

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