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Microsoft exec blasts ‘Open Cloud Manifesto’

A set of principles promoting cloud computing interoperability was sharply criticized by a Microsoft Corp. executive just days before its formal release last week.

Steven Martin, Microsoft's senior director of platform product management, said in a blog post before Sunday's unveiling of the Open Cloud Manifesto that the document was created in secret and that the company was asked to sign it without a chance to offer revisions.

He said that while Microsoft supports the need to create guidelines for cloud interoperability, it was “admittedly disappointed” in the process used to create the manifesto.

Nonetheless, the manifesto retains the backing of top technology vendors such as IBM, Sun Microsystems, VMware, Cisco Systems, SAP and EMC.

The six-page document contains six principles, which, among other things, call for the use of standards when creating cloud computing technologies and for vendors not to use “their market position to lock customers into their particular platforms.”

Reuven Cohen, founder and chief technologist at cloud computing start-up Enomaly Inc. and an author of the manifesto, said he was surprised at Microsoft's strong criticism.

Cohen said he and the other authors of the manifesto, whom he declined to identify, had “been in active discussions with Microsoft about the Open Cloud Manifesto” and that the company was one of the first to review it.

Stephen O'Grady, an analyst at Seattle-based RedMonk, called the manifesto “aspirational” and a step in the right direction in tackling potential barriers to the spread of cloud computing.

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