A little humor before our message:
Why is the word “solution” so difficult for some to digest? True, I’m sure the word means different things to different people but to me it’s very straight-forward. Let me explain.
A “solution” is when the sum of parts collectively comprise a product or service that can be used or consumed without the need for additional parts. A car, for example, is a “solution”. Sure it needs gas and occasionally other consumable parts such as tires, oil changes or new wiper blades but the point-is that you can drive this “solution” off of the auto dealers lot ‘as is’. As technology relates, a computer is an example of a solution. It already has all the parts put together where you can go into your local computer shop and buy a computer, boot it up, and immediately begin using it. The hard drive, video card are all integrated and the operating system is already installed. All you do is some customization of your desktop and add services such as an internet provider or additional software packages. Simple and easy!
This concept of ‘piece-parts’ vs. ‘solutions’ is the irony of “the cloud”. Software as a Service (SaaS) applications are the dream of “solutions” realized. To non-technical persons they would not think anything of all the ‘piece-parts’ that were put together to create something that you just ‘drive-off-the-lot’ as my car analogy in the previous paragraph illustrates. And this is EXACTLY how it should be, in my humble opinion. All the technology involved to make a solution should be completely transparent to users and they should not care. It should just simply work.
I think far too often people fall in love with their ‘piece-part’ and think the world revolves only around their product or service when this is not true.
*Thinking to myself ironically* I guess Cloud Is A Fad and people won’t continue to demand “solutions”. I guess ease of use and simplicity will never work. Naw, never, not in a million years *more irony*. Microsoft Windows with simple point-and-click functionality will never catch on. Apple iPad’s with large touch screen interfaces and big buttons will never be adopted by the masses. And, of course, “the cloud” will never be used in the enterprise because it’s just for personal use like Facebook and G-Mail. It’s just a fad.
I guess the billions, probably even trillions, of dollars in total being spent on building cloud infrastructures and research are pipe dreams. I guess all the really, super smart technology companies like Microsoft and Oracle will continue to sell traditional on-premise software and not have an aggressive cloud strategy eventually. Wait, Microsoft introduced Office365 for cloud and Oracle’s Larry Ellison Reveals Oracle’s Public Cloud; Calls Salesforce The ‘Roach Motel’ Of Cloud Services.
It’s ON folks. The opportunities within the emerging cloud marketplace are tremendous. Whomever delivers the winning formula of offering “solutions” which are highly-effective, yet easy to use and digest will win. Plain and simple. ‘Piece-parts’ will remain just that, ‘parts’ with unrealized true potential just like a hard disk drive has no value without software. And software has no value without processing and storage.