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City University London joins consortium to develop standard cloud computing performance indicators

City University London is the first European institution to join the Cloud Services Measurement Initiative Consortium (CSMIC).
by Luke Nava

City University London is the first European institution to join the Cloud Services Measurement Initiative Consortium (CSMIC). This worldwide group of academic, governmental and industrial organisations - part of the Cloud Commons initiative - is developing a set of business-centric performance indicators, to provide IT professionals with a standardised method for measuring and comparing cloud computing services.

City's Centre for Human Computer Interaction (HCI) Design was invited into CSMIC having already provided consultancy on cloud computing to CA Technologies, a New York-based software company that co-founded the consortium in May 2010.

The University's role in the consortium will be to develop a software dashboard that enables Chief Information Officers (CIOs) to assess how well all of their cloud services are running from a single interface. It will use a simple traffic light system to highlight successful and problem areas, while enabling users to rate the quality of service they are receiving from their cloud suppliers.

Professor Neil Maiden, Head of the Centre for HCI Design, who will lead the project, says: "Cloud computing promises to make many IT services simpler to manage and more cost-effective, but businesses are often deterred from using them because there is a lack of standards across vendors and few methods of assessing their return on investment. CSMIC is addressing this problem, so we are pleased to be involved.

"The key to widespread adoption of the cloud is communicating its value to senior management and highlighting the benefits of previous deployments. The software that we're working on will make this possible."

The Centre for HCI Design's extensive experience in requirements engineering and service-oriented architecture (SOA) will be critical to the project, in assessing which cloud performance metrics CIOs want to measure.

CSMIC members include co-founders, Carnegie Mellon Silicon Valley and CA Technologies, Accenture, Cask LLC, Data Security Council of India (DSCI), International Association of Outsourcing Professionals (IAOP), Mycroft, State of Colorado's Office of CIO, Stony Brook University, NY, TM Forum, and the University of Melbourne in Australia.

For more information about the consortium, visit http://cloudcommons.com.

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.