Links to Some Cloud Computing Resources

I’d just like to highlight several links to key cloud computing resources on the net. These either contain things I’ve found useful or interesting or are from major players (and thus should be taken into account).

The first item is my own whitepaper on negotiating privacy, data residency and security in the cloud for New Zealand organisations. If you are looking at cloud computing for private or public sector organisations in New Zealand then this isn’t a bad place to start (if I do say so myself) though my thinking has moved on a little since then.

The Microsoft Virtual Academy is a set of great learning materials (including self-assessments) for Microsoft’s range of cloud products. While vendor and product specific it is still a great free resource, and Microsoft do have the greatest breadth of public cloud offerings in the marketplace at the moment.

Rackspace’s CloudU is a vendor neutral set of courses (including self-assessments and a completion certificate) on cloud computing curated by NZ’s Ben Kepes.

The Cloud Security Alliance is a not-for-profit that promotes security within cloud computing. Its membership is made up of most of the major players in cloud computing including Google, Microsoft, SalesForce etc. Regardless of that, they have produced a particularly useful questionnaire for assessing the security of your cloud service provider, the Cloud Assessments Initiative Questionnaire and some good Security Guidance.

The Cloud Standards Customer Council is a cloud end user advocacy group (its membership is made up of organisations who use cloud computing rather than provide it like the CSA), it has published a Practical Guide to Cloud Computing and a set of Cloud Computing Use Cases.

NIST (the USA National Institute of Standards and Technology) have come up with one of the most widely used definitions of cloud computing, and the US work on government cloud computing is probably the most advanced internationally. If you are interested in cloud computing in the public sector context this is probably the first place you should look. They have a number of useful documents including the US government’s Cloud Computing Technology Roadmap.

OASIS is a standards body that focuses on open standards for the global information society.  There are a number of OASIS committees that are relevant to cloud computing, but the one most concerned with it is the Identity in the Cloud Technical Committee which is interested in developing standards for identity management in cloud computing. Currently they have a range of use cases concerned with identity management in the cloud, which will be useful if this is an area you are working on.

If you have any other useful resources for cloud let me know!

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