Politics, not technology, is key barrier to grid computing

Politics, not technology, is key barrier to grid computing

A study conducted by grid technology firm Platform points to organisational politics as a key barrier to the commercial acceptance of shared computing.

With grid computing, enterprises can reduce IT costs and raise performance by harnessing idle computing power.

Platform surveyed 50 global companies that have either implemented grid computing technology or are evaluating it. The study finds that 89% of respondents feel that internal politics, such as 'server-hugging', create significant barriers to widespread grid adoption.

According to survey respondents, the top non-technical obstacles (ranked "high" or "very high") to grid computing include:
  • Perceived loss of control or access to resources (44%);
  • Perceived risks associated with enterprise-wide deployment (40%);
  • Perceived loss or reduction of budget dollars (33%).

Platform says the results imply a misalignment of corporate and IT objectives relating to strategic IT decisions. While CEOs measure success based on objectives like improving operational efficiency and launching new products to market faster, some individual departments are measuring success based on size of corporate IT resources and budget.

"Grid computing has the potential to provide very significant computing power at a low cost through infrastructure consolidation and cost control," says Dr. Umesh Harigopal, vice president and architect at Platform client JPMorgan Chase. "Unfortunately, some groups see using the grid as giving up some control over running their applications, and erosion of their resource empires. There are real cultural change problems to enterprise grids that will take time to overcome."

According to industry estimates, the worldwide grid computing market is estimated to grow from $180 million today to $4.1 billion by 2005.

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