I’ll Pass on PaaS Without Open Standards

There’s been a lot of recent talk within the blogosphere taking note of the emerging Web-based, platform battle emerging between Salesforce.com and Microsoft. Dan Farber talked about in his blog yesterday.

While I’ll leave the potential landmine that is Benioff and Ray Ozzie slugging it out to other bloggers, I thought Dave Rosenberg brought up a great point about platform-as-a-service (PaaS) offerings in his blog on the topic. In it, he says:

I suppose one piece that is only halfway there would be the APIs for desktop applications. And one very clear missing piece is a way to integrate the PaaS with enterprise applications–and other SaaS applications.

This leads me to believe that integration is the key to PaaS…which also may mean that Workday was extremely wise in picking up the Cape Clear fire sale. It’s especially interesting in that once technology goes behind the firewall it doesn’t matter if it meets anyone else’s needs.

I couldn’t agree more with Rosenberg, though I’d add that open source and open-based standards will be the vehicle by which the next generation of SaaS and PaaS will deliver their interoperable results. The Web is a ubiquitous platform for applications of all kinds. The success of concepts like cloud computing and enterprise collaboration will depend on the continued penetration of open, standards-based development languages at the application layer.

Without it, the “cloud’ can’t truly support interoperability across solutions and organizations.

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