How to create self-driving private clouds

A few years ago, the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) outlined the five stages of self-driving vehicles. In actuality, there are six levels, but the zero level is no automation, so we will ignore that. The idea behind the different phases is to make it possible for us to get there in a reasonable, phased approach.

It’s unrealistic that the car manufacturers could go from where we are today to a fully autonomous car with no driver or even controls. Even if the automotive community could build an autonomous vehicle today, very few people would have enough trust to use a car with no controls. When it comes to a massive shift like this, crawl-walk-run is definitely the right approach — and that’s what the five stages are designed to do.

Similarly, with cloud computing, utopia is a cloud that runs itself. Resources can be provisioned, software upgraded and infrastructure optimized all without human intervention. That certainly seems like a nice vision, but there is no IT professional who would trust a fully autonomous cloud.

The journey to self-driving clouds needs to be gradual, like it is with automobiles, with different levels leading us to utopia. However, there is no society of cloud professionals working on an industry definition, so IT pros are left to take this journey with no map.

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