Reselling Your Cloud Instances

This post is a hoax, it was published on April Fool's Day.

One beautiful afternoon in March, I was onboard a Metra train on my way home from CohesiveFT’s offices in downtown Chicago. I was reading a book on my Kindle, and little did I know that I was about to find out something huge that may soon change the IT landscape forever.

Not too far from my seat was a gentleman playing Solitaire on his laptop (I know, I know, no one is perfect). It looked like he had a conference call to attend, but since he thought his Solitaire was more important, he put his phone on speakerphone and turned up the volume, having placed the phone on a seat next to him. I have been trying to ignore the call but it was so loud one couldn’t do much about it - volume was set that high, I am telling you.

The call turned out to be one between all 7 US major cloud computing providers and top Wall Street firms. Apparently, a similar call happened earlier that day between European cloud providers and London-based representatives of pretty much the same banks.

As you might have already guessed from the title of this post, they were discussing ability to resell cloud instances (in infrastructure-as-a-service context). While providers will focus on implementing the actual mechanism how an instance can be “reassigned” to another account, the role of banks here will be to turn this into a new class of commodity that can be traded. Essentially, cloud providers as a group were pitching a new asset class to the investment bankers and wanted them to make the market for this commodity.

Here is how they said it’s going to work from technical perspective.

Say you have an instance in the cloud. There will be an API call that would be an “offer” - you are saying you want to sell this instance at such-and-such price. Someone else may have an outstanding “bid” for a similar instance. When there is a match, a trade will be executed: your old instance is going to be terminated, bidder’s image will be placed exactly in the slot your instance used to occupy, and then bidder’s image will be started.

The key they emphasized was that it was not about customers buying capacity from various providers at dynamic prices. It was about customers’ ability to resell an instance to another customer. At any price a buyer would be willing to pay! Also, providers said that if they ever get a request for a lot of capacity while they can’t satisfy it quickly enough, they would be willing to buy back capacity from their own customers on the open market.

This is obviously huge! To read more, please see here.

Categories: fun |