John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Another One of These Cloud Computing Rants and You’ve Got Yourself a Stand-Up Routine, Larry

ellisonThe passing of a year hasn’t much changed Oracle (ORCL) CEO Larry Ellison’s opinion of cloud computing. Remarking on the industry’s sudden fascination with the concept at Oracle OpenWorld last September, Ellison reduced it to a thin sheen of windshield condensation.

“The interesting thing about cloud computing is that we’ve redefined cloud computing to include everything that we already do,” Ellison said. “I can’t think of anything that isn’t cloud computing with all of these announcements….These people who are writing this crap are out there. They are insane. I mean it is the stupidest. Is it ‘Oh, I am going to access data on a server on the Internet.’ That is cloud computing?…Maybe I’m an idiot, but I have no idea what anyone is talking about. What is it? It’s complete gibberish. It’s insane. When is this idiocy going to stop?”

In conversation with former Sun (JAVA) CEO Ed Zander at a Churchill Club event a little over a year later, Ellison expanded on those remarks, suggesting that if the cloud is anything, it’s a cloud of BS.

Cloud’s water vapor….Cloud computing is not only the future of computing, it is the present and the entire past of computing.

…Salesforce.com has been around for a decade. And so has NetSuite…and people are saying, “Well, that’s cloud computing.” Google is cloud computing. Everyone is cloud computing….Everything is in the cloud now….It’s this nonsense.

…But it’s not water vapor. All it is is a computer attached to a network. What are you talking about? I mean, what do you think Google runs on?…Water vapor? It’s databases and operating systems and memory and microprocessors and the Internet!

…And the VCs, I love the VCs. [They ask their start-ups] “Oh…is that cloud?” [And the start-ups go] “Oh! Oh! Microsoft Word! Change ‘Internet’ to ‘cloud’! Mass change. Give it back to these nitwits on Sand Hill Road.”

…What do you mean by “cloud computing”?…All the cloud is is computers on a network.

Our industry is so bizarre. They just change a term and they think they’ve invented technology….You can’t just come up with a [slogan] like “Let’s call that ‘cloud.” [But] it sure beats innovation.”

Below, the full video. Ellison’s rant begins around the 45:54 mark.


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald