NIST to preview collaborative standards portal at cloud forum

Two-day event also will present a road map for cloud computing adoption

The National Institute of Standards and Technology will preview a portal designed to foster collaborative development of cloud computing standards at a forum and workshop to be held at the agency’s headquarters this week.

NIST officials will give participants an update on the status of the Standards Acceleration to Jumpstart the Adoption of Cloud Computing (SAJACC) portal and present 24 use cases, said Lee Badger, NIST’s acting program manager of cloud computing.

Agency managers and industry executives will have the opportunity to comment on the next steps the government needs to take to develop cloud computing standards during the Cloud Computing Forum and Workshop II, which will be held Nov. 4-5 in Gaithersburg, Md.

Federal CIO Vivek Kundra and NIST Director Patrick Gallagher will present their vision for cloud computing standards during the first day of the forum.

NIST officials said they will introduce the agency’s strategy for developing a cloud computing road map in collaboration with other federal and industry stakeholders and will discuss the development of a neutral cloud computing reference architecture and taxonomy.

Subsequent panel discussions will consider the roles of standards organizations and ad hoc standards for cloud computing, key issues and potential solutions, security in the cloud, and international aspects of cloud computing.


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The workshop is a follow-up to the Cloud Computing Forum and Workshop hosted by NIST at the Commerce Department in May. That summit focused on the development of standards in cloud interoperability, data portability and security. NIST officials announced key initiatives at the summit, such as the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program and the intent to develop the SAJACC portal.

Earlier this week, the General Services Administration released FedRAMP security requirements for public comment. The interagency initiative seeks to provide a governmentwide certification process that would reduce costs and duplication when multiple agencies attempt to certify products and services for security compliance.

SAJACC is a collaborative technical initiative that will validate interim cloud computing specifications before they become formal standards. NIST will present a version of the SAJACC portal at the event.

“We are going to add functionally to the portal as time goes on,” Badger said. “We have focused a lot of our attention since May working on an initial set of use cases for the SAJACC portal.”

The use cases, which were written by a team of NIST researchers, will be available on NIST’s website during the workshop. They are working documents, textual descriptions and narratives that describe interactions between people or programs and cloud systems, Badger said.

The purpose of a use case is to gain a better understanding of how users interact with cloud systems. Plus, NIST officials want to get a better sense of what features cloud systems need to support interoperability, portability and security. Participants will discuss the standards relevant to cloud computing, such as Extensible Markup Language, HTML and Web Services Description Language.

NIST will be seeking feedback and new ideas from participants during breakout sessions on the second day of the workshop, held at a Holiday Inn in Gaithersburg.

About the Author

Rutrell Yasin is is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

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