I often hear people talking about Cloud Computing as an opposite to On-Premise. This is based on an incorrect assumption that one of the key characteristics of Cloud is that it is delivered from off-premise.
The above diagram shows the perception people have – that there is a choice to be made – choosing Cloud means sacrificing on premise, and choosing on-premise means sacrificing Cloud.
The reality is more like the above – we can choose for any workload whether to adopt Cloud or use more traditional approaches, and we can, separately, choose whether to run these work loads on -premise or elsewhere. This is not an all-or nothing proposition.
Speaking of all-or-nothing propositions, I really like what Gartner’s Lydia Leong had to say about bimodal IT. Her message is that we should not try to compromise our IT practices – use best-practice traditional approaches for traditional workloads, and best-practice “Cloudy” approaches for new workloads based on the New Style of IT. One of the biggest causes of difficulty in adopting new approaches to IT delivery is creating an anemic set of practices that can’t do anything well.
Go All-in when you can, and recognize that despite what the public-cloud-only vendors would have you believe, the location of the infrastructure is a completely independent decision from whether you choose to Go Cloud.