There are many patterns, or categories, in the world of cloud computing that you can use to meet the needs of your enterprise architecture. Some solve specific problems, such as security-as-a-service or testing-as-a-service, and some provide complete platforms, such as platform-as-a-service or infrastructure-as-a-service. They all have trade-offs and different problems that each solves. However, you must consider them all in light of your architecture.
So, the categories of service are storage, database, information, process, application, platform, integration, security, management/governance, testing, and infrastructure. The figure shows how they relate.
[ This article is excerpted from David Linthicum's book "Cloud Computing and SOA Convergence in Your Enterprise." Get a copy today! | Stay up on the cloud with InfoWorld's Cloud Computing Report newsletter. ]
You can further break them down into fine-grained solutions, or those providers who solve very specific problems that alone cannot be considered a platform. Or into coarse-grained providers, or those that, unto themselves, are a complete platform.