Listening to these observations, tinged with the hue of "true believer" status, the thought occured to me that cloud computing should have a natural partner in the open source community, where collaboration is central. So I did a bit of checking and in particular, tried to find out what the high priest of open source, Richard Stallman, had to say on the topic. A Google search quickly brought me to a September 30, 2008 item that appeared on CNET News entitled "Stallman: Cloud Computing is 'Stupidity' ". Stallman stated bluntly: "[C]loud computing is 'stupidity' that will ultimately will result in vendor lock-in and escalating costs." He then went on to observe:
(i) " 'The interesting thing about cloud computing is that we've redefined cloud computing to include everything that we already do' " (as quoted in the Guardian).
(ii) "[C]loud computing forces people to hand over control of their information to a third party. ... One reason you should not use Web applications to do your computing is that you lose control", he said. "It's just as bad as using a proprietary program."(iii) "Do your own computing on your own computer with a copy of a freedom-respecting program. If you use a proprietary program or somebody else's Web server, you're defenseless. You're putty in the hands of whoever developed that software."(iv) "It's stupidity. It's worse than stupidity: it's a marketing hype campaign," he said. "Somebody is saying this is inevitable--and whenever you hear somebody saying that, it's very likely to be a set of business campaigns to make it true."