DotCloud: The Cloud's New Developer Hotshot? - InformationWeek
Cloud // Platform as a Service
10:31 PM
Connect Directly

DotCloud: The Cloud's New Developer Hotshot?

What does the winner of Structure 2011's startup competition have that Google App Engine,, and Heroku don't?

DotCloud, a platform for cloud developers, is the new kid in town, and it might get looked down upon by the established crowd.

Already resident on this block are: Google App Engine, a Python and Java platform;'s platform with its proprietary Apex language; and Microsoft's Windows Azure platform with Visual Studio tools geared to it. There's also Heroku, an agile cloud platform hosting 100,000 Ruby apps--it's now part of Salesforce. Don't forget Engine Yard, another Ruby platform, and PHPfog for PHP developers.

But DotCloud is different. Each of the players above tends to be language and environment specific. DotCloud is a generalist, bringing expertise in many open source components together with deployment skills for a broad set of languages, according to co-founder and CEO Solomon Hykes in an interview. They include Java, Ruby, PHP, Python, Perl, and the server-side JavaScript, Nopde.JS.

As another example, DotCloud will handle application connections to the relational database systems MySQL and Postgres; data caching systems Memcached and Membase; and big data systems Cassandra, MongoDB, Redis, Membase, Memcached, CouchDB, and Hadoop.

Hykes gave a four-minute pitch on his young company last week at the Launchpad startup competition, an annual feature of the Structure conference in San Francisco. In a field of 10 contenders, DotCloud won both the judges and audience voting as most promising startup.

The DotCloud platform lets developers assemble a software stack of their own preference, "one platform, any stack," said Hykes. He meant any open source software stack, and one example is the LAMP stack, with Linux, Apache Web Server, MySQL, and PHP. But DotCloud claims the integration skills on its 15-person staff to deploy many different stacks.

Hykes said DotCloud views an application as a set of services, not a set of modules of code. Developers upload their code to DotCloud where it's analyzed by its systems. The developer then assembles his DotCloud Build File, telling its form what services he needs within the applications. DotCloud has APIs that connect the application to various databases and other open source code components. By invoking the API, the DotCloud Build File will add an integrated service, instead of the developer needing to configure a database server or application server for a particular environment.

"Each time a developer uses a new stack, there's a constant weight of needing to configure it to work together for a new environment," said Hykes in the interview

1 of 2
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll