The Open Data Center Alliance, an independent consortium of global IT leaders, has announced its formation and previewed the Alliance’s 0.5 vendor-agnostic Usage Model Roadmap. The Roadmap comprises 19 prioritized usage models that address emerging technical requirements for data center and cloud infrastructure and is based on open, interoperable solutions that can be sourced from multiple vendors and interoperate across data centers. Members of the Open Data Center Alliance – with over $50 billion in collective IT spending – are committed to this Roadmap to guide their data center and cloud purchasing decisions today and for planning their data center deployments of the future. The Alliance is led by a Steering Committee comprised of global IT leaders – including BMW; China Life; Deutsche Bank; JPMorgan Chase; Lockheed Martin; Marriott International, Inc.; National Australia Bank; Shell; Terremark; and UBS – who are joined by more than 70 members representing a broad array of industries. Intel Corporation serves as the Alliance’s Technical Advisor.

"This new end user Alliance puts the power of designing the data center into the hands of IT managers,” said Matt Eastwood, group vice president, Enterprise Platform Research at IDC. “The Open Data Center Alliance represents the first time such a significant number of end users are committing to an industry organization with the specific goal of defining data center and cloud usage models in an open, industry-standard and multi-vendor fashion."

The Open Data Center Alliance has three levels of membership: Steering Committee, Contributor and Adopter membership. Adopter-level membership in the Alliance is available to anyone who is building cloud or data center infrastructure and is unencumbered by vendor interests. Alliance members have the opportunity to review and comment on the Usage Model Roadmap prior to public distribution, and have access to members-only events and Alliance membership networking opportunities. The Alliance also plans to drive extensive vendor engagement to ensure that Alliance Roadmap and usage model requirements reflect the full scope of industry capability.

"With over 70 total members – and that number is expected to grow every day – we believe the Open Data Center Alliance will quickly become a leading voice of the IT community,” said Marvin Wheeler, chief strategy officer, Terremark, and Open Data Center Alliance chairman and secretary. “As a member of this Alliance, Terremark is helping to set the direction for how emerging technologies are developed and implemented in the future."

"Lockheed Martin is committed to leveraging partnership and innovation to meet its customer missions from reducing costs to increasing performance and optimizing service delivery. The Open Data Center Alliance will facilitate collaboration and provide a roadmap to industry and government to influence cloud and data center infrastructure and technical requirements,” said Curt Aubley, vice president and CTO of Cyber Security & NexGen Innovation, Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Solutions, and Open Data Center Alliance president. “We are pleased to be taking a lead role in the organization to work with Alliance companies while also influencing adoption of cloud computing in government."

In support of its mission, the Alliance has established five technical work groups focused on infrastructure, management, security, services, and government and ecosystem. Each workgroup will fully define the requirements of each prioritized usage model toward the future delivery of a detailed technical documentation suite to be utilized by vendors and members as guidance for deployments. In addition, the working groups are chartered to finalize the current 0.5 Roadmap with a public delivery of the Roadmap and initial usage models in Q1’11.

"Our experience in the industry through leadership of dozens of industry organizations has demonstrated that when companies work together, innovation is accelerated," said Kirk Skaugen, vice president and general manager of the Data Center Group at Intel. "The Open Data Center Alliance has a unique opportunity to take collaboration to a new level, allowing managers of cloud and data center infrastructure to drive a unified voice of technical requirements for the industry. We're honored to serve as a technical advisor to the organization and are committed to working with Alliance members towards delivery of their mission."

To facilitate member discussion on Roadmap development, the Alliance Technical Workgroups are hosting a webcast series based on the five Usage Model categories. The first webcast, scheduled for November 17, will be publicly-available and will cover the Usage Model Roadmap development process and progress. Subsequent webcasts covering each Usage Model category will be available only to Alliance members. To sign up for a webcast or to join the Alliance,