When I met Tom Nolle he was one of the few analysts talking about bridging IT/Cloud/Business Services and Network Services. This was a couple of years before ETSI NFV kicked-off and a few years after we launched EnterpriseWeb.
In his latest blog post, he brings these tenets together once again http://blog.cimicorp.com/?p=2345 He concludes “To me, it’s clear that diverse infrastructure—servers of different kinds, different cloud software, different network equipment making connections among VNFs and to users—would demand multiple VIMs even under the limited ETSI vision of supporting legacy elements… Once you get to that conclusion, then orchestration at the higher layer is more complicated and more essential, and models are the only path that would work.” (The whole post is worth reading)
Agreed! Service Providers need an application-level abstraction, which uses models to de-couple their solutions from explicit deployments otherwise they’ll simply re-create their silos in the cloud!
Perspective-wise, it’s important to understand that the models are not adding complexity, the complexity is native to the service provider domain and the new requirements. The models provide testable and executable representations of that complexity. A platform like CloudNFV provides the high-level programming environment (modeling, run-time, management and shared libraries/tools/services) to make this possible.
The conventional Telecom tangle of software and hardware spaghetti (aka “Big Ball of Mud”) is the real enemy. Holding on to it too long is the real existential risk.