The big three clouds—Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud—all address the same issues of scale, performance, and economics, while also attempting to attract the same workloads from the same pool of enterprise, government, and academic customers. So it’s not really surprising that the compute and storage infrastructure, database and middleware services these three companies have created look very similar.

But they’re not the same, and that creates friction that prevents applications from being as portable across these clouds as many companies had hoped. Frustrated by this, researchers at the University of Maryland and the US Army Research Laboratory have developed an open-source toolkit called RPAC, short for Reproducible and Portable Analytics in the Cloud, which brings with it a bit of the cloud-agnosticism everyone is trying to avoid . maligned vendor lock-in enjoyed by the big clouds to the same extent – we’ve argued…

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