How many more surveys are there going to be on the state of the cloud market? And how many will it take before IT managers give an answer that all manufacturers and cloud providers want to hear - that cloud computing is the methodology of the future.

Just last week, the newly formed Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) revealed that only about 20 percent of British IT managers understood what was meant by cloud computing, just a few days after a survey from CA found that only 20 percent of European were committed to the cloud as an underlying methodology, while 11 percent of them considered it a fad.

The hesitancy shown by IT managers is in stark contrast to Gartner's famous prediction that by 2012, 20 percent of enterprises will have no IT departments at all and conduct all their business in the cloud. For that to happen, there'd have to be a pretty rapid shift in attitude by IT managers and some of the uncertainty would have to disappear.

Bertolt Brecht once famously said that governments didn't like the decisions made by it people they should dissolve the electorate and choose another. One occasionally gets the impression that many of the industry would like to do the same to the IT managers who consistently fail to see the attraction of moving to the cloud.

There are clearly some questions to answer: there does appear to be widespread belief that cloud security is inherently less secure - a situation that was not helped when the former technical head of the US's National Security Agency said that he didn't trust the cloud - but it's not just a question of security, there are plenty of other factors: governance and privacy, network latency, interoperability and portability for users to grapple with.

There are some major players who have invested heavily in the cloud - last week Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said that the company had "bet on the cloud"  - so the chances are that its going to be a dominant methodology in years to come.<

But, I'm sure we're going to see many more surveys reflecting the fact that CIOs and IT managers are confused about some aspects of cloud computing or hesitant about other features of cloud and the vendors should be more rigorous about addressing those concerns before continuing to talk up the future path towards cloud computing.

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