I came across an interesting article by Paul Krill of Infoworld the other day which the author made a important point in regards to developers moving into the cloud. Krill refers to a recent survey that indicates "61 percent of developers report that at least some of their IT resources will move to a public cloud within the next year". This is further re-enforced by analysts like Forrester, who are also referenced in the article.
That percentage alone, is a good indicator that cloud development, and in particular ,feature-rich platforms must make it easy for the millions of existing application developers to start developing in the cloud.
Jeff Cogswell, from Ziff Davis recently tried out developing in the cloud. His experience mirrored many of my initial impressions which I first began developing on the Force.com platform. Yes, there is a mind-shift to get used to with everything no longer happening on your local machine, but you quickly become comfortable with a familiar Java or C-like syntax of Apex making you feel, as Jeff stated, "quite at home using it."
The ability to easily shift between platforms and languages is increasingly important in a modern developers bag-of-tricks. Krill, in his article refers to another survey which suggests the hybrid cloud—a combination of existing on-premise and cloud application—will continue to play a bit part in IT departments, and therefore the developers, lives.
Tonight is the first of a series of Developer Meetups with direct intention of getting people to experience developing on the platform. I am sure there will be a strong mix of existing application developers and veteran Force.com developers. It should be a great night. I hope to see you there soon.