Cloud Computing 101

>For weeks now I receive at least one email everyday mentioning cloud computing. I was curious but not motivated to find out more. Finally seeing a flurry of tweets I decided to look this up. I went into it thinking its a product that is being marketed hard and fast.

I was so wrong (ya a true duh moment) and not alone in the “I don’t know what cloud computing is?”.  VerizonOne survey IT professional in 2009 and revealed that 41% of senior IT professionals admitted they didn’t know about cloud computing. I am sure this number has decreased since then. Compute world predicts this as one of the trends with the most promise in 2011.

What is cloud computing?
Cloud computing from what I understand is Internet based computing technology that uses Internet and remote servers for data and applications. Users (consumers and businesses) can use applications from any computer through the Internet on demand. This is the new buzz and is being forecast as the next big thing in the technology industry. Cloud gives the opportunity for collaboration without boundaries. Companies can increase capacity without investing a lot in infrastructure. More and more companies will jump into this bandwagon and will promote integration of services across borders. Services can be offered as software (SaaS – software as service), platform (PaaS – platform as service) or as infrastructure (IaaS – Infrastructure as a service).
 

Who is in the cloud?

Google
Microsoft
Hewlett Packard
IBM
Salesforce
Amazon

Why it works?
  • User really does not have to know the technology behind the services
  • Can be used by anyone over the Internet from anywhere
  • Low cost when compared to owning the infrastructure in house
  • Maintenance is easier since its not installed locally in each user’s computer.

What are some concerns?

  • Dependency on the Internet
  • Loss of privacy (providers can monitor or control the services)
  • Compliance to regulations (more expenses involved when trying to be compliant with regulations)
  • Security when its being managed over the network or outside infrastructure

Where can I get more information?
Bird-watching in the cloud
What is cloud computing?
InfoWorld
IBM

(Please note this is based on what I learnt in the last few days out of curisoity. This is not everything about cloud … just a short intro.)

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