A little Uncloudy explanation of the Cloud

If you read any article about cloud computing there is a lot of confusion and speculation being written about this topic. Most will admit there is a huge amount of buzz and hype around the terms, but there is a lot of speculation as to its validity for mission critical data, reliability, and overall level of service. The truth of the matter is that much of the underlying infrastructure aren’t brand new concepts only the idea of getting resources through your network connection from offsite instead of a local network. Also this all encompassing term is being used to include any service that you receive remotely which for a lot of organizations there has been resources being consumed this way that are now being reclassified.

Virtualization, Storage area network (SAN), data security, data redundancy, hosting data remotely are all terms and concepts that have been around for a while now they are just being done a little different where the infrastructure isn’t as important as the application and hosting of the data. In an article titled Time to head for the cloud?, Bill Sexton the CIO British Gas Services states it this way:

“I predict that within five years the way we run our corporate IT will be significantly different,” he says. “In the future it will not matter where the software lives, and in my view if you still have it on site you’ll be throwing money away because you’ll be putting half of your resources into supporting the infrastructure. It’s not the infrastructure that matters ­ it’s the applications.”

straight-edges-and-little-fluffy-cloudsThere are many ways to look at the opportunities available by cloud computing. We aren’t going at the approach of redoing the way that you do things so much as introducing new ways handle upcoming technologies that are simply far more efficient and optimized for you and your customers. Maybe you already have video hosting and streaming technology, but how does it scale? With the onslaught of video becoming more popular and more video content being created at someone point it’s not going to make sense for you to manage it all locally. The same can be said for other assets. By no means am I suggesting that all assets should be moved to the cloud now or that it makes sense for all organizations, but it has to be something that you are at least toying with and beginning to get your feet wet in the technology.

Some of the best reads on Cloud Computing for the last week.

Keep the ‘cloud’ non-mission critical – Software-as-a-service (SaaS) is “several years away” from being enterprise-ready, but companies should begin experimenting with the technology, according to a Citrix executive.

Case Studies in Cloud Computing – Cloud computing can seem amorphous and hard to grasp — billowy white puffs of IT infrastructure. The best way to bring the trend into focus is through real-world business examples, and we’re beginning to see more of them.

Finally you have probably heard all about Google Chrome this week?  Since it came out Tuesday it has been talked about everywhere online.  Google Chrome: Browser or Cloud Operating System?

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