By now, you have probably heard of cloud computing. You may have even seen television commercials advertising cloud computing services. While there are a variety of services offered through cloud computing providers, everything has been shorted to just "the cloud." The cloud is a collection of third-party, secured servers where a company can story its data, host its website, or use productivity software without the high cost of having to buy the hardware and the software. The company leases its storage space through the cloud and only pays for what it uses.
To get an idea of how the cloud can benefit a business, think of how a company pays for electricity. Instead of every company having to buy their own power plant, they just pay for a metered service through the local electric company. The cloud is a metered computer storage service that saves a company money and allows the company to alter its storage capacity based on its needs. As a company grows, it can lease more storage space without the additional costs of having to buy more servers. If the company decides it does not need the extra space, it can just release its additional space back into the cloud. The cloud allows a company to conduct business without ever having to worry about the potentially crippling costs of maintaining its computer network.
Cloud technology is becoming the way of the future for the corporate world. With the cloud, you can have an entire computer network without having to invest in servers, cabling, or an army of IT support technicians. Your staff would be able to access critical data from anywhere in the world, and you could take on satellite locations that would all be able to share the company network. With cloud computing, a small business could have the same network functionality as a large corporation at a fraction of the cost.
To become more familiar with cloud computing and its benefits, take a look at the following links.
Making Cloud Computing More Efficient: An analysis of cloud computing and how it can be improved.
Privacy And Cloud Computing In Public Schools (PDF): A summary of a Fordham University report on the ability for cloud services to protect the information of school children and their families.
Cloud Adoption Carries Big Risks For Companies: Helping to identify the risks of cloud computing so that your company can be better protected.
Mobile Cloud Computing: IBM's comprehensive look at mobile cloud computing, including the many different platforms offered and the challenges users face.
Mobile Cloud: A very interesting look at the future of mobile cloud computing and how it will affect the way that retailers and website developers approach future projects.
California Fights Drought With Big Data, Cloud Computing: A discussion of a practical application of cloud computing in gathering the data the state of California needs to try and fight the worst drought in 100 years.
What Cloud Computing Really Means: A short history of cloud computing followed by fairly comprehensive definitions of the various kinds of cloud computing in use around the world.
Clash Of The Clouds: An interesting view of the future of cloud computing that sees Microsoft getting involved in epic battles with larger Internet companies such as Google for control over the storage of the world's data.
The Internet Industry Is On A Cloud - Whatever That May Mean: The Wall Street Journal does what it does best by putting a financial perspective on the future of the cloud computing world. One of the more entertaining elements of this article is how unashamed the Wall Street Journal is about not understanding cloud technology at all.
5 Things To Consider When Weighing Public Cloud Against Private Cloud: An overview of some of the security concerns that could be involved when choosing the type of cloud you will use.
Cloud Computing Advantages: Some of the more prevalent financial advantages to using cloud computing for your company.
Cloud Basics For Nonprofits And Libraries: An extremely comprehensive resource that outlines the features, benefits, and challenges of cloud computing for nonprofit organizations and municipalities.