2010.. Cloud computing.. What is cloud computing & how does it work? Let me begin with a cloud computing definition, a diagram, then an overview of cloud computing companies, of who does what and who to watch in 2010.
Cloud Computing Definition
Cloud computing is a facility of services, software, or infrastructure, delivered via the Internet in a pay-per-use and self-service way.
Let me show you a diagram of cloud computing :
Two existing end-user services markets, delivered from the cloud
Software Platform as a Service
|Abstracted middleware infrastructure|
Virtual Infrastructure as a Service
|Abstracted virtual server/grid-like infrastructure|
Physical Infrastructure as a Service
|Traditional hosting model (dedicated server or dedicated virtual server)|
Its core benefit is instant deployment, offering immediate easy access to company data from any location worldwide. Combined with this, other important benefits are: self-service: the fact a company, a department or an individual can use it without long-term commitment, for only a marginal cost. Pay as you go: When things work to satisfaction, the applications are instantly scalable as needed.
Cloud computing is popular with startups, is a perfect fit to small business’ buying behavior, and will completely topple IT of the past. Also large firms have been experimenting with cloud computing, even when still anchored in classic data management technologies, However, while the benefits of cloud computing just beg for trial, senior executives and IT departments are still weary of security issues and control, and rightly so.
Cloud Computer Vendors To Watch 2010
Silicon Valley’s venture capital firms bet on software virtualization, cloud computing vendors and their security providers for 2010 and the years to come, the New York Times reported two days ago in ‘Following Venture Capital for Signs of Tech to Come’. Cloud computing company stocks should be of interest as well.
In a recent webinar, the research firm Forrester explains that the leading Platform as a Service providers today are Google, Salesforce.com and Microsoft. Also worth noting are Coghead, Bungee, LongJump, EngineYard and IBM. Salesforce is pushing hosted apps and what it calls Platform as a Service, to help developers create new software in the cloud.
Besides Salesforce, Amazon will be the most familiar to enterprise IT. The leading Infrastructure as a Service cloud computing provider today is Amazon, with its Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and storage in the cloud. However, also worth noting in this category are Rackspace, AT&T, and Joyent. Further, Terremark, Layered Technologies, Fortress ITX and XCalibre operate ‘behind the scene’ in the hosting business that fuels and manages the cloud.
And there are others of note. 3Tera is the maker of award-winning AppLogic, a cloud computing platform. AppLogic allows IT professionals to develop and deploy online applications in minutes, using only a browser to manage and scale on demand fully distributed systems and deliver security and business continuity for all applications, while fully controlling their cloud computing environment. It works on physical and virtualized services. And then there is Akamai which offers application performance services that speed up apps for users of cloud services.
Cloud Computing ~ Pie in the Sky ?
Of course, there are other cloud computing vendors working behind the scenes and new start-ups that may take some limelight in the year to come, however, the main events in 2010 are likely to happen amongst the clouds of those mentioned here.
By Vera Lang, 2010