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Jul 14, 2009

Things You Probably Don't Know About Cloud Storage and Computing - Cloud computing

Cloud computing serves up computing power, data storage or applications from one data center location over a grid to thousands or millions of users on a subscription basis.

This general kind of cloud—for example, services provided online by Amazon EC2, Google Apps and—is known as a "public" cloud because any business or individual can subscribe. Private cloud computing is a different take on the mainstream version, in that smaller cloudlike IT systems within a firewall offer similar services, but to a closed internal network.

This network may include corporate or division offices, other companies that are also business partners, raw-material suppliers, resellers, production-chain entities, and other organizations intimately connected with a corporate mother ship.

Public or private, cloud computing is getting the IT industry excited. Gartner analysts in March 2009 said global cloud services revenue could move beyond $56.3 billion this year—from $46.4 billion in 2008—and grow to $150.1 billion in 2013. IBM Vice President of Cloud Services Ric Telford offers eWEEK readers his take in the slide show.