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Cloud Computing Demystified

Cloud Computing Demystified

Cloud computing must surely be the technology of the future in the computing field, due to its many advantages. It may however come as a big surprise to many people that it actually does not have anything to do with clouds, space, aircraft, or the high-altitude positioning of devices. It is true that satellites are used to a certain extent in computer communication but that is the only way in which clouds relate to this type of computing.

The origin of “cloud” in the cloud computing context comes from science/maths. In elementary graphs, or basic XY plots, the clusters of points are called “point clouds”. In astronomy, a dense accumulation of gas and particles in space is called a nebula (which is Latin for "mist" or "cloud"). Similarly in physics the indeterminate position of electrons round an atomic kernel is known as a “cloud", and so on. So when this definition is applied to the field of computing, a cluster or network of computers is known as a “cloud” of computers. Hence the term cloud computing which describes computing performed by networks of computers, whose members are sufficiently near to each other, all across the globe. (The clusters may also be inter-connected, which leads to a global network of communicating computers).

So the computers in the “Cloud” are physically on the earth itself. When it is necessary to take an abstract view (as in the case of planning, software design and budgeting exercises) the physical details are not relevant and symbols are of the most use, as they convey the intended meaning clearly, but use very little space and don’t give unnecessary details.

Why Is Cloud Computing So Popular These Days?

4 main advantages of cloud computing

  1. It is a much more efficient use of computers, so fewer computers needed in operation than currently needed to meet the world’s computing requirements;
  2. Energy savings from using fewer computers, as a direct result of point 1, above;
  3. Cost savings, as a direct result of both 1 and 2 above;
  4. Helps combat climate change – the slowdown/reduction of global warning (due to point 2 above).

These are all very important points, which make cloud computing one of the most valuable of modern technologies.


Picture courtesy of www.emc.com

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