Cloud Computing

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Davis – Farooq Khan – Cloud Computing|
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The information technology industry during its short existence has witnessed many developments in software, hardware and processes. Perhaps the biggest development that the software industry has experienced is the recent emergence of Cloud Computing. Cloud Computing can be defined as the process through which software applications, data storage and processing capacity are accessed over the internet. Attaining access to the latter services through a network of remote servers instead of a local server is indeed a unique quality that is inherently present in Cloud Computing technology. Although the concept of Cloud Computing was developed by John McCarthy in 1969, the technology was not utilized by organizations when it was initially conceived as it was misunderstood and because it’s viability as a functioning technology was questioned (Cantu , 2011). However, recent developments in universal high speed bandwidth, the harmonization of universal software standards and the emergence of virtualization technology have eliminated barriers that previously hindered the growth of Cloud Computing and which restricted the viability of adopting the technology on a mass scale. Cloud Computing technology is primarily utilized in the following three manners; Software as A Service (SAAS), Platform as A Service (PAAS), Infrastructure as A Service (IAAS). The preceding three methods of utilization are unique in terms of the benefits organizations accrue through implementing the technology within their organization structure and in terms of the flexibility a user obtains. Software as a service allows users to access existing online applications for free or on a subscription basis while Platform as a service permits users to create their own applications and Infrastructure as a service allows users to operate applications on cloud hardware of their choosing. I have used all three variants of cloud computing technology as I have used Google Docs which is a form of SAAS, Google App Engine which is a variant of PAAS and due to my employment I partook in IAAS as I used applications that were operating on a virtual server. Cloud Computing technology can also be broken down into the following three segments; Public Cloud, Hybrid Cloud and Private Cloud. Public cloud refers to a form of cloud computing where resources are provided on a self-service basis through the internet. Hybrid cloud computing is primarily utilized by organizations and it is a blend of private and public clouds. Private cloud is also primarily used by organizations as it allows the organizations to retain control over the security of its data. Organizations are able to retain control as the private cloud operates within the boundaries of the organization’s IT protocols and within the organization’s fire wall. Although Cloud Computing technology is currently the rage within the information technology industry, the technology’s early life (1960’s 1999) was rather uneventful as the necessary platforms such as high-speed internet were not developed. Cloud computing technology garnered mainstream attention when Sales Force effectively integrated the technology within its infrastructure and processes in 1999 (Britton, 2011). Amazon provided further impetus to the growth of Cloud Computing by launching Amazon Web Services in 2002 and Elastic Compute Cloud in 2006 (Holden, 2012). Amazon Web Services demonstrated to organizations that cloud computing is a viable alternative to fulfill their storage and processing requirements and Elastic Compute Cloud was described by Jeremy Allaire, CEO of Brightcove, as being “The first widely accessible cloud computing infrastructure service" (Kimmel, 2012). The growth of Cloud Computing was provided further stimulus in 2009 as Google embraced the technology and created the popular Google Apps application (Holden, 2012). It would be safe to state that most technology experts...
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