What’s considered to be a cloud?

Posted on January 18th, 2014 by don under Cloud Computing.

Just passing by to clean out the span and I was motivated to write something.  Most of my blog postings are to be found over at www.itworldcanada.com

But I thought I would pose two questions:

1.  What is considered to be the defining characteristics of a system that could be called a cloud system?  There are no formal conformance criteria but there is the basic characteristics that have been defined by NIST (and are also embedded in the ISO/ITU emerging standards).  These include on demand self-service, network access, metered for pay as you go billing and capacity management, pooled resources, and elastic resource provision.  We could also add service-oriented, virtualized and automated to this list.

So, the question is: what existing systems out there meet these criteria?  Would this include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google and Bing search, etc.?  In other words, are all social networks considered to be cloud computing?

What about any email service?  You can set up an email account on demand over the Internet and there’s no limits on the number of emails you can send.  However, there are often limits on the size of the messages and the mailbox.  You often pay a fixed monthly charge for email services.  So, does that mean email is NOT a cloud?  Is the traditional local telephone network NOT a cloud if its billed monthly whereas long distance telephone calls are when charged by the minute?

2.  The second question is:  who are the early adopters (especially in Canada) of true cloud computing (i.e., who is using IaaS services, and who has applications installed in a PaaS mode of operation?)

Anyone want to dive into a discussion of these two items?




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