Cloud computing congealed in the gutters of some Cupertino back alley, borne in the slime and muck cast off by a billion machines working to process the Internet through clogged tubes. In fact, our generation’s genius laureate has been talking about the cloud for quite a long time.
Like the first tetrapods emerged from the murk to walk on land, cloud computing has evolved into a more dynamic, versatile platform. There is the computing part, which is still fairly niche, but then there’s cloud hosting, cloud storage, virtual private servers (VPS), the list goes on.
The recent turmoil in the industry has been a debate about the public cloud versus the private cloud and which one presents more value to the people utilizing them.
The cloud brings a number of challenges and benefits with it, and IT organizations have undergone an intense disruption in the market for their own tools and the services they sell to other businesses. Deloitte has released a report tracking the changes in IT for digital business that provides more detailed information. Rackspace, one of the leaders in the cloud industry, has released its own app for android phones which allow users to access their cloud files and servers while on the go.
The private cloud is most often used by a single entity, be that a corporation, organization or individual. It can be managed internally or by a third-party provider but is only accessible by people who have the credentials to get in. My Google Music account is kind of a private cloud; only I can access it and its raison d’etre is to play my music I’ve loaded to my Google account. The downside to private clouds is that because users have to purchase them, build them and oversee their upkeep, you may as well just buy a regular server and save money on “cloud” functionality since the on-hands management wipes out the benefit.
The public cloud, on the other hand, fits the cloud-computing bill a bit more snugly. Service providers make applications, storage and other resources available to the public through the Internet and can either charge for access to that cloud or offer it for free. Gmail and Facebook are some of the most popular public clouds, with services like Dropbox gaining traction in the larger market.
Well, both. And neither.
The cloud is here; it is not a question “if” or “when” anymore. As company adoption of clouds gains traction, it’s becoming clear that the solution for many businesses is a hybrid cloud – rather, a combination of public and private clouds that link back to a core and with each other to deliver information across a matrix of servers. As the cloud concept grew, analysts speculated that businesses and companies would adopt a c loud service for their operations, but what we are seeing is the adoption of multiple types of cloud servers; a thrilling development.
It is also a confusing one.
The cloud was hyped and sold as a panacea to storage and accessibility problems within companies and what’s being shown now is that it takes at least two to tango in the cloud. On-premises solutions and cloud servers often work together to provide the streamlined promise of cloud computing. While it’s certain that the cloud will continue to integrate itself into the daily lives of businesses and consumers, on the back end, we will likely be seeing dual assets – both cloud-enabled and standard – solutions for the foreseeable future.