Confused by the Cloud? So was I.

In a quest to accurately describe Cloud Solutions, I learned that cloud computing means something different to each person. Descriptions vary and in many cases there is an inherent sense of mystery or uncertainly inferred when discussing cloud solutions. Some individuals even express fear when describing their self-created, science fiction version of this poorly defined term. It’s just not that complicated; your data is still on a server.

So, what is cloud computing? According to Wikipedia, cloud computing is internet-based computing in which large groups of remote servers are networked to allow sharing of data-processing tasks, centralized data storage, and online access to computer services or resources.

Clouds can be classified as public, private or hybrid:

  • Public Clouds are externally hosted. They provide technology infrastructure that is shared by multiple organizations. This business model reduces the overall computing cost by providing economies of scale. Are you using applications like Google, Amazon, Azure, or Office 365 today? If so, you are enjoying the public cloud.

  • Private Clouds can be on premise or externally hosted. They provide technology infrastructure that is dedicated to a specific organization and not shared. Externally hosted, private clouds are typically less expensive than on premise private clouds. Do you have your own on premise servers? Do you use servers that are hosted by a third party specifically for your use? If so, you are enjoying a private cloud.

  • Hybrid Clouds are environments where the technology infrastructure contains both public and private cloud solutions. Hybrid clouds are environments where cloud technologies vary depending on application requirements.

Cloud solutions continue to grow rapidly. According to Computerworld’s 2015 Forecast, cloud computing initiatives are the single most important initiative today in the IT departments surveyed. In addition, 42% of IT decision makers are planning to increase spending on cloud computing, with the greatest growth in enterprises with over 1,000 employees (52%).

What are your Cloud plans for 2015? With the right resources- it’s not complicated.