What is cloud computing?
Cloud computing is a popular buzz-phrase on the internet, with a Google search revealing 103 million occurrences of the term. Cloud computing refers to delivering on-demand computing services, originally storage, and now more recently processing power and apps, over the internet, with companies using this on a pay-as-you-go basis. The ‘cloud’ in cloud computing has its origins in network diagrams that draw the internet as a fluffy cloud.
History of cloud computing
Despite the modern popularity of cloud computing, the notion of computing over a network goes some decades back to 1961. An MIT professor, John McCarthy, considered a ‘founding father’ of artificial intelligence, in an address at their centennial celebration prophetically spoke: “Computing may someday be organized as a public utility just as the telephone system is a public utility. Each subscriber needs to pay only for the capacity he actually uses, but he has access to all programming languages characteristic of a very large system … Certain subscribers might offer service to other subscribers … The computer utility could become the basis of a new and important industry.”
The first use of the actual term cloud computing is more modern dating to August 9th, 2006 at the Search Engine Strategies Conference. It is credited to Google CEO Eric Schmidt who said: “What’s interesting [now] is that there is an emergent new model…. It starts with the premise that the data services and architecture should be on servers. We call it cloud computing – they should be in a ‘cloud’ somewhere. And that if you have the right kind of browser or the right kind of access, it doesn’t matter whether you have a PC or a Mac or a mobile phone or a BlackBerry or what have you – or new devices still to be developed – you can get access to the cloud.”