IT in the Cloud, the next Frontier…
In this article I will try to describe what Cloud actually is in the IT sense, and why it is a “hot” topic at the moment. My attempt to standardize something that is constantly changing and in some instances only resembles something else, reminded me of the great poem by a Russian writer Vladimir Mayakovski called “A Cloud in Trousers”. Like in the poem itself, something is constantly changing, but instead of feelings towards another person, here we have rapid change of technology. There are hundreds of definitions circling the internet, and I would like to add my personal view about this whole thing.
Imagine that each “unit”, “small piece”, whether it is hardware or software, is one drop of water. Everything that represents some thought or matter, light impulse, bit, or electromagnetic wave in general, all is just a small peace but then again it is also something that is a whole. From a safe distance, like a cloud in the sky, we see that the shape of is constantly changing, almost undetectable. The whole is there, but the shape is changing within seconds. Everything is there in one pile, but then again, where exactly and with what is it connected depends on the “wind”, in other words on the needs of the client.
In any case, there are three types of Cloud, depending on the service they provide:
- The Snow (IaaS): “Infrastructure as a Service” represents a service where mostly hardware is rented to you (for example a computer, disk, memory, CPU), software a bit less (for example operating system) and how will all that connect and function depends entirely on you.
- Hale (PaaS): in this case the goal is to sell you so called “platform” for a certain time: everything is already “set” for you to write programs, shoot movies, or make your own cell phone game.
- Rain (SaaS): last but not least, very important (read: profitable) is to rent the software itself- few examples come to mind: skype, wapp, viber. But several questions arise: Where are all the messages kept? How do they reach their destination? Where do all those commercials come from? Who cares, we are talking about the Cloud after all .
Similarly to service we can also differentiate Cloud according to who is using it as a resource:
- Cumulonimbus (Private Cloud): most common, usually a corporation creates it for internal use, and it completely controls all resources/rain drops, including the access.
- Nimbostratus (Public Cloud): complete opposite to private cloud. For certain amount of money which is affordable to everyone, user thinks that all resources he is using are his.
- Stratocumulus (Mixed Cloud): corporation has the two aforementioned clouds, but it can “shuttle” the resources between its users and buyers, in other words public users.
- Cirrus (Common Cloud): rarest of its kind, when multiple corporations get together and integrate their clouds into one single organization.
What are the benefits of using Cloud? Multiple: reduced business cost (through optimization hw/sw), a huge amount of possibilities (through various environments that are prepared well in advanced), quick transition from test to production phase (often that transition is only one mouse click away), quick and simple access with multitude of devices (laptop, desktop, tablet, cellular), and so on and so forth.
Of course there are also flaws when it comes to the cloud service, for certain usage that “flaw” is impassable: first off, security because you never know where your (sensitive) data is located. In the past there were many cases where personal data was stolen which contained pictures of nudity, even “confidential” data belonging to the CIA was leaked. Network dependence is also a key risk factor, even a small interruption of one part leads to a complete “failure” of the whole system…
I hope that I managed to tingle your mind a bit
Below you can find additional material for your reference: