Article | September 12, 2013

What Exactly Is The Cloud?

Source: MasterControl
VictorGill

By Victor Gill, MasterControl Inc., Senior Product Manager of Cloud Solutions

What exactly is Cloud? Or is it, The Cloud? Is it just me, or do no two people describe it the same way? As the product manager over the Cloud initiative at MasterControl, I hear these kinds of questions all of the time. With all of the advertising, mixed messaging, technical jargon, and promises of grandeur, it’s easy to see why so many consumers are confused. At its heart, the term Cloud has been a powerful marketing turn-of-phrase that has consolidated a large mix of technologies.

The general idea for the Cloud can be traced back to two simple business principles:

  1. Focus on your core competencies. If you’re in the business of pharmaceuticals, medical devices, or manufacturing, you probably should avoid being in the business of creating software, managing servers, and the like.
  2. Specialization improves performance and can generate economies of scale. If a company specializes in the production, maintenance, and operation of software and a sufficient number of customers chose that company’s services, the service level to the customer will be better than they could create themselves. In a nutshell the Cloud takes what software companies do best - create and maintain software - and gives access to what they have created via a wide area network, like the Internet.