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Will Cloud Computing Save the Economy?

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As David Linthicum writes over at InfoWorld, "as CRN reported, '68 percent of respondents said cloud computing will help their businesses recover from the recession.'" So do you think Cloud Computing will save the economy?

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  • Sorry, but no one IT method for delivering solutions will save the economy. I have no doubt that cloud computing for some companies will help them save money, for others it will remove certain barriers of entry to particular solutions, which may intern help them run more efficiently and make a greater profit.

    However, the only thing that will help business, is good business sense, which includes looking after your customers, keeping hold of key staff members and, investing in IT wisely...

  • To say that cloud computing would save the economy would be an overstatement, but cloud computing is certainly one of the drivers of economic recovery. It is enabling companies to be more competitive and productive, and cloud computing is a thriving industry in its own right, generating lots of jobs.

    Pankaj
    http://www.hyperoffice.com

  • Following the .com implosion, the Japanese government concluded that the SME sector in Japan lagged significantly behind the developed countries in IT adoption, and therefore was losing competitiveness. Japan’s ministry of information initiated regulation and guidelines for internet based IT (at the time referred to as ASP) and invested in broadband Internet infrastructure, in order to facilitate IT adoption by SME’s. The results followed, and I estimate that Japan has presently the most extensively used Cloud based IT in the world. That did not save Japan from taking a severe economic hit with the recent financial crisis.

    My take is that Cloud Computing improves the business agility and resilience, in particular of SME’s, but I would not go beyond that.

  • Yeah, about as much as my 2 year old daughter will save the economy. They're about the same age, have great potential, and don't cost much to maintain, but they're still wobbly and have a tendency to explode in public. I love 'em, but I don't trust 'em. Not yet.

  • "Save the economy" is pretty broad, however there are numbers out there related to cost savings with cloud. For example, the Brookings Institution claims U.S. agencies generally see between 25 to 50 percent
    savings in moving towards the cloud. With $76 billion spent on federal IT, this would result in billions of savings. (Tax refund anyone?)

    http://www.brookings.edu/papers/2010/0407_cloud_computing_west.aspx

    All organizations benefit from moving any IT from CAPX to OPEX with a pay-as-you-go model. SMBs will benefit / adopt the soonest as often they don't have financial resources to own their IT the way large enterprises do.

  • No one thing can save the economy. Sure, cloud computing is a game-changer as far as the wired and connected world is concerned. It does provide a clue, though, in terms of thinking and working collectively but it will take other disruptive ideas, mostly philosophical, to take us out of this big, fragmented way of doing things.

  • A big YES. Cloud computing dramatically levels the playing field between larger established enterprises and startups. A startup now has access to large data center resources that were formerly prohibitively expensive.

    There was a time when launching a serious startup required serious capital. Seed money was required for hiring talent, marketing and promotion, office space, and for technology to make it all happen.

    The technology portion of the equation is suddenly diminishing, dramatically. Thanks to cloud computing and social networking resources, it now costs virtually pennies to secure and get the infrastructure needed up and running to get a new venture off the ground.

    A lot of laid-off or frustrated professionals now have access to computing and information resources unheard of even a few years ago. New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, for one, calls this the rise of the “Do-It-Yourself Economy,? driven by a mass diffusion of low-cost, high-powered innovation technologies — from hand-held computers to Web sites that offer any imaginable service — plus cheap connectivity. They are transforming how business is done.?

    With IT infrastructure costs low and cheap -- with other resources such as the collaborative and production sites -- prepare for an explosion in entrepreneurial activity. Unemployment is high right now, and there are many, many, many professionals who see the startup route as a more sustainable alternative to seeking full-time employment.

    With this confluence of underutilized skills and cheap resources -- the DIY economy -- we may be on the verge of an explosion in entrepreneurial activity in the decade ahead that will rival anything we've seen before.

  • Cloud computing won't remedy the economy. But, it does provide a powerful antidote for companies trying to overcome the challenges posed by today's economy.

  • As I understand it the primary reasons behind our current economic conditions are:

    1. The burst of the housing bubble.
    2. Questionable ethical practices of lenders with rampant subprime loans coupled with Mortgage Backed Securities and Collateralized debt objects of such loans.
    3. Fiscal irresponsibility of borrowers.

    Can anyone say "Cloud Computing" to the above?

    I certainly CAN NOT :)

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    The cloud is definitely a game changer...it can reach thousands of organizations (small, medium and large) to help them run their businesses with added flexibility, improved effeciences and reduced costs through technology that was previously unavailable to them or was difficult to obtain due to infrasturecture needs and assocaited costs. This will impact the economy positively.

  • Fiscal discipline and a return to business fundamentals will save the economy. As an Enterprise Architect, that means looking for (and perhaps advocating for) business objectives that are simple. For example, more revenue and less expense means a healthier business. Kids running lemonade stands can understand that.

    I think cloud computing (an extension of virtualization, IMHO) is certainly one tactic that can aid in reducing an IT shop's OpEx. I recall days when we advocated for huge testing environment to simulate production in order to drive up software quality. It was a noble request but it involved fork-lifting way too many machines and really put a burden on CapEx. Cloud allows IT shops to dynamically consume resources without the forklift and only what they need. Like a cell phone, if you need more, just use it! Of course, extensive monitoring and controls will be necessary.

    Cloud seems to hold promise for driving down costs and contributing to operational agility. But its not a panacea.

  • Can Cloud Computing Save the Economy?

    Absolutely - right after it brings peace to the Middle East & fix the environmental disaster in the Gulf.

  • Agree, cloud can not save the economy, but it can accelerate a company's growth and competitiveness in the recovery.

  • Marc Rix,

    First of all if you are under the impression that the Cloud has only been available for 2 years then please do a little research before you comment. Just because you only acknowledged it 2 years ago like your daughterś birthday, and marketing professional branded to have it called the Cloud, I have new for you: it has been around for the last 40 years.If you don´t trust the cloud please refer from the following: stop e-banking, stop shopping online, stop booking flights and holidays online, stop using facebook, Twitter, even stop commenting on this BLOG.

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