October 2, 2012

The End Of "Cloud Computing?"

If you think Larry Ellison's re-definition of cloud computing was confusing, get ready for a compete replacement of the term. If some companies get their way, "cloud computing" may be dissipating rapidly.

Of course, it's not like the phrase has a close connection with the public to start with. Even prominent members of the technology community have issues with it, if Ellison's marketing-spiel is any indication. A recent national survey by Wakefield Research, commissioned by Citrix, showed that most respondents believe the cloud is related to weather, while some referred to pillows, drugs and toilet paper.

"When asked what 'the cloud' is, a majority responded it’s either an actual cloud (specifically a 'fluffy white thing'), the sky or something related to the weather (29%). Only 16% said they think of a computer network to store, access and share data from Internet-connected devices," Citrix said in a press statement.

It doesn't help that marketing departments are "cloud-washing" any remotely relevant piece of technology sold or delivered these days. The most egregious example of this was Apple's iCloud, introduced in 2011. The online storage service certainly uses cloud computing to actually hold users' data, but it is not, as a whole, what cloud computing really is.

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