Cloud Computing Overview

Cloud computing is defined by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)2 as “a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.”

Five essential characteristics of cloud computing: 

  • on-demand service,
  • broad network access, 
  • resource pooling, 
  • rapid elasticity, and
  • measured service.

The different cloud deployment and service models are:

The enterprise has been quick to adopt service models such as SAAS & BPAS as they provide the much needed flexibility from payment to capability realization. This does not mean that the challenges associated with these service models have been all resolved just that there is a higher degree of willingness to adapt.

IAAS & PAAS while achieving rapid adoption, pose different challenges for the enterprise. These range fundamentally from how enterprise IT functions to how business scales. These are more deep rooted changes and go beyond acquiring a service or implementing a technology.

Eventually both the paths are “transformational” in nature and  forward looking organizations are in best place to realize this change.


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