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Cloud computing is quickly becoming the standard way of running software on the Internet. There are several types of cloud computing platforms available. These range from simple software products to more complex turnkey hardware and software combination stacks. Cloud computing is the a la carte method of running information technology for an organization.
Renting software products on the Internet is an example of a cloud computing platform. This is often referred to as software as a service (SAAS). Several software products are sold as services to the general public on the Internet. This is typically an affordable option because the cost of the software is divided among thousands of users. One of the best examples of this type of software is Salesforce®. This is a sales management software that is managed completely on the Internet.
Testing software is another type of cloud computing platform. This is designed specifically for software programmers. It provides developers with an area on the Internet to test newly developed programs. Using cloud testing tools allows people to rent equipment for a short duration, which saves time and money. Most industrial testing programs are now available as cloud platforms on the Internet.
Microsoft® offers many of the Office applications as a cloud computing platform. These software packages include Microsoft® Word®, Excel®, PowerPoint® and Outlook® email services. The cloud platform provides this software on the Internet instead of relying on individual computer desktops. This reduces licensing and maintenance costs for individuals and organizations.
Collaboration software is another growing area in cloud computing. This software provides people with a tool to share pictures, music, and other content across the Internet. Collaboration software is typically expensive because it requires significant hardware to store large amounts of data. The cloud platform is sold to the public as a turnkey solution, which can be more cost effective.
One of the primary benefits of using a cloud computing platform is maximizing the computing power of the Internet. Historically, companies would buy new hardware for each application used in the company. The cloud moves the hardware management to external service providers, which saves organizations money.
Software development tools are another form of cloud computing platform. This is special software designed for programmers to create new applications. Using a cloud development environment is a good option for startup companies because it reduces the initial expense for software and hardware needed to build computer applications.
@Vincenzo -- the Internet going down is still a problem, to be sure, but a lot of cloud apps re designed with that in mind. If you have a service interruption, then you can still work in a lot of apps. Cloud computing is still new and there are some problems to work out, but things have gotten a lot better.
This technology certainly has potential, but be warned -- cloud computing apps don't work if your Internet connection goes down. That seems to happen regularly and right at the time you most need to get some work done.
Until the technology improves, you are better off with a standalone program and cloud storage so you can access your files anywhere you happen to have an Internet connection. That truly is the best of both worlds -- important files are backed up and you can still get some work done if you have a standalone program and cloud storage that syncs your filed and downloads them locally to all your computers utilizing that storage.
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