You might be surprised to learn that cloud computing is not a 21st Century phenomenon. In 1969, ARPANET was launched. This network allowed for the connection of four different computers that could all share data. The system was inspired by a memo put out by the Information Processing Techniques Office, which was part of the Pentagon. ARPANET was very limited, but it proved a point: data sharing and remote computing were very real possibilities. The term ‘cloud computing’ was coined in the 1990s during the birth of the internet age. The advent of broadband internet and advanced end-to-end encryption provoked a huge increase in cloud computing adoption during the 21st Century. Today, cloud computing is a fundamental part of many businesses’ future plans. Here are some of the more significant benefits of cloud computing in business.
Cloud computing and storage work by centralizing servers in a remote location. The computing and storage power of these remote servers is then accessed by users over the internet. This centralization has opened up new opportunities for automation. Automation is a bit of a buzzword in the world of business, with business leaders constantly buying into new ways of reducing human workload and increasing efficiency. Infrastructure as Code – often shortened to IaC – is one of the key automation processes that makes cloud computing efficient. IaC automates the upscaling of computer networks. It increases cost efficiency when making changes to a network.
We live in the age of the data deluge. The term ‘data deluge’ refers to the inability of traditional institutional computing systems to handle the vast quantities of data being created in our ever more networked world. Businesses looking to utilize increasing quantities of data have traditionally had to invest in physical hardware that costs a great deal of money to install and maintain. On-site data centers are immensely complex and pricey and need to be completely overhauled when they run out of space. Cloud computing is inherently scalable and, therefore, this makes it easier for businesses to store huge and ever-increasing quantities of data.
Why are companies so interested in this data in the first place? Why not simply downscale the amount of data that they use? The answer is simple: data is immensely powerful. The use of big data has enabled business leaders to formulate strategic aims with more information at their fingertips than ever before. Big data can be defined as any dataset that is so large and diverse that it can only be coded and analyzed by algorithms. Big datasets can be used to generate trend forecasts many times more accurately than was previously thought possible. Cloud computing is essential to the efficient use of big data. On-site storage and computing hardware would simply not be able to cope with the exponentially growing nature of big datasets. Although some pundits have questioned the modern fervor for big data, it is likely to play a huge part in business strategy well into the future.