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What Is The Cloud, Anyway?

Since financial services firms have a high exposure to cloud-based services and applications, it's helpful to know what the cloud is and how it operates. This infographic helps with the basics of the cloud.

As individuals, we use the cloud everyday. Gmail, iCloud and Netflix are all cloud-based services that consumers use on a regular basis.

Increasingly, the enterprise is taking advantage of cloud-based applications and services too. Most enterprise CIOs say their firm has exposure to 30-42 cloud applications. However, the number is likely much higher. The average exposure to the cloud in the enterprise averages 662.

[Moving to the cloud is not done overnight. Where is your financial firm when it comes to migrating to the cloud? Learn how one enterprise is making the shift. Attend the An Enterprise Journey to Hybrid Cloud session at Interop 2014 in Las Vegas, March 31-April 4.]

With such a high exposure to the cloud, it's helpful to know what the cloud actually is, and isn't.

Here is a great infographic primer from Telx Data Centers:

Demystifying the Data Center Cloud
Presented By Telx Data Centers Greg MacSweeney is editorial director of InformationWeek Financial Services, whose brands include Wall Street & Technology, Bank Systems & Technology, Advanced Trading, and Insurance & Technology. View Full Bio

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User Rank: Author
3/17/2014 | 2:15:22 PM
re: What Is The Cloud, Anyway?
Thanks for sharing, Greg. I took a tour of a data center a few months ago and was impressed by the great lengths they go to in order to protect the servers - and the multiple backup plans they had in case of power outage. I can hardly imagine the amount of energy it takes to power a data center the size of Microsoft's.
User Rank: Author
3/17/2014 | 2:14:31 PM
re: What Is The Cloud, Anyway?
This is an eye-opening info graphic of how pervasive the cloud is. So, basically any CIO that uses servers in data centers that are interconnected to each other is exposed to the cloud. But we often distinguish between the private vs. public cloud. Certainly fiber optic networks that connect data centers together and "that run 200,000 times faster than a typical home connection" are the private cloud.
User Rank: Author
3/16/2014 | 11:40:18 PM
re: What Is The Cloud, Anyway?
Wow, this would have come in handy 50 or so assignments ago ... the one thing I'm a bit surprised is not included here is anything about security (beyond the physical security issues outlined at the end), since security probably has been the one consistent issue holding companies back from even more aggressively embracing the cloud. Furthermore, now I'm starting to hear some people say that data may actually be more (not less) secure in the cloud -- if that is the case that could eventually drive more uptake. That said, this is a really helpful graphic.
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