InfoWorld: Cloud computing is all the rage.. it’s the phrase du jour.

In April 2008, InfoWorld looked into this hot new topic and said it was “at an early stage, with a motley crew of providers large and small delivering a slew of cloud-based services, from full-blown applications to storage services to spam filtering.”

Cloud computing is all the rage. “It’s become the phrase du jour,” says Gartner senior analyst Ben Pring, echoing many of his peers. The problem is that (as with Web 2.0) everyone seems to have a different definition.

As a metaphor for the Internet, “the cloud” is a familiar cliché, but when combined with “computing,” the meaning gets bigger and fuzzier. Some analysts and vendors define cloud computing narrowly as an updated version of utility computing: basically virtual servers available over the Internet. Others go very broad, arguing anything you consume outside the firewall is “in the cloud,” including conventional outsourcing.

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