After much resistance, I extended part of my life on-line.
The reality is that technology plays an important role in my life. I organize, communicate, create, distribute and entertain through computing. But even with Palm, a decent Linux workstation and the web to my disposal much of this technology and its benefits are separate. While I can connect remotely to my desktop and let my groupware, Kontact handle my e-mails, RSS feeds, etc., its not convenient.
Here is where Google enters in. They have the storage and online applications that keep me and my data connected. Its not perfect. I rather using the Internet as a conduit, and maintaining everything locally. But its not realistic for me to do so. In theory, I could produce, store and transmit electricity myself (obviously with the right equipment) too. In practise, I pay a utility company to do so.
So why not do the same with computing? Thats the promise of cloud computing. Think of it as hosted web applications on steroids. Cloud computing would change computing into a utility. Use only as much as you need. Have it accessible all the time, everywhere. Imagine your desktop, mobile device, workstations and servers all communicating seamlessly with each other.
Of course, Google is not exactly cloud computing. Its close. But Google serves you and me, so that we are a captivated audience for advertisers. But I can’t complain about Google… they do host this blog after all… and a bunch of my data. However a number of companies are moving forward with utility/cloud computing: Amazon, Salesforce.com and Sun Microsystems to name a few. Exactly in what form, how and who will create a stable platform in the Internet cloud, remains to be seen. We do live in times with interesting possibilities.