Main Components of Cloud Computing

Main Components of Cloud Computing

Yushi Shen, Yale Li, Ling Wu, Shaofeng Liu, Qian Wen
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4801-2.ch002
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Cloud-era Information Technology (IT) contains three main themes: The information hub (cloud), network communications (pipes), and intelligent terminals. In this chapter, the developmental stages of these three main components of cloud computing are discussed, with emphasis on future development. The Internet of things is also examined, which is expected to thrive as a direct result of the development of cloud computing.
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Cloud Era Information Hub

The information hub occupies the center position. Its fundamental tasks are to construct the cloud storage and computing systems, and complete the cloud era tasks of ultra-large scale and ultra-high complexity.

Originally referring to the main part of the human nervous system, the so-called hub or nerve center has the following major functions: stores and processes information, produces a variety of mental activities, and controls all aspects of the human behavior. In the personal computer (PC) and the internet age, a computer can be the information hub of a person or an enterprise that realizes information storage and computing functions. In the cloud computing era, cloud computing data centers are to replace personal computers, and become the new information hub that lowers costs and improves on the efficiency, in satisfying the human demands for massive information storage, computing and security.

Microsoft's Senior Vice President Yaqin Zhang has pointed out: “Cloud computing is the engine and the nervous center for the next generation of the Internet, Internet of Things and mobile Internet.” It is very true, that cloud computing is, in essence, the central nervous system of the cloud era. Presently, this fact has been mainly reflected in the cloud data centers. Various kinds of cloud terminals are connected through the various communication networks, to interact with the end users as well as the physical world. In this sense, the relationship between the “cloud” and the “terminals” may be compared with that of the spirit and matters, or the soul and bodies.

In the coming years, the world is to be populated with tens of billions of network-enabled devices, billions of network users, and countless cloud applications and services. It is not difficult to foresee that in this cloud era, there is not going to be a lack of devices and end users, nor applications and services. However, a smart “nerve center” that can resolve highly complex tasks is going to be in high demand. The development of cloud computing is not to be limited to commercial activities, nor is it going to be a simple update of the IT application model. Instead, the cloud computing development is likely to be a contest and competition, between the various cloud era nerve centers.

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