Talk:Cloud computing/Archive 2

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Archive 1 Archive 2 Archive 3


Cloud-computing isn't just the Internet

The first sentence should be modified. There is an entire industry around private cloud computing that is not delivered over the internet, but over private lines. Fonesurj (talk) 19:56, 7 January 2010 (UTC)

Yes, I totally agree!
Within the Computer Science community, Cloud is used as a general term to describe a set of distributed services possibly running on different computers, networks and sites; that end users sees as a whole system. The term cloud has been used (before the term was picked up by the internet community) by Talarian and later by TIBCO to describe a set of PUB/SUB servers that clients regard as one. Ref: SmartSockets. Having one single entry point (endpoint), an uniform interface and login procedure to a set of distributed services may qualify that domain as a cloud.
Please modify as suggested.
--Malin Lindquist (talk) 07:36, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

Illustration: "Cloud computing logical diagram" is missleading

The illustration gives the impression that there is only one cloud, which consists of all known internet service provicders such as Yahoo, Microsoft and Google. Instead, I would suggest something more general like this: CLOUD

--Malin Lindquist (talk) 08:25, 12 January 2010 (UTC)


Sounds like an emerging buzzword. Should then have Category:Buzzwords. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 21:50, 21 January 2010 (UTC)

I agree! Now, we're one against the universe! Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 14:15, 22 January 2010 (UTC)

Article is for Technical Users

I believe that Wiki articles are needed to address on general users instead of specialists. This article is not very easy to understand and needs some more work in order to be understandable for all users. Beside of this, Introduction may need to be changed or modified to give first time users better impression and understanding. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Simonare (talkcontribs) 16:49, 23 January 2010 (UTC)


Google the term "wikiality", and "cabal". This will likely help you understand why your section on criticism was removed. -sine ur posts- —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:34, 29 January 2010 (UTC)

Unreliable or misleading intro

I simply don't believe the intro. I get the impression that it claims that "cloud computing" is Internet. I believe it reflects a wish to equate "cloud computing" with Internet, which is factually wrong. I believe cloud computing is an amoebic resource allocation for program execution and memory resources, and also a resource allocation that is dependent on temporary need, much more than any predetermined resource allocation. Bussinessally this implies buying resources for the temporary needs, and no more. I believe that this would seem attractive to economists that don't want to see items of operational costs. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 11:29, 23 January 2010 (UTC)

The following statement seems to me like gargish:
In concept, it is a paradigm shift whereby
IMHO, "In concept," is an intro to a definition or to an elaborate technical description, and whatever cloud computing is, it is not a paradigm shift. Possibly it emerged as a result of a paradigm shift, but the sentence confuses description and process of emergence, which seems like drunk-talk to me. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 11:40, 23 January 2010 (UTC)
I agree that the lead needs to differentiate cloud computing from general use of the Internet better than it does at the moment. Some time ago I attempted to rewrite the start of the lead to be more meaningful, but I encountered resistance from User:SamJohnston - see discussion here. Letdorf (talk) 12:47, 26 January 2010 (UTC).

Confusing lead

I find the lead to be baffling. And please, no wisecracks about about using Two others here read it and were perplexed too. Cheers. :) Anna Frodesiak (talk) 09:52, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

I agree with you, and yes, you are not alone. The introduction "clarity" issue will come up, get discussed, and other editors who disagree typically prevail — and remove the discussion from this page, as if the matter is settled. I find the introduction to be a poor reflection of the spirit of Wikipedia, and a poor reflection of the concept of an introduction. You can see an instance of the older discussion, which was removed from this page, HERE. 842U (talk) 15:09, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
I disagree: I think the lead is just plainly illogical. F.ex.:
The term cloud is used as a metaphor for the Internet
As far as I can imagine there are no terms that are metaphors. Terms are defined concepts precisely used in a certain technological or scientific contexts. Metaphors are just similes, almost the perfect opposition of a term. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 21:53, 21 January 2010 (UTC)
And the first paragraph of the lead is just an elaborate circular definition, defining the cloud by referring to the cloud. The entire intro needs a total rewrite. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 21:58, 21 January 2010 (UTC)

what about new cloud computing —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:47, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

Every once in a while this comes up, someone tries something new, there's a bunch of refinements and we end up with something pleasing to the masses that's just plain wrong. Like we have now. Remember, we don't have to be precise, just accurate - if cloud ~= Internet then so be it. -- samj inout 00:34, 8 March 2010 (UTC)

Why was Software as a Service redirected here?

Hello, Software as a Service and Cloud computing are both highly viewed pages on Wikipedia. They are not necessarily the same thing--and ti s a disservice to Wikipedia readers to eliminate the Saas page. I do not agree that the SaaS page should have been redirected to this article and the SaaS page effectively removed in this way without discussion. What do others think? JLRedperson (talk) 17:54, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

I agree with your objection. SaaS applies even if there is no "cloud", not to mention the point that "cloud computing" is much more of a buzzword. - JCLately
As you'll see from the edit logs I worked my way through uncited, biased, irrelevant and at times blatantly wrong content until basically all that was left was what you see here. All three articles (SaaS, PaaS, IaaS) were in an embarrassing state, to the point where the only sensible option was to stub them. The cloud computing article meanwhile had spamtraps for each of these sections and it made sense [to me at least] to house them here until such time as they develop sufficiently to warrant their own articles. Bear in mind also that all three have been fairly stagnant since I last looked at them (~a year ago or more). Now, if you're saying you're going to write a neutral, verifiable article then be my guest but I'm well sick of making excuses for Wikipedia's inaccuracies in the cloud/SaaS community. -- samj inout 19:34, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

Software freedom vs. Open Source

I replaced "Open source" with "Software freedom", but Jeh restored my change saying it was very disruptive to Wikipedia. I made this change based on an article I read a while back on Open Source Initiative official website, which is considered the official definer and maintainer of what is "Open Source". There is a difference between "free software" and "open source", they both reflect different views. FSF represents 'free software' and OSI represents 'open source'. OSI, as I just mentioned, says web 2.0 application has nothing to do with 'open source' because the software isn't distributed; but FSF insist on the fact that software freedom is what matters, and that web 2.0 applications are either free or non-free software. Choosing the correct set of words is important. We cannot say OSI takes a position that they didn't take. Any objections to the re-change?--OsamaK 15:01, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

Any objections? Yes. While I understand the issue of free vs open source software well, this is not the forum for that discussion. "Free" software is a subset of open source (which is a compromise on the "free" side of the free<->proprietary continuum), and it is certainly the latter that we are referring to here. It seems your original edit was made in good faith though, and thankyou for bringing it up on the talk page rather than reverting. -- samj inout 10:42, 1 March 2010 (UTC)
The point of vieew that we mean here is the philosophy that concerns about freedom to study, modify and redistribute the software. Open Source, again, has no effect when it comes to undistributed software (that's a fact). By contrast, free software philosophy is matter of freedom, and that's what we want to refer to here. I agree with your point in other contexts and I do support using FLOSS as a neutral term to refer to the same set of software when the philosophical/political point of view doesn't differentiate in the result, but that's a different case.--OsamaK 18:32, 2 March 2010 (UTC)
The "issue" with "open source" is specifically the ASP loophole not triggering the license, which is why it's "open source" that's the issue and not FLOSS. Perhaps we should also s/Linux/GNU Linux/g? :P -- samj inout 00:28, 8 March 2010 (UTC)

Added section on major research initiatives

Because this is a huge topic, I added a section on some of the major research initiatives. JLRedperson (talk) 02:58, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

I have to avoid CoI issues so won't edit that area directly, just discuss it here
* not sure that linking to EGEE is consistent with the "Cloud computing is not grid computing theme
* I'd mention PlanetLab
-steve. SteveLoughran (talk) 20:18, 3 March 2010 (UTC)
Certainly seems sensible to have such a section - thanks for taking the time to collate this info. Let's keep it cloud specific though or it'll be a massive coatrack. -- samj inout 00:24, 8 March 2010 (UTC)

Error in paragraph 4

The documents refers to a 'technical definition' of cloud computing that references a document at [1]. The quoted definition doesn't appear in the document at all, even though it refers to version 15 in the footnote. Don't know enough about the history of the definition to change it myself -- perhaps it refers to an earlier definition? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:09, 12 March 2010 (UTC)

Removal of passage

The following passage is strange: "The cloud therefore, can refer to a lack of wires or hardware ownership as well as to a lack of software ownership." How can “the cloud” exists without wires and hardware? And as far as I know all hardware and software that clouds run on have owners. The difference is that cloud providers usually charge for using someone else s' hardware and software resources during (a) fixed period(s) as opposed of paying an upfront fee for purchasing h/w and s/w. --Malin Lindquist (talk) 06:34, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Actually I agree with you; it is totally strange. It is in fact very strange that people seem to feel that Google Maps is a completely free service. Somewhere, someone is paying for that service, just not the company that instructed its employees to use the service. Perhaps the sentence should be "The cloud therefore, can refer to the lack of wires and dedicated purpose at the client side, or ambiguous hardware and/or software ownership." The main problem with defining the cloud, is looking at it from the client side because there it's "Cloudy" (points vaguely up in the sky); and then looking at it from the server side (mega data centres with mobile server units and complex pricing structures). DSP-user (talk) 07:05, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Someone beat me to fixing this. -- samj inout 02:48, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

To better understand how Google maps is being paid for somewhere, look into this business model: Freemium. It's free for 99% and 1% pays for the use of what is free. Those who go "Pro" pay for those who use "Beta". This is only possible because of the incredible amount of traffic generated on the internet. A shoe store could never do something like this, but the internet with multiple millions of people logging on and using services, it can only take 1% to fund something of such magnitude.

-J.W. Watson —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:51, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

Criticism (light) on Cloud Computing

Trying not to be harsh, but... OK, check this: in cloud computing, if you mainly store your data online, even if you lock it and whatnot, it can still be hacked into and... well, then where's your file? someone took it, important or not, especially if it contains personal info. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:13, 28 January 2010 (UTC)

and this is somehow different if you have your data on your own PC (and your PC is turned on regularly with your network cable plugged in). How? Do you think you are better equipped to safeguard your data than the online storage people? Mahjongg (talk) 23:13, 19 February 2010 (UTC)
This is actually a really good question. There is no way of knowing how data can be recovered without testing the recovery process. This is why I've been harsh on some people like Reliacloud who make indefensible claims about how their storage provides geographic dispersion when all their web site talks about is a SAN, which only spans a single site. For good data redundancy you need to store more than one copy of the data, on different sites. You also need to keep checksums of the data, and regularly verify that the copies of the data you have checksum to the same value as the checksum. If there is a mismatch you have a problem. Apache Hadoop, for example, has every data storage node, the datanodes, set up to continually read and checksum the blocks in their spare time, so that problems get found and corrected early. Even then though, go through their bug database and search for "Hadoop DFS data loss" and you find out the harsh truth: data can get lost in interesting ways. See [| HDFS Issues] for details.
Amazon S3 is replicated onto multiple sites, I have heard claims that they are on different fault lines, so it would take more than one earthquake to lose the data. However there is still the risk of data corruption, which is often the most insidious. The single documented event [|| 2008-07-20 outage] tells us much about its implementation.
A conclusion has to be: you can't trust any single site, local or remote. You need to keep a copy somewhere else, possibly offline. If you want it to be secure "in the cloud" or locally, encrypt it, don't forget the pass phrase. But also bear in mind the lifespan of DVDs and tapes, the long term availability of DVD and tape readers, and other potential problems. SteveLoughran (talk) 17:35, 21 February 2010 (UTC)
The conclusion is, storing data on your own computer may be just as unsafe as storing it in the cloud. Mahjongg (talk) 08:45, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Guys, this is not the right forum for general cloud discussions. Unfortunately I don't have any suggestions for a better one, but this isn't it. -- samj inout 20:58, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Agreed. Mahjongg (talk) 23:44, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

I disagree, this is the perfect forum to discuss cloud computing, exactly for the reason that you don't have any suggestions for a better location. Of course, location is used loosely because it can only be defined by an IP address and a position on the very "cloud" we are discussing. Lately I've been noticing in management system magazines the advertising lining the pages with companies offering their abundant data collection to everyone, for a pay as you go business model. The company I want to focus on from the magazine is AT&T, they not only offered space available to businesses, they also offered security. The only item that remains in question is, how do you govern promised security on a world wide market? Are there any laws supporting AT&T's claim of security? The truth is, if they actually devote the energy and time in securing and storing your information, it is less the expense for your busines or yourself. Think about the costs associated with retaining and developing encryption for your information. When I think about it I'm certainly not above cloud computing and outsourcing my storage space, as Nicholas G. Carr discusses, many businesses have already put the energy into making the decision to use these outsourced data centers.

-J.W. Watson —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:42, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

I think it might be worth pointing out the WP:NOTFORUM policy here: bear in mind that talk pages exist for the purpose of discussing how to improve articles; they are not mere general discussion pages about the subject of the article, nor are they a helpdesk for obtaining instructions or technical assistance. Letdorf (talk) 13:52, 18 March 2010 (UTC).

The lead, one sentence. That's all I ask.

Well, months later, the lede is still baffling. I just don't have the head to fix it. I hate computers, but would personally love to know what the heck cloud computing is. Here are three sources with definitions. All I am suggesting is a simple, one-sentence addition to the beginning of the lede to help people understand. Then, sure, the mumbo jumbo and talk of paradigm shifts can follow. [2] [3] [4] I've contributed to this problem as far as I can. Please help. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 04:35, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

The simple problem is that every party involved has some reason why "The Cloud" needs to mean what is (Commercially or Technically) "best for them", so an agreement on what "the cloud" means is almost impossible to enforce. This situation will sort itself out once people start to use one incarnation of "The Cloud" above all the others. Meantime this article talks about the principles involved, and that makes it so convoluted, also because everybody tries to give the meaning its own twist. Mahjongg (talk) 08:52, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Okay. That's sounds reasonable. I would still like to add some sort of broadly agreeable definition and see what happens. I don't want to start an edit war though. Thanks for your input. I will replace the unintelligible first sentence with this, which is a composite of many broad definitions that I have come across:
Cloud computing is a way of computing, via the Internet, that broadly shares computer resources instead of having local servers handle specific applications.

Anna Frodesiak (talk) 09:31, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

Fine, I have just one practical comment, and that is that most users wont recognize that "local servers" in this instance means their own PC. So I would make it Cloud computing is a way of computing, via the Internet, that broadly shares computer resources instead of having your local PC handle specific applications.

Mahjongg (talk) 13:43, 22 February 2010 (UTC)

That's what local servers mean? I thought it meant computers in the vicinity. I know nothing of computers. Ask me about pies. I know how to make pies. Can you make the edit? Be bold. Thanks. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 13:53, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Well, thats part of the problem, there may be people who argue that the cloud is an alternative to serving applications from a local server (intranet). But I that is really not what most people will think of when they think about running "cloud applications". I will be bold, and make the edit, But I fully expect I will attract "flak". We will see what happens. Mahjongg (talk) 18:55, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Ok so you've picked up the "Internet" and "multi-tenancy" themes but missed "utility", "device and location independence", "scalability", etc. Sure what was there isn't perfect, but this isn't much better. -- samj inout 19:09, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Ah, there we go! Duck and cover! :-) . Where does it say "multi-Tenancy " in the first sentence (and what does it mean)? "utility", "device and location independence", "scalability" All these terms will mean nothing to the average potential user of a cloud service who wants to know what the heck it is. That these terms do not clutter up this first sentence in the lede means there is a fighting chance they will read on, and not be discouraged from the start. Its a very complex issue, lets start it simple. Mahjongg (talk) 23:52, 22 February 2010 (UTC)
Mahjongg: Well put! Let's not squabble. We're here to serve (ultimately) the visitors to the page. Let's keep the lead sentence as broad as possible, and then go into details later. And SamJohnston: At least the lead sentence approaches a definition. The previous lead sentence made no sense at all. Please tweak the lead, keeping in mind that visitors may be coming to the page for a definition, as well as further information. Happy editing. Peace. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 01:32, 23 February 2010 (UTC)
Look I agree the article needs to be fixed and have spent the intervening 8 hours working on it... the WP:LEDE should be an introduction and "summary of the important aspects of the subject" which means it should be fairly specific while also being readable. For some background I wrote the article & created the diagrams a few years ago (after spending countless hours poring over literally dozens of definitions) and have spent the last 3-4 years helping large enterprises understand what it's all about. Most of my (limited) Wikipedia time recently has been spent on pointless bikeshed painting here on the talk page and cleaning the article's various spamtraps. As you can see today I've been working from the bottom up, leaving the hardest stuff until last. If you're happy to help get the article in shape (ideally GA or possibly even FA status) then you're most welcome, but let's try to be efficient about it. -- samj inout 01:52, 23 February 2010 (UTC)

I agree. And, your substantial improvements to the article are well appreciated. My only involvement or concern was with the first sentence of the lead. As long as it's not what it was before, I'm happy. As for helping making it GA or FA, I'm unqualified to help. My meddling work is done here. I'm off to Pie to see if I can get my fingers into that. Thanks for your patience and understanding. Keep up the good work. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 02:40, 23 February 2010 (UTC)

Yes, if you look at how readable its now compared to say a week ago, its a huge improvement. The lede should be readable by the average Wikipedia visitor, technical details can be explained later, and non mainstream interpretations of the term should too. best regards. Mahjongg (talk) 22:59, 23 February 2010 (UTC)

And once again, already, the intro is not only meaningless (eg vague) but flat out wrong. "Cloud refers to the fact that exact pathways and exact servers need not be addressed by the user."? WTF? -- samj inout 15:29, 25 February 2010 (UTC)
Tweak it. Change it. As long as the lead sentence doesn't get into paradigm shifts, I'll be thrilled. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 15:41, 25 February 2010 (UTC)
Agreed that sentence does nothing to clarify what cloud means to an average users, it rather "clouds" the issue (no pun intended). It should go. Mahjongg (talk) 17:32, 25 February 2010 (UTC)
  • The problem is every time we touch this (trust me it's happened like 1/2 a dozen times now) it goes into a state of fast flux and ends up completely ridiculous (as above) before I reset it to something sensible derived from the words themselves (cloud as in internet-based and computing as in, well, computing). Imagine the Internet is like the electricity grid with no power stations - you can connect on one side and consume power from a solar panel I've got connected on mine, but there's nothing else to it really. Enter cloud and you're adding the power stations. -- samj inout 00:01, 26 February 2010 (UTC)
Yes there seem to be forces at work that deliberately want to disorient people about what cloud computing could mean for them, (and what the potential pitfalls are) or they want to give it one proprietary meaning. We should not let this happen, and revert with malice and tenacity! Mahjongg (talk) 20:46, 26 February 2010 (UTC)
Ok so once again we have a WP:LEDE which is more precise but less accurate. Who ever said cloud doesn't need/use software & storage on the local PC? What's a browser? Gears? You see the problem now - it's not so easy to accurately describe in plain english. And you know what, it doesn't need to be precise, so long as it's accurate. -- samj inout 00:30, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
You seem to use very peculiar definitions of "precise" and "accurate", which I do not care much for. My only wish is that the lede is readable, and is not manipulated to tender for just one special interest group which wants do define "cloud computing" for their own limited purpose. As it is now, its much better understandable than it was before, and I think it would suffer greatly if we want to make it "less precise", and "more accurate". And no, I don't see any merit in your "objections". The lede isn't claiming that not any software or storage is used on the PC, it would be absurd to read that into it, and who doesn't know what a "browser" is, and why is that even relevant? The word "gears" (for "google gears", I think that is what you mean) doesn't even appear in the article (let alone in the lede), so what is your point? So no, i do not "see the problem". Mahjongg (talk) 02:29, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
Precision and accuracy are best explained using the target analogy. You want something specific, to go into some amount of detail for readability/understandability, and yet cloud is, by definition, nebulous and thus far evades a precise definition. Furthermore, it means different things for different people (and there are conflicting reliable sources to this effect) so we really need a definition that satisfies most/all rather than one that matches with your personal view of what cloud is (with or without an opinion piece as a source). This attempt is not bad - and certainly a lot better than many before it - but I think we can still do better. Skype, for example, uses local software almost exclusively to deliver a service that is, for all intents and purposes, cloud (the key thing is that you don't [need to] care how it is delivered). -- samj inout 21:14, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for clearing up what you mean by "Precision" and "accuracy". Its precisely because the definition of cloud is still foggy at the moment that it would be unwise to be too "precise" in the definition, and it may well be that trying to be "accurate" is at this point unwise as well, as in fact the "target" (what the primary meaning of "cloud" will become) may move in the future. So IMHO we need to paint as global a picture as possible. The lede also should try to use language that the average reader who has a slight interest in the subject can understand, so do not try to be "accurate" by using "computers, phones and other devices", but use something they understand as "that what you are using now". A "Personal Computer" (I try to avoid the term PC, as many people think it exclude Mac's) seems to be a good enough description. Even better (more generic) would be to use the term "desktop", but its difficult to use that without causing confusion. This is why I am also against using specifics in the lede, such as mentioning Skype. I am not trying to write the lede to reflect "my personal view of what cloud is", but rather to what I feel is the current average idea that people have about the future/current meaning of "cloud". By "people" I mean people that have made an educated guess about what meaning "cloud" will get the future. But the picture is as you said still fuzzy. I think that therefore the lede should reflect that. It should not try to be "precise" and "accurate", simply because its still unsure which definition of "cloud" will prevail in the coming years. Especially I don't want to bury the lede under confusing highly technical specifics, as has been the case in the past. For that you can read the rest of the article, that mentions all the warring specifics. Mahjongg (talk) 01:22, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
When you ask "people" they say "Internet": it's like computing on the internet innit[5] -- samj inout 02:46, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
LOL, a "taxi-driver definition" I like that! As I said I don't mean those people, I mean people who have taken the time and trouble to get a little bit informed about the subject, enough to generate their own (well educated) idea of what they -hope- "cloud computing" can offer them in the future. I think that this "hope" is ubiquitous, stress-less, effort-less and non frustrating use of a computer like device and its applications and services, anywhere and anytime, for less money than they pay now for their current computer and software. Mahjongg (talk) 23:31, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Watch this video (and part 2) of Canonical's Simon Wardley explaining cloud definitions, utility computing, commoditisation, etc. - it's not too long and it's fairly entertaining (not to mention insightful). -- samj inout 11:33, 12 March 2010 (UTC)


I think the reference is destabilizing the lead sentence. It has already been tagged as an unreliable source. I suggest that both the ref and the tag be removed. Also, it seems that some are unhappy with the first sentence, but most agree that it is better than before. So, I suggest that those who feel they have something better, why not present it here so that we can see what an alternative definition might look like. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 21:39, 9 March 2010 (UTC)

Cloud computing is a way of computing, via the Internet, that broadly shares computer resources instead of using software or storage on a local PC.
slight modification
Cloud computing is a way of computing, via the Internet, that broadly shares computer resources located across the internet rather than using software or storage on a local PC.
make it clearer where the resources may be. --Salix (talk): 21:54, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
The main issues are that a> software is required on the PC (usually a browser but often enough a dedicated application) and that b> it doesn't matter where the storage is... nearly all cloud systems use local storage either implicitly (browser cache) or explicitly (offline access via HTML5/gears, dedicated clients, etc.), not to mention compute & network resources (esp where a local client is involved, and volunteer computing like Skype). -- samj inout 23:51, 9 March 2010 (UTC)

I think something like this would be more explanatory but still not too specific:

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby software and information is consumed by computers, phones and other devices on-demand, like a traditional utility.

Perhaps we don't need all the links, but they do provide a good explanation of the concepts for a beginner. Is that more like what you had in mind Anna? -- samj inout 00:23, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Keep it simple please, do not obfuscate the lede! Don't be obtuse for the sake of "precision", the term "cloud" is err... too clouded still to do that, its not helpful to the average reader. Remember this is only the lede, for all the warring details and definitions of "cloud" you can read the rest of the article. I only added this reference because it was the first relevant entry I found when literally entering the lede into google. If its is destabilizing the lede (whatever that means), please remove it, or add a better one, the net is humming with similar "definitions". Mahjongg (talk) 01:36, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
Simple, sure, but it also has to be right. -- samj inout 02:42, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
Yes, but what is "right" in this context when the definition of "cloud computing" is still a moving target.Mahjongg (talk) 03:03, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
The phrase "...whereby software and information is consumed..." doesn't quite make sense to me. From what I understand, resources such as processing and storage are shared. Further down in the lead, I see the phrase "...shared pool...". That phrase seems to hit the mark for me. Correct me if I'm wrong, but in laypersons' terms, this whole thing is about using a smidgen of storage and processing power on one's own PC, (basically a bit of software to interface with the cloud), to access and share raw computing power and tons of storage that exists out there in the cloud. Am I way off? Anna Frodesiak (talk) 01:24, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
No, that isn't way off, obviously you need some elementary computing power to get on the net and make use of cloud services. Still "shared pool" does nothing for me other than conjuring up an image of people sharing a jacuzzi Keep the language simple please. Mahjongg (talk) 01:39, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Ok so how about this then:

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are used by computers, phones and other devices on-demand, like a traditional utility.

It is also a good deal more explanatory, and largely technically correct. -- samj inout 02:42, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Okay, what about this: Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, (like software and information) are used by computers, and other computing devices, in an on-demand fashion, like traditional utilities such as water and electricity.

Mahjongg (talk) 02:53, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

In fact I meant "shared resources" (compute, network, storage) in addition to software (code) and information (data) - you need those three things for computation, which is why those three things are listed (albeit in human-friendly forms). I'd also steer clear of giving examples of utilities... they are listed in the LEDE of the linked article anyway and some people have an aversion to the electricity analogy specifically. I honestly don't think it needs to be much longer than what I've suggested anyway - as you say, we've got the whole article to go into detail. -- samj inout 03:19, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Could probably drop "phones" in retrospect:
Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are used by computers and other devices on-demand, like a traditional utility.
Better? -- samj inout 03:20, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Now I think it is taking a nice shape. How about this tweak to the last bit to openly disambiguate, else people (like me) will probably think of gas and electric:

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are used by computers and other devices on-demand, like traditional utility computing.

(It's strange seeing the words "traditional" and "computers" in the same sentence. I am getting OLD!!!!)

Anna Frodesiak (talk) 04:47, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Actually gas and electricity is the comparison we want people to draw, we just don't need to be so explicit. One could argue that cloud is "traditional utility computing", because we never really got it right before. -- samj inout 11:21, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
Well, indeed its progressing, but I still have a few doubts, I don't much care for "computers and other devices", it reads as if washing machines and such will use cloud, which may well start to be true, but it isn't what is intended here. I objected against "phones", because it was too specific, and at the same time not all phones (will) have internet connectivity. So I still think that "other computing-devices" is better. I don't like the term "utility computing", in the lede, it is another highly specialized term, so at one end you are explaining the user what the concept of "cloud computing" is, while at the same time introducing a just as nebulous (no pun intended) new term. I didn't even like the fact that "utility" in fact linked to "utility computing". What is wrong with mentioning the fact that computer power will become as easy and accessible as drinking water, I think that for many people that is exactly the main promise of "cloud computing".

So my preferred sentence would become:

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, plus software and information are used by desktop computers and other computing-devices, on-demand, just like traditional public utilities. Mahjongg (talk) 11:38, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Ok so I think you're over-thinking it. For a start, there is no need to call out resources specifically when they are useless without software and information. There is also no need to be more specific than "computers" and in any case desktops are less and less relevant these days as people move to mobile devices ranging from laptops through phones - notebooks have been outselling desktops since 2005. My choice of the word "devices" was deliberate - smart grid meters are one example but ubiquitous computing in general relies heavily on cloud. Finally, when we have a perfectly good article bridging the gap between computing and utilities, why would we want to throw our readers in the deep end? In any case, if we start talking about "public" utilities we're sure to have the private cloud brigade on our case in a heartbeat. Perhaps the linking could be extended but I really don't think we're going to get much better than this:
Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are used by computers and other devices on-demand, like a traditional utility.
I think you are trying to find extra precision when there is none to be had - specifying 'desktops' for example, and 'public' utilities. I honestly believe this is as precise as we're going to get while maintaining accuracy. -- samj inout 13:57, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
Well the boldening of "shared resources" and "are used" wasn't my input, and I have no problem with removing it. I can live with the other changes too, because of the "less is more" principle. My one remaining reservation is why do you insist in linking to utility computing, its not helpful here to link to this defunct and specific (in the wrong way) subject, while we are trying to purify this first sentence from any non generic definitions of what cloud is, It smells like an attempt to sneak in a non generic definition again. I would remove the link, or link to the neutral public utility instead. I'm sure we could tweak the sentence indefinitely, (for example the end "like a traditional utility" is a bit ambiguous), but its not too bad, most people will understand what is meant. After removing two other somewhat distracting links, leaving only the two which may clarify non obvious terms we end up with this (which is very close to what you started with):

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are used by computers and other devices on-demand, like a traditional utility.

Mahjongg (talk) 23:15, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Ok by me - I did feel there were a few too many links. -- samj inout 23:35, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
Ok by me too. Clear and concise. A cirrus improvement. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 00:10, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

Great, if nobody is objecting I think this will be a good first sentence, just one point, Traditionally the recurrence of the title in the fist sentence should be bolded. Ill add that to the edit now. Mahjongg (talk) 00:13, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

Sure, if we're down to that level of detail we're doing well... -- samj inout 08:47, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
"Utility" is a bit of an ambiguous word. What is meant by a "traditional utility"? If we're comparing cloud computing to a public utility, then why not say that? If we're not, exactly what kind of "utility" are we comparing it to? Letdorf (talk) 13:17, 11 March 2010 (UTC).
Yes, we mean public utility, but you can be sure that if we use the term "public" we'll have the private cloud parade on our case ("electricity" is another one guaranteed to upset people who still want to sell kit). I don't see a problem with linking to the utility computing article here as it provides a good bridge between the two concepts (and some have argued that cloud computing is just utility computing with a new name - something I don't fully agree with but a sentiment I can nonetheless understand). I think using the term "utility" and linking off to the utility computing article would do nicely, rather than dropping people in the deep end by linking to public utility. -- samj inout 13:41, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
How about this? I think utility is a bit ambiguous so "traditional" was serving a purpose. If we don't like "traditional" then we may have to say "public utility" or give the "electricity" example - both of which I think will cause unnecessary contention. In any case I think the utility computing article is vastly better than the (very poor) public utility article for getting across our message. -- samj inout 13:48, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Why not just drop the utility bit, it seems to confuse more than elighten, comparison with utility computing can go lower down. Hence:
''Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are used by computers and other devices on-demand.
--Salix (talk): 15:22, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

If "utility" is a problematic word, maybe services will (err...) serve us better. What about this variation.

''Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are served to computers and other devices on-demand.

As I said, I object against using "utility computing" for the reasons stated above, and don't understand why this option returns each time, if "public utility" is a poor choice, then "utility computing" is infinitely more so. In fact I have no problem ending the sentence with "like a public utility. What is wrong with the term "public utility", or with "public"? Please enlighten me, is there a ethical/moral issue against using it here I am not aware of? Comparison to a "public house" perhaps, or what other sensibilities are there with the term? I simply don't understand the objections against "public utility", except when it comes from "private cloud" proponents, i would say they are oversensitive if that is the case, we hardly imply that cloud computing cannot be delivered by "private entities", only by "monopolies". IMHO comparisons with the services that cloud computing provides with public utilities like the provision of water, gas or electricity only clarifies what cloud computing is. Mahjongg (talk) 23:07, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

It more that I just don't think its needed in the first sentence. It clearly needs a little more explanation as there is subtleties on quite what is meant by utility public or otherwise. This to me sugests a second sentence.
I do like you version with served which seems to capture the relationship better than just used.--Salix (talk): 00:15, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Utility computing is central to cloud computing (some argue they are one and the same - I would say cloud is a form of utility computing or that it provides utility computing) - indeed Nick Carr's "The Big Switch" arguably got the ball rolling by comparing it to electricity. It should absolutely, without doubt be in the first sentence and I don't think there's much contention about that point, rather what form it appears as. Looking at the quality of the public utility article though, and knowing that there's already a bit of a jump to get from computing to utilities, I think we either need to spoon feed our readers with the utility computing article (which concisely describes the relationship between the two in the LEDE) and/or give the electricity example. If we really want to dumb things down then the latter is probably the better option, but with the advent of cloud, utility computing is hardly "defunct and specific (in the wrong way)", rather alive and well. I really don't know how we could improve on this definition:
  • Utility computing is the packaging of computing resources, such as computation and storage, as a metered service similar to a traditional public utility (such as electricity, water, natural gas, or telephone network).
On the subject of using the verb "serve" - the first thing I think of is client-server. Other terms I considered were "transferred" (again Internet/networking/client-server) and "consumed" (apparently too technical) so I think "used" is functional, without being too specific (and wrong). -- samj inout 00:46, 12 March 2010 (UTC)

Another option would be to drop the "utility" ref altogether (as suggested by Salix), but run with "electricity" instead (which is a potent analogy that needs no explanation whatsoever):

  • Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are used by computers and other devices on-demand, like electricity.

Sure we may rouse a few "oversensitive" cloud-as-a-supermarket types by we're armed to the teeth with reliable sources - even the Macmillan Dictionary agrees with us. Say "public" and it'll be on for young and old. -- samj inout 01:08, 12 March 2010 (UTC)

I like the "like electricity" analogy, but the sentence as a whole still doesn't really convey the message too well, it seems to be the "whereby". But perhaps its because I'm not a native English speaking person. I thnik this is slightly more understandable:
  • Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, where shared resources, software and information are offered to computers and other devices on-demand, like electricity.
Mahjongg (talk) 12:10, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Ok so we're nearly there... the used/transferred/consumed/served/offered verb needs to be vague I think, because there are so many different modes of operation (datacenters, peer-to-peer, volunteer computing, etc.) - and it's more than "offering", it's actually making use of the resources. I think "consumed by" is technically correct, but "used by" is ok if we want to dumb it down a bit. offering/serving/transferring is more like client-server/Internet, which focuses on the transfer of data rather than the actual application. -- samj inout 12:47, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
I would maybe have said "provided" rather than "used" or "served". IMHO, "electricity" isn't much of an improvement though... is it like electricity in that you can't see it, or it can be stored in batteries, or it can electrocute you? I think we need to be more specific about the electrical power industry, if that's the analogy we want to use. Letdorf (talk) 13:29, 12 March 2010 (UTC).
"Provided". Nice. Seems obvious now, and while there's still a hint of client-server in there, that's indeed the reality for much of cloud today. I think the electricity analogy is fine as is but if it's a problem for you then how about "the electricity grid"? Hmm... readability suffers. One could argue the [generic] electricity analogy also satisfies the private cloud parade (where in this case it's a generator rather than a grid), in which case the extra precision is maybe unnecessary/unhelpful? I still think utility computing is by far the best article to link here, and all the others I've looked at (including electricity grid are really throwing our readers in the deep end. -- samj inout 14:25, 12 March 2010 (UTC)

I've made the change suggested by Letdorf above and think what we have right now reads well and is far better than anything we've had previously:

  • Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are provided to computers and other devices on-demand, like electricity.

I'm not sure there's much more improvement necessary (or indeed, possible). -- samj inout 14:30, 12 March 2010 (UTC)

The last word "electricity" is not too clear. Maybe "household electricity" or "tap water" or something to indicate definitively that it is something sold on a metered, per unit basis. Just my two cents. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 22:57, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Yes, "tap water": is better, as at least you can't be "electrocuted by it (alone) ", and you can "see it" (just like "information"<grin>). Oh ,and using "utility computing" is certainly "throwing the reader in the deep end", as it obviously needs an explanation of its own. For many its just another word for "cloud computing", and I don't understand what is helpful about using another similar word that is just as, or even more, unknown to the reader, while trying to explain what the first word means. Also "cloud computing's" first sentence should not directly link to an old and defunct variation of itself. Mahjongg (talk) 00:34, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
P.S. I simply added "or tap water" to the end, as I think it makes it extra clear we mean "electricity" to be a service, disambiguation it from other meanings. Mahjongg (talk) 00:39, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
No, "tap water" is original research, and utility computing being "an old and defunct version of itself" is your opinion. The utility computing article is exactly what we are referring to:
If you don't agree then please tell me why, and what we need to do to fix the other article. Honestly I think what we've got is good enough, linking to the utility computing article would be better, and whatever we decide the discussion will be brought up again in 6-12 months with different participants and quite possibly a completely different result too. -- samj inout 04:13, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
To put things in perspective, we have spent well over 5,000 words discussing 20, and this is definitely not the first time there has been a large scale debate about the lead - probably about 1,000 words of discussion for every word that appears in the article - trying to find a consensus where there is quite probably none to be found. -- samj inout 04:19, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
Are you serious? "electricity" is fine, but "tap water" is original research? Well that is the most contrived reason I read on WP for a long time. I don't know why "utility computing" is your "hobby horse", but you seem to be on a mission to slip it into the lead sentence, which just wont do. As a word alone it does nothing to explain anything to the average reader, and as a link Utility computing doesn't link to your neat definition sentence, but redirects the reader away to an article that tries to give a specific definition to "cloud computing", the very thing we want to avoid. Removing "tap water" isn't a big deal, but it just makes it a little clearer we are talking about utilities without actually using the word "utility". That we need so much words discussing the first sentence is because the first sentence is so important. For many people this will be the first definition they read of what cloud computing is. So many institutions have an need to define "cloud computing" to fit their purpose that we cannot allow them to define the first sentence. Therefore the first sentence must not only be readable, and factual, but also should be devoid of any specific definition. That includes a specific definition such as "utility computing", which for example claims that "its a metered service", which well may not apply in the future. There is no reason to include it in the first sentence, and there is plenty of opportunity a few sentences later to mention it, just not in the first sentence. Mahjongg (talk) 21:06, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
Actually being a measured/metered service is pretty much universally considered an essential characteristic of cloud computing, and you have yet to demonstrate why the utility computing article does not do an adequate job of explaining the message that we are trying to get across. Rather than repeatedly accusing me of trying "to sneak in a non generic definition again" et al, how about you stick to the facts. Do you have any examples of where this is not the case as saying it "may not apply in the future" sounds like original research and/or opinion too... -- samj inout 04:17, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
To be metered or not metered, that is the question. (is it?) Listen, I do not have a crystal ball, but neither do you. I gave just one example by expanding the definition to that of "utility computing" in the first sentence is a bad idea, actually Anna Frodesiak has put it quite well. For a visitor to have to read a second article just to understand the first sentence of the lead will be too much. . That, and that alone, should be more than enough reason not to put the link to utility computing into the lead sentence. Mahjongg (talk) 14:36, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
Links are helpful (except perhaps if there are too many) and are very often included in article leads. Most readers will understand what we're talking about at first glance and those that don't can click through to find out more. Let's not forget that a second ago you were promoting linking to the public utility article. -- samj inout 18:21, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

Yes, this certainly is the mother of all threads. I just thought concerned editors would throw out a few tweaked opening sentences, without having to state their rationale only in the edit summary.

As for the last bit, as a non-partisan layperson, linking to "utility computing" in the lead is problematic. For a visitor to have to read a second article just to understand the first sentence of the lead will be too much. I suggest excluding the last bit if a clear example cannot be found. I am almost out of substitutes to suggest. Maybe "...household utility", "...public works utility", "...electricity from the power grid", "...electricity from a power company", hmmmm, okay, I'm fresh out. What else is metered? Actually, the way it is now using "electricity" is not bad, except that readers might not understand that it means "metered electricity". Anna Frodesiak (talk) 00:02, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

If only it were that simple... anyway "electricity from the power grid", or rejigging to get "the electricity grid" in there would presumably be satisfactory (albeit IMO completely unnecessary). -- samj inout 04:07, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
That is exactly why I added "or tap water", as its another public utility, just as in some places natural gas is, Mahjongg (talk) 00:58, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
...but it is not used in this context, which makes it original research at worst and a poor choice at best. -- samj inout 04:07, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
What "context"? I'm just trying to convey the meaning that "electricity" must be read as a public service, not as "an electric potential", or "power source". Is that so hard to grasp? Adding "or tap water" (another utility service) is just a way to accomplish that the reader understands we are talking about public services here, without using the word "public" (as that may "offend some" editors here, as you claim). Your claim that adding "or tap water" is "original research" seems to be only based on mis-reading ("wishful reading"?) of an aborted entry in my edit summary that read "added or", while it should have been ' ' added "or tap water" ' ' (I wrestled with how to solve the double use of quotes, and inadvertently pressed enter) , In your zeal you seem to have thought it was a "self confession" of me that I "added Original Research". Otherwise your obsession with calling my edits "original research" makes no sense to me, and I think not to most other editors. I think this silliness has taken enough of my time, and this thread is long enough now. Mahjongg (talk) 14:36, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
Actually I just thought that using an edit summary of "added or" for original research was ironically entertaining... it was that or a [citation needed] tag. -- samj inout 18:23, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

Yep, "electricity" could mean so many things. It is ambiguous. If the suggested disambiguations are "out of context" and "original research", please explain why. I'm just not following that. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 19:47, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

It's not ambiguous when you link to the utility computing article (which explains very clearly, exactly the message we are trying to get across). I've not found a reliable source comparing cloud computing to tap water, and for every one that exists there would be 100 comparing it to electricity. Hence original research. -- samj inout 21:08, 14 March 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough. But it would still be better to compare it to something other than utility computing for the aforementioned reasons. Can you think of something we can compare it to that is self-evident -- something that does not need a reference? I am not seeing any difference between tap water and electricity, as they both are simple examples of something that you can tap into, and that is paid for in a metered fashion. I know this is a lot of energy to spend on a single word, but this is really the crux. This is the single term that will help everyone understand. Your suggestions are very welcome. Best, Anna Frodesiak (talk) 01:18, 15 March 2010 (UTC)
The "single term that will help everyone understand" is "utility" (even the public utility article says "usually just utility"). "Traditional" utility is vague and "public" utility is arguably wrong (both because it could be a private utility and because for many this refers to government ownership rather than public accessibility). These "aforementioned reasons" are still eluding me - I see I just don't like it (literally "I don't like the term 'utility computing'") and the claim that "For a visitor to have to read a second article just to understand the first sentence of the lead will be too much". Check out the top 5 Featured Articles for engineering & technology (35_mm_film, Atomic_line_filter, Autostereogram, Matthew Boulton & Construction of the World Trade Center). ALL of them use links in the lead extensively and the WP:LEDE article specifically encourages this. If the word "utility" is linked, most will understand - those that do not (or simply want further explanation) can click through for more details. The only question that remains then is what article to link to, and when you have two concepts (utility and computing) and a perfectly good article bridging them (utility computing) then why on earth would you not use it? The only justification provided for this is that it "may not apply in the future", which is nonsense - and even if it were true we could always revisit the article were that ever the case. -- samj inout 04:53, 15 March 2010 (UTC)
The "single term that will help everyone understand" is "utility" Agreed, and I don't object so much to using the word utility at the end of the first sentence, I object to using utility computing at the end., not because "I don't like it", but because it's not needed to make the sentence more understandable, and because it introduces an alternative meaning to "cloud computing". The examples you give to explain "why it is allowed to do so", only explain that it is allowed to use a lot of links in the first sentence, each a "breakdown" term of the subject involved. There is indeed nothing wrong with that, and we are doing that. Let me try to explain my objection, lets pretend we try to explain what a "chicken" is. This is the normal way:
The chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus) is a  domesticated fowl.
Now what you seem to want to do is claiming there is a need to change the sentence to this
The chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus) is a  domesticated fowl, like the Leghorn
Yes, I know its a slightly absurd example. But what I mean by it is that you use another slightly different and more specific version of "cloud computing" in a sentence designed to define cloud computing in as abstract terms as possible. Doing that destroys that the sentence is meant to be as abstract as possible, and suddenly points to one specific example of it, in the case of "cloud computing" to the specific version of "utility computing", and in the (slightly absurd) case of the chicken into the specific Leghorn. As I said, I don't object to the word "utility" (But I do think the reason for not using "public utility" is silly), I object to a link to the subject utility computing at the end. Mahjongg (talk) 11:53, 15 March 2010 (UTC)
If the difference between "utility computing" and "cloud computing" is subtle and uncertain, then it's probably best not to compare the two when trying to define cloud computing in as few words as possible. As for the phrase "public utility", since this is only an analogy, and a very broad one at that, I can't see how the fact that some clouds may be considered "private" (which can probably be considered as something of a special case anyway) as being a valid objection to using it. Letdorf (talk) 14:42, 15 March 2010 (UTC).
Ok we've just cracked 5,000 words discussing one. Run with "public utility" and I'll ignore its alternative meaning (government run) and hope the private cloud parade will also ignore it so as to avoid yet another time wasting debate about the lead. It's not like I even believe in private cloud so it suits my personal preferences just fine. -- samj inout 14:54, 15 March 2010 (UTC)

For what its worth, I too hope that cloud computing won't be "government run", (many utilities are NOT ran by governments you know). Concerning "private cloud", what is there to "believe", you have "private virtual networks" too. "private cloud computing" will probably at best be an obscure diversion from the norm (but I don't "predict" anything), if the "private cloud" evangelists make a fuss about "private" in the lead sentence, (used in a wholly different context) then thats their hyper sensitivity and problem. Mahjongg (talk) 23:17, 15 March 2010 (UTC)

I doubt there'll be much "government run" cloud (most of it will be partially/fully outsourced) - my point was that by talking about "public utilities" some readers will assume we are talking about "government run" utilities. Regarding private cloud, a Merryl Lynch MD at Cloud Connect last week said "I'm just going to call a private cloud a data center.", which is about right. -- samj inout 16:29, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
Well maybe that mirrors that you have learned (by example) that most "public utilities" are run by the state, in my case I have learned (by example) that very few (actually I know none) of the "public utilities" are run by the state. I think it will be different from region to region. In fact I don't expect that many people who read "public utility" would automatically assume that this thus -must- imply that its "state run". Its certainly not stated or implied in the rest of the lede, Its a moot point I think. If there are signs that this really is an issue, then you can explicitly express it somewhere else in the lede. Mahjongg (talk) 18:52, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
I can't think of any state run utilities off the top of my head... though I did one work for one that was in a past life (Telecom Australia aka Telstra). Probably more true of developing countries than the west these days. -- samj inout 10:21, 23 March 2010 (UTC)
I'm puzzled, if you do not connect "public utilities" with "state run", then why do you suppose the readers will? But no matter..., I'm just curious that is all. Mahjongg (talk) 16:38, 23 March 2010 (UTC)
Well, most of the public utility article carries on about the things being government run for a start - mentions governments about a dozen times over the space of a few short paragraphs! -- samj inout 00:00, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
Ah, well then its a good thing we do not link directly to that article. In defense of the article, it does have a "The examples and perspective in this article deal primarily with the United States and do not represent a worldwide view of the subject. Please improve this article and discuss the issue on the talk page." header. But yes, the narrow-mindedness of this bad article explains some things. It does indeed need some good cleaning up. Still I do not expect even Americans to have a pavlov reaction to Public utility such that they automatically assume it must be government run, one can only hope. Mahjongg (talk) 00:12, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
I guess it depends on what you're used to... here in Europe I'll bet there's plenty who have different ideas. Anyway "public" as a prefix to anything (including "cloud") is problematic - I'm glad someone removed it from the article. -- samj inout 11:58, 30 March 2010 (UTC)
At the risk of extending an already much too long thread, "public utility" is too abstract and broadly defined. IMHO it would help to reference the electricity grid as an example. Wtsao (talk) 01:20, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Personally I don't have any problem with that. Adding "grid" solves the "problem of electricity as an abstraction" quite neatly. Mahjongg (talk) 11:22, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Ok so let's go with electricity grid then. -- samj inout 10:01, 5 May 2010 (UTC)


At the top of the page is a diagram which is supposed to help explain what cloud computing is. There's a wavy outline; that's the cloud, I guess. Inside the cloud are names of a bunch of vendors (I think, some of them I don't recognize); all of them are connected to each other (meaning they cooperate with each other?), but none is connected to anything outside. Outside are a bunch of unlabeled computer symbols, which I suppose are personal computers (but they all look alike; isn't one of the ideas of cloud computing that you could use a computer-like tool with very little power to run a program in the cloud that takes considerable power? or am I just thinking of a dumb terminal?). There are lines drawn from each of these computer symbols to the cloud, meaning what, they get rained on? It reminds me of one of those diagrams where everything is connected to everything, and IMHO it's not helpful at all. I don't know if there are better diagrams; maybe this one :-). Mcswell (talk) 21:32, 10 April 2010 (UTC)

Unfortunately there's copyright problems with that image ;) I created the diagram a year or two ago to indicate that the cloud computing services were provided from "within" the Internet, that there was some connectivity between the various services (think Intercloud) and that the many edge devices were just clients (be those PCs, mobiles, etc.). Painting a picture of cloud without getting into original research is *hard*. -- samj inout 14:37, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
Agree that the diagram doesn't do a good job depicting cloud computing and isn't helpful at all.Wtsao (talk) 03:32, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
I agree that it can be improved and am open to suggestions. Removing it without discussion is vandalism though. -- samj inout 09:57, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
Vandalism, or boldness? Depends on whether you are assuming good faith, I guess. Letdorf (talk) 11:47, 27 April 2010 (UTC).
Agreed, though in context this is vandalism IMO. -- samj inout 11:49, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
  • Wikipedia's definition of vandalism: "Vandalism is any addition, removal, or change of content made in a deliberate attempt to compromise the integrity of Wikipedia. Any good-faith effort to improve the encyclopedia, even if misguided or ill-considered, is not vandalism. Even harmful edits that are not explicitly made in bad faith are not vandalism."
  • Sam, would you still be so protective if this was not your image? It's about as useful as [6] - which you also authored. Consensus on this matter is against you so I am going to remove it. Note that since you do not WP:OWN the cloud computing article we don't have to default to your opinion on the matter. Wtsao (talk) 02:41, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
I honestly don't care who creates a diagram so long as it helps to illustrate the topic; finding appropriately licensed content is sufficiently difficult that it's usually easier just to create it from scratch. Claiming that "consensus on this matter is against [me]" based on your opinion and that of one other editor (who was actually asking if there was a better image - so far there isn't) isn't the way it works. The image is arguably better than nothing so until something better comes along it should remain. -- samj inout 10:29, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
The service providers, for the most part, are also really on the edge of the cloud just like the clients. I was going to see if the diagram at reference 6 was a better model than the current diagram, but that link appears to be broken. Maybe something more in the style of [7]? Frank MacCrory (talk) 00:48, 10 May 2010 (UTC)
Actually I think that's exactly the difference between client-server computing over the Internet (where all nodes are at the edge of the network regardless of whether they are client, server or both) and cloud computing (where services span many large datacenters at the core of the network ala Amazon, Google, Microsoft). -- samj inout 11:27, 10 May 2010 (UTC)


I would find it helpful if the "Comparisons" sxn could be expanded, or if there were links to somewhere that expanded on the comparisons. I have a particularly hard time understanding the diff between "Client-server" computing and cloud computing, and the couple-line comparison didn't enlighten me. The hyperlinked Wikipedia article on client-server computing doesn't mention clouds, so it doesn't clarify the situation. Can someone help me, by expanding this sxn? Or else I'll conclude that Larry Ellison is right in saying that "cloud computing has been defined as 'everything that we already do'" (under Criticisms, at the end of the article). Mcswell (talk) 21:44, 10 April 2010 (UTC)

I was trying to keep a lid on this section, but in terms of client-server specifically, cloud computing can be seen as the second major paradigm shift (the first being from mainframes to client-server and the second being "back" to a centralised "cloud" of computers). Look at it like this - the Internet kept us amused by passing packets between edge nodes (some clients, some servers, some both) - like the electricity grid without power stations - but now we're adding computing capacity to the core. -- samj inout 14:35, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
IMHO, there is no consensus regarding cloud computing as a paradigm shift. It's much more of an incremental conceptual evolution crossed with overzealous marketing hype.Wtsao (talk) 01:28, 25 April 2010 (UTC)
Google search for "cloud computing is a paradigm shift". -- samj inout 09:56, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
Google SERPs are not a reliable source. Wtsao (talk) 02:05, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
So pick one. -- samj inout 09:25, 5 May 2010 (UTC)


I've both welcomed and warned User:Wtsao following a string of unconstructive edits to this and related articles, particularly given their overtly stated bias and some WP:V, WP:NPOV and other problems with their edits. Whether or not this is the result of a conflict, removing content and images, promoting the disputed criticism section, etc. should be discussed here first. -- samj inout 01:02, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

Sam, there is no excuse for bulk reverting my edits. That's vandalism. I spent hours working on this. Also, please avoid calling attention to yourself by calling the kettle black. Unless you can keep your COI under control, I advise you to stay away from the cloud computing article altogether. Wtsao (talk) 10:01, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
When you're back from your block I'll be happy to discuss any changes you propose here on the talk page. -- samj inout 14:36, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
That's great. Let's talk. I think we could have done without the bogus IP sock charges, but 72 hours without Wikipedia is no big deal.Wtsao (talk) 02:03, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
Per the blocking admin, "if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it's probably a duck". -- samj inout 10:19, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Tagged article with multiple issues

Unfortunately, my interaction with SamJohnston has convinced me that he is not going to back down from trying to WP:OWN this article and is resisting any changes to "his" sections. Since he also happens to be working for a leading "cloud computing" vendor this is a major problem.Wtsao (talk) 10:39, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

I wrote this article long before I started at Google and in the absence of supporting policy violations the only "major problem" is your personal attacks and vandalism. I'm merely asking you to discuss sweeping changes here before making them, and as you can see above we have made significant effort to reach consensus on controversial issues like the WP:LEDE. -- samj inout 10:53, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
I have had similar dealings with Samj. He is a very resistant to change and he seems to being very territorial about the cloud computing page, possibly representing a conflict of interest. (talk) 04:35, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
I was resistant to "your" criticism section (and still am, and I've explained why, repeatedly). When Wtsao returns from their holiday I'll be happy to discuss whatever changes they propose. -- samj inout 14:35, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
I'm back from my vacation. I'm going to retag the article now and open a few sections on the discussion pages so we can work towards consensus. Wtsao (talk) 01:52, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
I've lost count of the number of times I've told you that alleging WP:COI without justification is a personal attack - it's now at least 15 - and yet you persist. You've also accused me of trying to WP:OWN the article a dozen times. The tags are not appropriate and let's not forget that bias *against* a subject (which you have declared to have against cloud computing for whatever reason) is equally problematic. If you have a problem with the neutrality of a specific claim then discuss the specific claim - tarring the subject with templates because you don't believe in it is not on. -- samj inout 20:19, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
  • I don't have a problem with genuine cloud computing. The concept of tapping into commodity computing resources as you can tap into electricity is an important one. What I have a problem with is that you are an aggressive part of the marketing effort to rebrand the Internet as cloud computing. Everything under the sun is suddenly "the cloud". Also I take issue with the overly POV stance taken in this article. It reads like an advertisement without giving due weight to the risks. There are real issues with relinquishing control of all of your data to "cloud" providers and the governments they are beholden to.
  • I've explained my justification for calling you out for WP:COI on your talk page: WP:COI: "A Wikipedia conflict of interest (COI) is an incompatibility between the aim of Wikipedia, which is to produce a neutral, reliably sourced encyclopedia, and the aims of an individual editor." Your aim is to hype up cloud computing in the interests of one of the leading cloud computing vendors which you claim you work for on your blog. Yeah, that's a conflict of interest my friend.
  • Thought experiment: if the world decided cloud computing wasn't such a good idea outside of very limited niches, would your professional career suffer? You've tied your career so closely to cloud computing I can't see how you could claim to be neutral. When somebody's livelyhood depends on them not understanding something you can depend on it. That is the definition of conflict of interest. Do I need to spell it out any more clearly? Wtsao (talk) 05:17, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Fortunately Wikipedia relies on evidence so if you make a claim like "your aim is to hype up cloud computing in the interests of one of the leading cloud computing vendors" then the onus is on you to justify it, typically with specific policy violating edits. Good luck with that because I've barely had time to make any substantive edits since I started at Google (mostly because what time I have to spend on Wikipedia is consumed by pointless discussions and cleaning up after disruptive editors out to promote themselves and/or smear their competitors) and even if I did I'd be careful to ensure they were neutral and verifiable.
In any case while I can't talk about what I do work on, I can tell you it has nothing whatsoever to do with our cloud computing services so smearing the article with {{COI}} (particularly without being able to identify specific problematic edits - presumably because there are none) is not on. Similarly, you claim there is original research in the security section yet it appears to be well referenced. Finally you claim that the criticism section needs to remain to balance the article ("so that the reader is warned to read the rest of the entry with a generous portion of salt") and yet that it still needs to be tagged for neutrality.
I'm going to be WP:BOLD and remove the tags. You are welcome to re-add them iff you identify specific issues that we need to tend to, but even then they will remain only until such time as those specific issues are resolved. Smearing a subject you don't like with templates is a common tactic for civil POV pushing but the templates are intended to improve article quality, not as a tool for disruptive editing and certainly not as a way to attack other editors. -- samj inout 11:02, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Funny you should say that considering you're the guy usually engaging in WP:DE. "Tarring" articles to excess is one of your favorite techniques: [8], [9]. The tags on the SaaS article fill the entire screen! Is that because SaaS is a competing marketing term? Excuse me for suspecting this is this all being directed from your employer's PR department. Would that be COI? Wtsao (talk) 19:19, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Holy smoking gun batman! You don't suppose I'd be promoting "SaaS" if this was "all being directed from [my] employer's PR department" rather than drawing attention to the article's many issues? -- samj inout 03:29, 6 May 2010 (UTC)

Position of criticism section temporary bandaid to neutrality problem?

I've moved the criticism section to the top of the article because I feel the current article is not neutral and having it closer to the beginning at least balances it out a bit. I agree that it would be best to try and integrate the criticism more thoroughly into the article but I'm not sure how we do that. Ideas? Wtsao (talk) 10:46, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

Why you would do that when there is consensus above to remove it is beyond me. Integrate relevant comments into sections describing the issues themselves (which were created for exactly this purpose). -- samj inout 10:50, 27 April 2010 (UTC)
I don't agree that there is consensus to remove the criticism section. There is consensus that the article is not neutral and that the criticism section is a sign of that. It would be better to have a neutral article without a criticism section, but a bandaid is better than nothing.Wtsao (talk) 02:02, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
There is? Where? -- samj inout 10:17, 5 May 2010 (UTC)


As this article has been undergoing an edit war, I have in accordance with WP:PREFER reverted it to the condition in which it existed prior to the beginning of the edit war and fully protected it for three days. This is not an endorsement of either version. Please take the opportunity to discuss the development of the article at its talk page. --Moonriddengirl (talk) 22:38, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

Thanks. -- samj inout 20:10, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Circumnavigation of cloud computing

So long as the video game industy exists, they would still need to have superfast computers; which should mean that old software can be bought cheep to put on better systems. Free software also is being created, which in 20 years would be better quality than the current Microsoft programmes. This is the new way that I would have to work. I do not want to use the cloud! It would be a good idea to write on the artical ways on how to get around the cloud

Sounds like a great topic for an opinion piece on your blog. WP:NOTOPINION, WP:NOTBLOG, WP:NOTFORUM, etc. -- samj inout 21:29, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

removal of archiving bot on discussion page

Consensus can take time to build. From what I understand there's a bot on these pages that archives discussion older than 30 days automatically. I propose we remove it and allow the discussion to develop at a more natural pace. Not everyone that can contribute to this article is constantly patrolling the discussion page. Wtsao (talk) 01:59, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

If you take a close look at the archives you see a lot of the issues this article faces today (e.g., ownership) have popped up repeatedly in the past. If we didn't obscure bad behavior by archiving it out of sight and mind it wouldn't be so easy to get away with.Wtsao (talk) 02:51, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
For the thousandth time, you need to get WP:CONSENSUS first. This talk page is unmanageable and the archives are always available for anyone who wants to dig through them. Manual archiving (which I took care of for many months before we deployed the bot) is a huge PITA and 30 days without comment is more than enough to declare a discussion dead. -- samj inout 20:10, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
Spare me the lecture. Your editing history makes it clear that you don't care about WP:CONSENSUS except when it serves your purposes. Your interpretation of consensus is getting your way by default while wearing down anyone who disagrees with edit warring and personal attacks while paying lip service to discussion. This is not my opinion. This is an easily proven fact. For example, just today you added back the Servers category to the cloud computing template for the 4th time [10] despite clear and irrefutable consensus to the contrary [11]. I've warned you [12], again [13]. If you continue down this road you may get banned from editing cloud computing articles. Wtsao (talk) 04:47, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Where is your consensus to remove the archiving bot? You proposed it and then you just went ahead and did it anyway, despite my opposition and explanation why. There is no conspiracy and we're not trying to "obscure bad behavior by archiving it". -- samj inout 09:53, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
30 days without a comment is plenty long enough for a discussion to be archived. Exposing "bad behavior" is not a valid reason for clogging an article talk page. --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 14:50, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Consensus can't be reached on a stopwatch and 30 days is unreasonably short. Most editors don't spend all their time camping out on the cloud computing article. Wtsao (talk) 18:41, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Checking once a month is hardly "camping".--SarekOfVulcan (talk) 18:42, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Who owns the cloud computing article?

Last week I spent several hours editing this article and had all 15 of my edits removed in bulk by SamJohnston. I understand if some changes are disputed, but a blanket rejection of all edits is unproductive and discourages future contribution. It would have been better to revert only those changes that are truly in dispute and then discuss those disputes.

Anything else indicates a pattern of ownership which goes against WP:OWN : "All Wikipedia content[1] is edited collaboratively. Wikipedia contributors are editors, not authors, and no one, no matter how skilled, has the right to act as if they are the owner of a particular article." and "An editor disputes minor edits concerning layout, image use, and wording in a particular article daily. The editor might claim the right, whether openly or implicitly, to review any changes before they can be added to the article."

Examples of relatively minor edits which were bulk reverted: [14] [15] [16]

More from the policy: "An editor comments on other editors' talk pages with the purpose of discouraging them from making additional contributions. The discussion can take many forms; it may be purely negative, consisting of threats and insults, often avoiding the topic of the article altogether."

Examples of such behavior:

  • [17] where Sam welcomes me to Wikipedia and then immediately accuses me (hypocritically) of "suspected COI" in violation of WP:BITE and WP:AGF. Note that Sam works for a cloud computing vendor and the amount of time he spends "defending" cloud computing articles from other contributors in the middle of the work week may suggest that this is part of his work duties.
  • [18] where Sam warns me for vandalism of the cloud computing article. This is after he has bulk reverted all 15 of my edits. Take a look at the history and judge for yourself if they were vandalism. I believe these remarks and many more were intended to antagonize and discourage a new contributor.

There are many more examples, but I'll leave it at that for now. Wtsao (talk) 02:28, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

You were already blocked for these edits (not to mention WP:SOCKing), your appeal was denied, your second appeal was denied and your third appeal (in which you declared it an elaborate fraud of an experienced Wikipedia manipulator) was unsurprisingly denied as well. Now you're here claiming my interest in cloud computing might be "part of my work duties"? I work for Google because of my interest in cloud computing if anything, not vice versa - unless you have supporting policy violations then claiming WP:COI is a personal attack, as I've told you a dozen times already. If you want to keep your editing privileges then I suggest you concentrate on the content, not the contributor. -- samj inout 19:59, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
  • At least you are using logical fallacies consistently. My blocking, which you instrumented so masterfully has nothing to do with your bad behavior which I have documented clearly in the above. You are free to address the issues above, but please refrain from WP:PA and making idle threats. I know you're just trying to antagonize me but your baiting won't work anymore. I've researched your edit history a few months back and have noticed a disturbing pattern of aggressive behavior. You violate pretty much every wikipedia policy WP:WAR, WP:PA, WP:CIVIL, WP:AGF, WP:BITE, WP:LAWYER, WP:COI, all while attacking others for their violation. Pot, meet, kettle. I'm surprised you've lasted so long. From now on I will ignore any of your WP:PA. I won't even respond. Wtsao (talk) 04:32, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
"I won't even respond." Is that a promise? -- samj inout 09:24, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Cloud computing security merge

A separate cloud computing security article has been created which is basically just a list of security issues that I believe could be condensed down to a few sentences in the cloud computing article. What do you think? -- samj inout 17:45, 2 May 2010 (UTC)

Merge I agree with the idea to merge—the information would help make this article more comprehensive (á la WP:FACR) and doesn't merit the detail it has received in the dedicated article (per WP:UNDUE). —Eustress talk 16:09, 3 May 2010 (UTC)
Merge. The security article is rather thin standing alone. Seems like it could well be included as a section here. Hult041956 (talk) 17:26, 3 June 2010 (UTC)

Hi, I think cloud security is an extensive area, and worthy of a seperate page. I will do my best to update the page to contain more information, and then maybe you can see what you think? emma —Preceding undated comment added 15:32, 14 June 2010 (UTC).

Taxonomy of cloud computing

I propose the following revisions to the "layers of cloud computing":

  • remove clients layer. clients are not a layer in cloud computing any more than electricity devices are a layer of the electricity grid. clients are a layer in networking.
  • remove image that portrays the wrong layering scheme. Putting the image there locks-in a particular heading structure.
  • remove servers as a layer in cloud computing. Infrastructure includes servers.

The taxonomy in the cloud computing article is original research. Wtsao (talk) 02:31, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Also, I'd like to point out that insisting on this particular "taxonomy" / layering schema smacks of original research. Wtsao (talk) 02:48, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
The infrastructure/platform/application stack is pretty much irrefutable and the client and server layers were added so as to resolve pollution of the infrastructure and application layers with servers and clients respectively. There are notable servers (e.g. CloudRack) and clients (e.g. ChromeOS) designed specifically for cloud computing and there will be more and more going forward. The main difference (and another reason for the separation) is that these two layers are *products* while the other three are *services*. -- samj inout 20:07, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Original research on cloud security

The article makes various false claims regarding the security benefits of cloud computing. I tried correcting a few of these issues in several edits which were subsequently bulk reverted: [19], [20], [21] Wtsao (talk) 02:54, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Again, you were blocked for these edits. You have a clearly stated bias against cloud computing and there are many reliable sources discussing the security advantages (and disadvantages for that matter). -- samj inout 20:03, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
The only thing I have anything "against" is claiming that the Internet is Cloud computing and Cloud computing is the Internet. That's just nonsense marketing hype, which you are insistent on promoting. Wtsao (talk) 04:34, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
What's your point? I never claimed otherwise. -- samj inout 09:26, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
You removed referenced content, which by definition is not original research. -- samj inout 11:14, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

==forget it

Awkward sentence

Details are abstracted from the users who no longer have need of, expertise in, or control over the technology infrastructure "in the cloud" that supports them.

Could someone rewrite this sentence? Perhaps less passive? I'd fix it, but I have no idea what it means. I came here trying to find out what cloud computing is. I found a lot of information about editors having pissing matches, but I'm little the wiser on cloud computing and not feeling very secure when there are discussions about the meaning of the words "utility" etc. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:01, 7 May 2010 (UTC)

I think this was intended as a paraphrase of the cited source which reads: Cloud computing enables users and developers to utilize services without knowledge of, expertise with, nor control over the technology infrastructure that supports them. It is, almost literally, operating the service in a cloud. That's a good thing, because many companies lack the ability or desire to work with infrastructure. I'm not sure how "knowledge of" became "need of". Letdorf (talk) 13:08, 7 May 2010 (UTC).
Cloud computing is an extremely undefined concept. Many knowledgable people think it's total nonsense. Don't feel bad if you don't know what it is. (talk) 05:33, 19 May 2010 (UTC)
One could also argue that it's overdefined ;) -- samj inout 11:51, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

Bot settings

I just bumped it back down to 25 days so it can clean the page out a bit -- I'll move it back up to thirty after it runs. --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 17:41, 4 June 2010 (UTC)

Criticism section redux

The criticism section is once again a coatrack for random disparaging comments from individuals (which do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the communities they represent). It includes criticism by a CEO whose sales are directly affected by cloud computing (following a pattern of "abuse and embrace" that we've seen before), whose company has now completely embraced cloud computing with a 50 city tour, and which analysts have rejected as "complete nonsense". Following this there's an analyst whose opinion differs from that of his company (and which appear to have changed anyway) and finally a diatribe from a free software activist. Oh and it closes with an irrelevant ad for "Fabasoft Folio Cloud".

This is an obvious NPOV violation, giving undue weight to the negative faction, yet every time I touch it I get abused for repressing others opinions etc. If it must stay (I would argue that it shouldn't - integrate with the articles of those quoted or if the issue is notable then include it in the "Issues" section, which I created in part to avoid these useless soundbytes) then we should balance it with a good handful of quotes from notable individuals gushing about cloud and how it's going to cure AIDS and deliver world peace. Thoughts? -- samj inout 12:55, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

In general "Criticism sections" in Wikipedia articles are a bad idea, and should be discouraged, they generally tend to be "troll magnets" at best. In fact wikipedia has a policy that says its better to integrate any negative points into the article itself, instead of creating a "criticism section" . Mahjongg (talk) 23:14, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
While I agree with you 100%, I'm not touching it with a 10 ft pole until we have a clear consensus here. I would however appreciate if one of you could remove the blatant advertisement and ideally warn the user for their unhelpful contribution. I also agree that we should discuss valid points in the issues section (security, privacy, control, etc.) and leave the soundbytes and name dropping out altogether - it adds nothing and for every -ve quote we can find a dozen +ve ones. -- samj inout 00:58, 12 March 2010 (UTC)
Agreed, (also the ten feet pole sentiment, I'm fed up with bickering, thank you). Mahjongg (talk) 23:20, 15 March 2010 (UTC)
Ok, so let me put this another way: is there anyone who thinks that the dedicated criticism section needs to remain? If so, why? Why not just integrate the valid/notable points? -- samj inout 16:30, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
First, I think its strange that the section is called "criticism of the term", as nobody is criticizing the term "cloud computing", they are criticizing the idea(l) behind it, not the term. Secondly, I don't care much about criticism of Oracle's CEO, as it is obvious where it is coming from, and at the same time it's just as quickly retracted if that fits their "bottom line" better. Quite a different thing are the opinions spouted by Richard Stallman, yes he is something of a Zealot, but he does say what a lot of people think, (and fear) that cloud computing can become something that detriments the freedoms they have with Personal Computers. I do agree that these views and opinions should be integrated into the article. Mahjongg (talk) 22:13, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
Ok so unless anyone has anything to add I think we can call consensus fairly soon... -- samj inout 10:19, 23 March 2010 (UTC)
Yes, "criticism sections" always give me acid eructations, they simply always are a very bad idea. Mahjongg (talk) 00:19, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
I disagree with that generalization: sometimes a criticism section is appropriate, and this is such a case. Also I disagree with your statement that nobody is criticizing the term, since that really is the point of Larry Ellison's critique, as well as some of Richard Stallman's remarks. However, because the criticisms go beyond arguments purely about terminology and semantics, it would be appropriate to shorten the title from "Criticism of the term" to simply "Criticisms". Yes, one could bury these points elsewhere in the article, but I don't see that as an improvement. There are legitimate arguments to be made that the term "cloud computing" has become a heavily over-hyped buzzword, and that the cloud computing model, whatever that may mean, is not necessarily a panacea. For the sake of giving the article some balance, it would be best to retain the criticism section, and I encourage anyone who feels so inclined to improve it. JCLately (talk) 02:47, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
Also I would say that the quote from John Rymer is pretty lame, and that sentence should be removed. The entire rest of the article stands in opposition to the criticism section. Do we really need a criticism of the criticism within the criticism section, and such a weak one at that? As to the preceding line about Oracle launching a cloud computing tour, well that's pretty amusing, but it really doesn't contradict Ellison's point, so it's a bit of a non sequitur. I wouldn't object to taking it out or leaving it, for amusement value. JCLately (talk) 03:02, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
Larry's criticism is nonsense, and it's not the first time he's trashed a technology before fully embracing it. I believe comments like John Rymer's as well as the company's subsequent actions (not to mention his recent change in heart all but invalidate his earlier criticisms and as such they should be balanced per WP:NPOV or ideally removed. -- samj inout 07:50, 29 March 2010 (UTC)
RMS raises some interesting and valid points but generally goes overboard (as he is known to do - and I'm as big a fan of free software and the FSF as the next guy). The issues section was created to address these in turn, and it's doing a pretty good job I think, without becoming a WP:COATRACK for out of context soundbytes.
In any case, if you argue that the "criticism" section needs to be kept then in order to avoid giving it WP:UNDUE weight and maintain WP:NPOV we'll need to up some gushing quotes about cloud from Amazon, Google, Microsoft, etc. and add a "praise" section. -- samj inout 07:50, 29 March 2010 (UTC)
It seems to me that informed consensus on cloud computing is that it seems to be a massive rebranding / marketing campaign for many things that were previously in separate categories. I believe there may be a core to this that actually means something but the criticism of the term from across the board from the likes of RMS to Larry Ellison is spot on and we shouldn't let the hype pushers muddle the waters on this. I've moved the criticism to the top so that the reader is warned to read the rest of the entry with a generous portion of salt. Wtsao (talk) 03:30, 25 April 2010 (UTC)

I engaged in my own mini edit war with Samj over the criticism section. At that time it only contained the quote from Ellison. Then he finally relented and let the criticism section remain, but in doing so he added the anti-criticism quote from John Rymer. I thought we were finally making progress, but now he calls it a coatrack when he himself has added to it? I don't understand where Samj is coming from with this. Is he trying to poison the well? What is wrong with citing notable industry critics? (including Samj's own addition) (talk) 04:39, 29 April 2010 (UTC)

WP:NPOV. Really we should balance the "criticism" section with a "praise" section. Or integrate/remove it which is my preferred option. (The Oracle quotes are complete nonsense by the way - they just needed time to catch up - which they have - so you won't be hearing more like that from now on I'd say). -- samj inout 07:43, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
The whole article is already praise. The criticism section is in opposition to the whole rest of the article. There is your balance. (talk) 16:31, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
No it isn't. -- samj inout 11:15, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Yes it is. (talk) 07:49, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
What do you call the issues section then? "criticized by privacy advocates", "monitor at will, lawfully or unlawfully", "criticised on the grounds that the hand-picked set of goals and standards", "[security] is a contentious issue" etc.
In any case WP:NPOV (specifically the article structure section) states "segregation of text or other content into different regions or subsections, based solely on the apparent POV of the content itself, may result in an unencyclopedic structure and suggests that "a more neutral approach can result from folding debates into the narrative". That's why I'm integrating the various criticisms into the article rather than balancing the criticism with a "praise" section - please refrain from reverting these edits. -- samj inout 10:23, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
As insists on edit warring "their" criticism section back into the article in violation of WP:NPOV (e.g. [22], [23], [24], [25], [26], [27], [28], [29], [30], [31], [32]) I have added a "Praise of the term" section for balance. Currently we are giving WP:UNDUE weight to criticism because for every negative comment there are many, many positive ones. If the cloud haters belligerently insist on having a dedicated "criticism" section rather than integrated discussion then we don't really have any alternative. -- samj inout 15:26, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
WP:POINTy much? --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 15:31, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
Actually I didn't forget WP:POINT, rather figured that we'd either a> achieve neutrality by balancing the criticism section with a praise section or b> realise how ridiculous it is to record meaningless sound bites and achieve neutrality by removing both. Obviously I'd prefer to integrate the actual issues (rather than heavily biased opinions) into the article but every time I try is quick to revert. Is there a better alternative? I also considered reporting them for long-term edit warring. -- samj inout 15:41, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
How am I edit warring? I am trying to improve the organization of the article with my edits. I am also re-adding good information that was removed. I see that you added a praise section. I am glad to see that you are allowing both sides of the issue to be represented now. Adding information is better than removing it. (talk) 19:21, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
Uh oh, some one removed the praise section. This may upset the balance for people like SamJ. Did we agree to remove the praise section? Is this a problem for you? (talk) 23:50, 3 June 2010 (UTC)
I agree that the Praise section should go. How many Wikipedia articles with Criticism sections also include a "Praise" section? If any of these blatantly self-serving quotes are worthy of note, it would be better simply to add inline references to them or include them in footnotes. Elevating such material to the status of a separate Praise section does not strike me as a step toward "greater balance".
Furthermore, I reiterate my objection to the inclusion of John Rymer's vacuous retort to Larry Ellison's observation about use of the term "cloud computing". Aside from John Rymer's questionable notability, his statement that someone else's "comments are complete nonsense and he knows it" is patently unprovable, lacking in useful information content, and could be applied equally well to any assertion by anyone. JCLately (talk) 17:06, 4 June 2010 (UTC)
Well SamJ is the one who added both the John Rymer quote and the praise section. I agree with you that those sections seem awkward and inappropriate, but I let them pass because it made SamJ happy so he stopped removing the entire criticism section that I added. (talk) 20:05, 4 June 2010 (UTC)

The criticism section sounds ridiculous. If it were a paragraph describing why it's bad it would be ok. But a list of quoted snippets hardly seems appropriate. I agree that folding the section into the other sections seems more appropriate. Given the previous discussion and lack of consensus, I'm not going to remove it. But I do think it'd be a good idea. (talk) 21:17, 23 July 2010 (UTC)

You don't seem to understand. Critics by and large (a few of which are quoted in the criticism section) don't think cloud computing is bad. They think it is nonsense. The criticism section attempts to bring to light that point of view. For example, if some one says the moon is made out of cheese then you don't say cheese is bad. You tell them that is nonsense. (talk) 20:28, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

Stallman's criticism has nothing to do with the term and more to do with how cloud computing works (he doesn't like it). "Criticism of the term" shouldn't contain criticism of what cloud computing actually is. If Stallman said, however, that "cloud computing is a disingenious term" or something like that, it'd be a bit more relevant... but instead, he, as a computing freedom advocate, argues that it removes power/agency from those who buy into it. Also, it would be helpful to preface his comments with who he is (like what has been done with the other men mentioned in "Criticism of the term"). (talk) 03:34, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

Hmm, I see your point. There is a point of contention here. The section used to be called just "Criticism," but some one renamed it to "Criticism of the term" a while back due to the content of the section at that time. Perhaps the section should be renamed back to "Criticism" again? As for your suggestion to add Stallman's credentials to his paragraph... the paragraph did contain Stallman's credentials a few months ago, but SamJ removed them saying they were unnecessary. We could add them back, but I have found it is best not to war with SamJ unless you are prepared for a protracted battle. (talk) 20:36, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

I don't see how this recent addition fits in the criticism section - . It is attributing vague beneficial attributes to cloud computing. It probably belongs elsewhere in the article with all of the other vague stuff. (talk) 06:10, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

My original research, attempting to understand the cloud

I posted this on the cloud page a while ago but I quickly removed it when I realized it qualified as original research which is prohibited. But I want to post it here on the talk page to get some discussion started. Here was my post:

" Many technologies that have been branded as "cloud computing" have existed for a long time before the "cloud" label came into existence. Examples include databases, load balanced on-demand web hosting services, network storage, real time online services, hosted services in general, etc.

(Attempted explanation by author) It is difficult to see what all of these definitions have in common since they span such a wide range of services. The commonality between these definitions appears to be the way in which the services are delivered. Most definitions of cloud computing specify some kind of abstraction layer beyond which there is no information. For example, a hard drive is not in the cloud. But when you abstract the hard drive as some unknown storage medium then it is in the cloud. The more abstract and distant the storage medium the more cloudy it becomes. It is as if the cloud is everything for which we have no detailed information. Ignorance is literally (and not insultingly) part of the definition. To extend the hard drive analogy... a raid array is an abstraction that we can apply. When a hard drive is in a raid array we are no longer writing directly to the drive but rather we are writing to an abstract storage medium such that the user doesn't need any knowledge of the specific components of the array. The hard drive is now becoming cloudy. If we further abstract the raid array inside of a remote distributed file system and sell it as an online service then we have a typical "cloud storage" implementation. Note that these kinds of abstractions (e.g. raid and distributed storage) tend to come with the characteristics often attributed to cloud computing (e.g. redundancy, superior uptime, etc).

(Observation of author) Critics of cloud computing tend to be people in the know about the underlying technologies which power so-called cloud services. These people tend to see the cloud as a repackaging of old technology so they are understandably confused by all of the hype surrounding cloud computing. For the regular consumer, however, the "cloud packaging" represents an actual value in that it provides accessibility to said technologies without demanding any technical expertise in return. This kind of accessibility is also nothing new in the world of computing, but it now has a name - Cloud Computing. "

Discuss. (talk) 17:51, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

I think you make a number of good points, but I take issue with your statement that critics are "confused by all of the hype". Substitute "irritated" for "confused". JCLately (talk) 16:22, 4 June 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough. I was just trying to be respectful in my wording when I made the original post. I know I get irritated when businesses boast about offering cloud services when the exact same services have been available for years if not decades. Blatant relabeling of services for the sake of marketing isn't very becoming. But it's hard to blame businesses for taking advantage when consumers are so gullible. As Frank Gillett said, there is very little "net new" to cloud computing. (talk) 20:14, 4 June 2010 (UTC)
One of the changes is the expectation is the caller is coming over a long-haul connection, and the back end is expected to run at the scale of a datacentre. SteveLoughran (talk) 12:53, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

See Also: Dumb Terminal

Can someone please add this? Editor isn't working for me. (talk) 06:31, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

The future of Cloud- Smarter, faster, cheaper

What we are seeing in the Cloud environment right now is just a tip of the iceberg.The industry have certainly woken up to a highly efficient technological approach.This is what a smart thinking can do. My personal feeling in this matter is that the huge ground this technology has to cover is yet to be touched. A major part of the Business community is yet to start off with their "Cloud thoughts" of have just started thinking about it. So future surely looks good and it better be.

That's nice, but this is not a forum for the discussion of "cloud computing". Sebastian Garth (talk) 18:44, 16 August 2010 (UTC)

Just Curious

From my reading of the article, couldn't cloud computing be equally well defined as the practice of leaving implementation details undefined with regard to computers and networking? Therefore, if the article is about what cloud computing could possibly entail, then there's no limit to how much one could put in it. --Iavram (talk) 19:50, 1 September 2010 (UTC)

Community Cloud

To avoid posting my own research to the main article, I post here to seek the advice of the editors:

The term community cloud has been defined by NIST in their white paper which was released on May 11 , 2009( The first mention of this paper was on May 9. (

Before that however, me and a colleague have published a different (partially overlapping) definition of community cloud computing. This was submitted to the DEST 2009 conference which had a submission deadline of Feb. 28 2009 (, and to Arxiv on March 4th (, more than 2 months earlier than NIST.

Searching for Community Clouds and Community Cloud Computing on Google yields mostly results related to our work in the front pages, and in higher positions. Also, on Google Scholar you can see that there are roughly 9 citations (excluding self-citations) of our work already ( , )

We also have had press coverage, with mentions on Technology Review Blog (, L'Atelier (, SOAWorld Magazine ( among others.

Given the above, I believe our work should at least have a mention alongside NIST's definition in the community cloud section.

Cheers, AlexandrosM (talk) 10:24, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

I don't have time at the moment to assess your comments, but why not reply here with a brief suggestion for what wording you think should be changed in the article. Johnuniq (talk) 10:38, 20 September 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the response Johnuniq. What I would write is essentially the following:
"The NIST definition of a community cloud occurs where several organizations have similar requirements and seek to share infrastructure so as to realize some of the benefits of cloud computing. With the costs spread over fewer users than a public cloud (but more than a single tenant) this option is more expensive but may offer a higher level of privacy, security and/or policy compliance. Examples of community cloud include Google's "Gov Cloud".[58].
A finer-grained definition of community cloud [*1], also known as ambient cloud[*2], describes a group of users that all contribute resources to form a decentralised, peer-to-peer cloud. This aims at alleviating the vendor control and single point of failure criticisms associated with traditional clouds."
The first paragraph is essentially what is there already with a bit of a change at the top, and the second is my addition in under 50 words.
the first reference [*1] goes to our latest paper, ( while the second reference [*2] should go to the independent development of the same concept by Todd Hoff of (
cheers, AlexandrosM (talk) 08:49, 21 September 2010 (UTC)
The existence of a specific standard wouldn't contradict my claim that "cloud computing" itself is a simplistic and all-encompassing phrase. So if you want to talk about a standard, maybe it wouldn't be a bad idea to create a new page about the standard itself? --Iavram (talk) 13:55, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
I have no problem with creating a new page or whatever the editors deem appropriate. What interests me is to fix the one-sidedness of the reference. I have not seen any response in the last 15 days or so. Does this mean that no one objects to the edit? I'll wait another week or so, all feedback appreciated. AlexandrosM (talk) 08:16, 9 October 2010 (UTC)

Inappropriate style

I have removed some text recently added to the article because it is not appropriate for Wikipedia. The text added can be seen in these two edits. The main problem is that the text is too focused on alerting businesses to the ability to "build fully customized IT solutions", whereas the article should be an encyclopedic description of just what cloud computing is, using reliable sources. Similar text should not be added without gaining consensus from a discussion here. Johnuniq (talk) 06:08, 4 November 2010 (UTC)

+1; meaningless drivel to get the person quoted more widely known. SteveLoughran (talk) 08:57, 4 November 2010 (UTC)

google litigation

Does google sueing the us government really have any relevance to cloud computing? And even if it did what does it have to do with a wikipedia article? Woods01 (talk) 01:58, 25 November 2010 (UTC)

History of Cloud Computing

I don't have time to research this now, but does anyone know about AT&T PersonaLink? They were making use cloud computing back in 1994. I believe the used the phrase "filing cabinent in the cloud" for storing messages. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:54, 7 December 2010 (UTC)

Microsoft marketing hype

The entry:

   In March 2010, Microsoft's CEO, Steve Ballmer, made his strongest statement of betting
   the company's future in the cloud by proclaiming, "For the cloud, we're all in" and
   further stating, "About 75 percent of our folks are doing entirely cloud based or
   entirely cloud inspired; a year from now that will be 90 percent."

Seems to me to be marketing hype from Microsoft. Does Mr Ballmer have any public data to back up his claim?

I think this entry should be deleted.

Robert.Harker (talk) 18:50, 8 December 2010 (UTC)

Certainly the marketspeak aspect should be removed, but perhaps if one were motivated to read the reference, and the reference for the immediately following paragraph on Microsoft, the two paragraphs could be combined into a more encyclopedic statement about Microsoft's position. If the Ballmer quote, or rephrasing of it, is the only material available at Microsoft, I would agree that it should be removed as meaningless ephemera. Johnuniq (talk) 02:21, 9 December 2010 (UTC)

I looked at all three paragraphs. The first one was about one of the first experiments with cloud computing and the first opensource cloud implimentation.

The next two are simply "Microsoft is embracing the cloud" which almost every other computer or technology company is also doing. This is also not the first time Microsoft embraced the cloud. An Azure reference would be better. I am deleting the lines.

Robert.Harker (talk) 21:04, 9 December 2010 (UTC)

Might be interesting to look at the threats/opportunities of this world, where anyone whose business model is selling servers to companies (or other bits of infrastructure, like switches and routers), is threatened by the potential obsolescence of this capital-intensive purchasing model. Companies that want to survive (that's MS, the server vendors, maybe even Intel) need to move to a world where the clients are more than just the desktop, and the server side software runs "in the cloud", whatever that means. From that perspective, Azure is MS's response in this world.

Key Features

There are three key features which follow as a result of cloud computing being "internet-based computing". This should not be called out specifically as features of cloud computing.

The "Maintenance" feature talks about "(applications) don't have to be installed on each users computer". This is a characteristic of any server-side, Internet-based computing technology. Does not deserve to be specially called out here. Should be removed.

The "API accessibility to software" feature is attributable to SOA and not cloud. Also, if the cloud is at the infrastructure level, there is no software on it beyond the OS and the virtualization software. Also, saying "typically use REST based APIs" is plain wrong.

"Device and Location independence" is also a characteristic of all internet-based computing. Should not be called out here. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Kishorekumar 62 (talkcontribs) 06:02, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

service-oriented architecture

There is a redlink called service oriented computing. Is this the same thing? Anna Frodesiak (talk) 14:31, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

The first paragraph... stunningly opaque! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:06, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

...and remains stunningly opaque!842U (talk) 14:25, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
You don't want to open that can of worms again, trust me, The first sentence has been fought over hard and is "opaque" for very good reasons, see [33] Mahjongg (talk) 22:57, 7 August 2010 (UTC)
+1 -- samj inout 12:52, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
Well, this Cloud computing article is surprisingly vague at describing what it really is, I read it up and down several times and I was still as baffeled as when I started...
Until, I found this link: and it all fell into place, so perhaps something from that one should be used so other users will not view over this article as totally incomprehensible? (talk) 16:51, 14 September 2010 (UTC)

You mean the paragraph:

Cloud computing means that instead of all the computer hardware and software you're using sitting on your desktop, or somewhere inside your company's network, it's provided for you as a service by another company and accessed over the Internet, usually in a completely seamless way. Exactly where the hardware and software is located and how it all works doesn't matter to you, the user—it's just somewhere up in the nebulous "cloud" that the Internet represents.

I agree this is "better readable", but its hardly encyclopedic. The current sentence tries to "save the goat and the cabbage" by not adhering to any specific version of the definition of what the cloud means, this makes it inherently "opaque".Mahjongg (talk) 14:16, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

And how about this little gem: "The importance of cloud computing cannot be emphasized enough." Hardly encylopedia-worthy. Delete? Zengakuren (talk) 19:21, 16 September 2010 (UTC) Sounds totally non NPOV to me... Should be removed. Mahjongg (talk) 14:16, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

"Stunningly opaque" is good. The explainthatstuff-URL (IMO) provided some of the same vagueness as this article presented. The semantics of cloud-computing and virtualization should provide a more (IMO) strict meaning structure. IOW: "Infrastructure : Internet: Virtualization..." :: "Service : WWW/W3 : Cloud-Computing..." using the old OSI 7 Layer Model (as example) the lower layers act upon literal (IP) route/path requirements, and the upper layers provide content structure (TCP) control between origin and destination. Another way to say this is Cloud computing has services (applications, content, recovery...) available, while virtualization has physical infrastructure (OpSys, server-hardware, connectivity...) as a prescribed or on-demand shared physical resource. Also, JMPO, I could always be wrong [oh21, Open-Comments]. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:17, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

Looks like this article has seen a lot of content disputes, which is probably to be expected with a term that has been applied so broadly as to achieve "buzzword" status. In such cases, pinning down a precise meaning to everyone's satisfaction can be difficult, since meaning can vary with usage, both of which can be expected to change over time. For that reason, I think it might make sense to address the term's potential for imprecision early on in the article. For example, The "History" and "Criticisms of the term" sections could be merged into "Origins and usage of the term" and perhaps integrated into the overview. As for the opening paragraph, what about starting it by saying something like "Cloud computing is a conceptual framework..." rather than "Cloud computing is Internet based computing..."? -Eloil (talk) 16:48, 26 November 2010 (UTC)

I agree the lead pretty much sucks. The term "resources" is way too vague for this lead. "Information" is incorrect - should be "data." (Information has a technical meaning which is not what we're talking about here.) Finally the passive voice, "are provided" avoids saying where the resources are being managed and accessed. Here's my proposal:

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources such as CPU time, data storage, software applications and data are accessed on Internet-based servers by computers and other devices on demand.

The process to get what we have now shouldn't matter. The result of that process, however difficult it was, is just bad. Our purpose is creating a good article not avoiding conflict. Jojalozzo 13:48, 14 December 2010 (UTC)

2 years ago we worked hard to improve it. It's not that bad. Remember how it was before?

Cloud computing is Internet- ("cloud-") based development and use of computer technology ("computing").[1] In concept, it is a paradigm shift whereby details are abstracted from the users who no longer need knowledge of, expertise in, or control over the technology infrastructure "in the cloud" that supports them.[2] It typically involves the provision of dynamically scalable and often virtualized resources as a service over the Internet.[3][4]

Yep. It sounds like something Alan Greenspan would say if he were a computer guy.

If you want it less opaque, everyone will dive in and fight over it. My suggestion is, if you must alter it, tweak it gently. A major rewrite is a can of worms waiting to open. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 14:53, 14 December 2010 (UTC)

If avoiding conflict means settling for bad writing, then that's a poor compromise. What we have may be better than what we started with but it still sucks pretty much. Jojalozzo 14:59, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Okay. Be my guest. I suggest hashing something out here on talk. We await your input. Best, Anna Frodesiak (talk) 15:28, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Maybe it was my formatting but you appear to have skipped over my proposal above. I took your advice and just tweaked the language to remove the passive voice and clarify the actor - didn't try to address other problems at this time. Jojalozzo 22:14, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Sorry. You're right. I missed your proposal. I like it. I'm curious what others think. As for the passive removal, I can't imagine objections. So far, so good. Editing the lead is a bit like playing Jenga, but instead of collapse, everyone goes nuts and starts arguing. :) Anna Frodesiak (talk) 01:59, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

The introduction remains opaque. The first sentence is good, but devolves into the "like the electricity grid" statement that is perfectly meaningless. The remainder of introduction is not written to serve the reader, but rather some esoteric agenda. Either way, good work everyone, but the problem remains. 842U (talk) 19:27, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

The concept of cloud is a good imagination of work in this complex world with a simple and basic concept ie., share resources effectively..(Bobby..working on Cloud computing project in a major IT firm —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:25, 8 January 2011 (UTC)

main cloud computing image

This image is incredibly vague - . Does anyone have an image to represent cloud computing that has more information content? The current image is almost meaningless other than to say that websites are in something called "the cloud" and there is some undefined topology connecting them. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:37, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

As the author of the image I agree completely... unfortunately it's hard to get much more precise without running into consensus issues. -- samj inout 12:51, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
What if the diagram focused on key concepts (or something else) rather than companies considered influential in the field at the time of its creation? As it stands, the significance of the individual connecting lines is not especially clear to me as a "lay" reader. Do they reflect (transient?) associations between the companies or are some connecting lines just placed arbitrarily? -Eloil (talk) 14:28, 26 November 2010 (UTC)
Yes, I've never understood the significance of the lines between Microsoft, Rackspace, Salesforce, Google etc. either. Letdorf (talk) 12:31, 30 November 2010 (UTC).
How about we remove all vendors, and just list some of the services that CC infrastructures have -whether they are made directly visible to clients or not. That is, "storage", "structured storage" (DBMS or an alternative), "computation", "messaging", "analysis", "authentication and billing". In a P2P back end (like skype) auth and billing is centralised, storage and messaging shared by the many clients. In AWS, everything is available on a PAYG basis and you rent VMs by the hour, while in Google App engine, your compute is in reaction to incoming HTTP(S) requests. This would stop the pressure to argue about which companies are in/not-in the picture, and focus more on what it can do, not who thinks they can do it. client side: PCs, phones, tablets, games consoles, to emphasise the broadness of connectivity. If we do the image in some open tool (Dia is installed on this box), then it will be easier to edit and enhance. The danger here is doing original research/imposing our own viewpoints on what's in or out. SteveLoughran (talk) 10:47, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
Good idea. There is no encyclopedic value in listing vendors. Johnuniq (talk) 06:30, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. Sebastian Garth (talk) 15:01, 31 December 2010 (UTC)

Compare cloud and grid computing

I have removed the following text (added here):

See <ref>Ian Foster, Yong Zhao, Ioan Raicu, and Shiyong Lu, "Cloud Computing and Grid Computing 360-Degree Compared", IEEE Grid Computing Environments, pp.1-10, in conjunction with IEEE/ACM Supercomputing, Austin, Texas, 2008.</ref> for an excellent comparison between Cloud computing and Grid computing.

Articles should not direct readers to another site for information. If wanted, we should add some useful text, using the reference as a source. I don't have time to do that at the moment, so am leaving the text here in the hope that someone will read the ref and see if any information is due here. Johnuniq (talk) 03:16, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Merge This With Cloud Computing

This article is too general to stand alone. It misrepresents generic definitions of words as information. If we no nothing about cloud computing security, then we should not have an article about it. This article clearly demonstrates we know nothing about it. At least we should merge it. John (talk) 03:42, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

You wanna merge cloud computing with cloud computing? Either this is a simple error or something that is way too profound for me! —Tom Morris 16:29, 8 January 2011 (UTC)

Kudos to all who put in so much energy on this piece ....

... marshalling a broad concept like this into a single article is quite an accomplishment.

The extended reference section speaks to the level of care people have brought to this piece.

Some of the confusion it engenders stems from the the wikipedia-ana festooning the article. When readers have to scroll a complete page to get to any substance and then jump over multiple :WP-boxen to get to the bottom it's a sign there are structural problems.

IMHO the second paragraph should be moved up to lead. It's a much clearer introduction of the content. Once that's done, what needs to be done with the current first paragraph will be much clearer.

The paragraph discussing the origin of the term (cloud used to describe phone network) suffers from the same issue. The lead sentence should actually be last.

I don't have time to do this justice at the moment but plan to return.

It is an important piece and deserves proper crafting.

Netscr1be (talk) 13:22, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

Lists of vendors

The lists of vendors in the lead are of marginal value and encourage links for commercial promotion rather than reader enlightenment. They will only get longer, less useful, and more promotional as time goes on. I propose we drop them now. Jojalozzo 20:17, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

Yes please! Every day we get another look at me name added, with no encyclopedic value. Johnuniq (talk) 05:59, 13 January 2011 (UTC)
+1. We can link to various vendors product lines' wiki pages, once they have achieved notability, but otherwise it's just a place to put all enterprise and cloud-related startups in. SteveLoughran (talk) 15:13, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

I propose we move them to a new article List of cloud computing vendors. It won't solve the promotional problem but will remove it from this article. Jojalozzo 16:15, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

No! Per WP:NOTDIR, Wikipedia does not provide a directory of company names for anything that regards itself as related to "cloud computing". If there were reliable secondary sources which show that there is general interest in the topic of such a list, the article could be considered. However, it is simply not Wikipedia's role to connect the public with vendors (or to promote vendors, which is what has happened on this article). Wikipedia provides categories for topics of sufficient importance: put a suitable category in the article for each relevant company. Johnuniq (talk) 22:36, 13 January 2011 (UTC)
OK. We need to be ruthless about the Cloud computing template (I revoke something there once a week, but am getting tired of it, Cloud Storage, etc. Every startup uses a wikipedia entry as their gateway to fame, and I can't be bothered to revert their work. Some else can do it. SteveLoughran (talk) 20:11, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

Data center for clouds versus clients cpus regarding electrical efficiency

Hi there, very nice article so far, i´d just like to contribute or suggest that someone should take a look and write about the aspects regarding "energy efficiency" and many important advantadges to electrical efficiency that the cloud computing model could contribute to, imho; I really suppose that in a pool of 50 dedicated cloud servers, only 10 of them could be switched on at a given time according to an average load, wrong ? also, the potential for less processing on the client side VS more processing on the cloud side seems to me to be very promissing, given enough interconnection... Henrique at —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:49, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

no, the big datacentres like to run them busy, power is only part of the cost of a datacentre, the others being capital costs of the computers and the hardware. If you can keep the machines doing useful work more of the time, then each CPU-hour costs less. What you try to do is have low priority work, lower cost CPU time, machines which can be killed with little or no warning, so that you can keep the spare machines busy, and if someone with more money comes along, those jobs get killed. See [34] and [35] . IF someone was to look at power, James Hamilton's work contains the papers and presentations to consider. That said, in an "enterprise" installation, you can take a number of under-used servers, stick each app up on a virtual machine, and then share some higher end CPUs, so you do save power, and if the VM manager can move running virtual machines around, it can even power down idle machines. SteveLoughran (talk) 20:09, 19 January 2011 (UTC)
ok SteveLoughran tks so much. Im gonna do my homework so that i can understand what i missed in here. I really appreciate your comments and references! keep it up ! cheers from brazil ! henrique at .br —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:45, 22 January 2011 (UTC)

Economic models for cloud computing

There seems to be a lot of content related to a Service Provider or Public Cloud delivery model (i.e. wording to the effect of "a customer who buys cloud doesn't need to purchase servers, etc."). I would suggest that these are simply economic models for cloud computing and irrelevant to cloud computing itself. Perhaps we should create or link to stubs for Private Cloud, Public Cloud, Hybrid Cloud? I propose that we remove any references to a specific economic model and keep the main article pure and perhaps branch off as necessary. M@ (talk) 05:30, 11 February 2011 (UTC)

Now that I've read through it again I am of the opinion that a lot of the content is economic delivery model specific and would better be handled under the different cloud deployment models (public, private, hybrid)M@ (talk) 05:53, 11 February 2011 (UTC)


A history section without a mention of the role of virtualization in cloud computing is likely lacking. Should we mention VMware here similar to the importance of IBM, AWS and Google?M@ (talk) 05:39, 11 February 2011 (UTC)


All I know about cloud is from a vague television ad where some annoying Americans basically say they like it. Big deal!

So, I look at the Wikipedia article only to find the opening sentence: Cloud computing describes computation, software, data access, and storage services that do not require end-user knowledge of the physical location and configuration of the system that delivers the services.

My first thought? What is the difference between cloud computing and the internet where, in the latter case, the "end-user" does not know where the servers are located. Also, why is this significant? Why does it matter whether or not the person reading a newspaper know which particular tree the paper came from.

It's possible that these questions may be answered in later paragraphs but, unfortunately, they were so thick with jargon as to be unreadable. One doesn't have to be an IT expert to know how to look up something in Wikipedia and, conversely, not everyone who looks up something in Wikipedia is an IT expert. So why assume we are? (talk) 03:28, 3 March 2011 (UTC)

too technical

the "cloud computing" article is too technical for a common man to understand. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:04, 4 March 2011 (UTC)


Can I assume that the phrase "Monkey: means the word monkey is on here, it implies the monkey protocol with the banana derivative" is someone's idea of a joke? Rbd2 (talk) 16:20, 15 March 2011 (UTC)

Working on the lead again

A new lead has been proposed today with the old one moved to introduce the technical section. I think the old intro works very well in the technical section but the new lead has at least one significant error that is likely to mislead lay readers and be a point of instability among knowledgeable editors.

"Cloud Computing is the popular name for the abstraction of internet services or websites. When a user searches for something on Google or catches up with friends on Facebook, they use a single website to gain access to the service and have no need to understand what is happening behind the scenes. A complex system has been presented in a simple way that is easy to use and understand. The supply of electricity, gas, telephone services, television services, postal service are presented in a simple way so users don't need to know about transmission systems or transport systems to use the service supplied. The technical term to describe this simplification is called abstraction. The abstracted internet service itself and sometimes the whole internet is called The Cloud."

The cloud is not websites, it is computing resources in the background. Websites are applications that may (or may not) run in the cloud.

"When a user searches for something on Google or catches up with friends on Facebook, they use a single website to gain access to the service and have no need to understand what is happening behind the scenes."

Websites and end users of them are simply another version of the electric grid analogy. The important feature of cloud computing is that the cloud application developer doesn't know or care what or where the computing resources are. I propose the lead make it clear that it is application developers that are viewing the Internet as a cloud not end users and avoid the website analogy all together. Jojalozzo 18:51, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

Internet services is a confusing term because many users consider this to be what they purchase from their telco. All of the cloud services I have come across though deliver their services through some kind of website - including webmail which used to have its own service (eg pop3, imap, etc) Therefore I used the phrase "internet services or websites" Its not ideal and i am not happy with it but I couldn't find a better alternative. I am hoping someone else can :)

The cloud has several layers of abstraction and from what Microsoft, vmware, and others describe there are several layers between the browsers and the hardware. At some point we will probably have something similar to the 7 layer network model. We aren't there yet because this area is too new and things are developing too rapidly to settle at the moment. Here are the layers as I see them used today with the layers of abstraction - it's not fully accurate and is not the full picture but it gives an idea of what is going on.

  • Browser layer (what the user sees, ie pixels on the screen)
  • user layer, presentation layer, front end (html, javascript, ajax, flash, etc)
  • application layer, delivery layer, back end (php, executables, apache, iis, mysql, squid, etc)
  • service layer (dynamic clusters of webservers, application servers, file servers, database servers, etc)
  • server layer (virtual servers with an OS)
  • hyperserver layer (eg esx)
  • physical layer (physical servers)

All websites run code in the background and at different levels and layers. php is code and so is apache and so is the OS required to run them both. Most developers do not know or care where that code is run. The microsoft dot net features run on both the client's computer and also the servers or webservers delivering the website or application to the end user. Some developers might use a dedicated server but this is now highly unlikely. Even a small scale website hosting package purchased for a few pounds could find its services distributed across multiple physical servers thanks to the virtual clusters used by the hosting company to deliver exchange, apache, mysql, etc Scottonsocks (talk) 20:07, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

As I said above, it's not about websites! It's about computing services of all kinds. You can use cloud services to compute pi and save it in a file without any web presence at all. A web site is not requirment for delivering cloud services. Focusing on web sites is an extremely narrow perspective. The introduction must be more inclusive.
And why is Facebook suddenly mentioned half a dozen times in the lead?? Is there a COI issue? Jojalozzo 01:11, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

I mentioned facebook and google because, most of the general public have no idea about the geek speak that is used in most of this article and these two sites are easy for them to relate to because most of the public use them both. The numerous comments above from many people detail clearly how almost nobody understands anything written here and I was trying to address that with real world examples non geeks would readily understand. Most people in the general population use clouds in relation to websites. If you want a non website cloud service then go for email and the two most popular examples would be exchange and blackberry. But as I have already mentioned exchange has webmail.

What is important about the cloud is the internet. Without the internet there is no cloud. Scottonsocks (talk) 04:47, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

I agree with what you say about the importance of the Internet but you appear to be confusing the Internet (a general wide area network of highly diverse computing systems) with the Web (services offered by the multitude of web sites). I recommend you have a look at a summary article about cloud computing like the following at Infoworld: What cloud computing really means. You will see that web sites are a tiny part of this.
I encourage you to stick with this project because you bring a non-geeky perspective but you must still be technically accurate. Please broaden your understanding of cloud computing beyond what popular web sites offer or email or anything that the general population experiences and then work that into the article, especially the "How it works" section. Otherwise your contributions will be a distortion of a topic that does not much involve the general population. Jojalozzo 05:12, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

What I am missing in the explanation of what "cloud computing" means (for a lay-person) is that its not the CPU in your PC that does the hard work, but the computers that power the servers that are "in the cloud". This means that "Computer performance" isn't dependent anymore on your own PC, but is in principle unlimited. Even when your own actual hardware is very simple (and cheap). So in principle every cloud user would be able to tap into unlimited computational power, and could do things that are impossible to do on current PC's. Mahjongg (talk) 11:38, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

Link under Review?

Within the Wikipedia article, there is note for citation needed under layers/application:

"People tend to use the terms "SaaS" and "cloud" interchangeably, when in fact they are two different things.[citation needed]"

Here is the citation I added:

Text from the article:

"SaaS is so easily confused with cloud computing in that SaaS can be considered a subset of cloud computing. But cloud computing also enables such concepts as platform as a service (PaaS) and infrastructure as a service (IaaS), making cloud computing a more broadly useful area for harried IT departments to consider for relief."

Any reason that doesn't fit? (Casieg (talk) 14:39, 24 March 2011 (UTC))

When editors repeatedly add links to the same site, we call that "spamming," which we don't permit. Such patterns often suggest WP:COI issues as well. OhNoitsJamie Talk 14:51, 24 March 2011 (UTC)
I get it and that definitely makes sense but in this case it does fit doesn't it? I'm really surprised to get flagged for adding two links. Any additional thoughts/comments are appreciated. (Casieg (talk) 15:06, 24 March 2011 (UTC))
The statement that SaaS, PaaS and IaaS may all be offered from the Cloud is generally accepted, but the particular source doesn't express it well. Anyway the source is an anonymous reposting of something apparently written by IT staffing firm, so it isn't a reliable source. If the statement came from recognized industry analysts (e.g. Gartner, Forrester, Ovum, Butler) that would be a different matter. Hope this helps. - Pointillist (talk) 17:38, 24 March 2011 (UTC)
Thanks Pointillist. That is very helpful actually. Appreciate the response! (Casieg (talk) 20:23, 29 March 2011 (UTC))
You're going to hate me, I know, but I've just reverted your citation of because it is a blog by a vendor representative (Bob Moul) hosted by a vendor (Boomi). Blogs are almost always rejected as sources because they have no editorial oversight to ensure they are accurate and no need to be unbiased. There are exceptions–a blog by Martin Fowler of ThoughtWorks might be acceptable because of his recognized industry status–but afaics neither Bob Moul nor Boomi has become sufficiently notable to get an article here in Wikipedia. So even though it looks like a great site (I'll certainly read around it for ideas) it isn't a reliable source either. All the best - Pointillist (talk) 21:47, 29 March 2011 (UTC)
Ha! I understand the blog part but he is the GM of Dell and Boomi was his company that was bought by Dell. That's pretty notable I'd say. (Casieg (talk) 14:08, 30 March 2011 (UTC))
Absolutely. So why not create an article on Boomi? There seems to be plenty of source material if you google garnter boomi, boomi, boomi, boomi, boomi etc. Good luck! - Pointillist (talk) 14:51, 30 March 2011 (UTC)
Pointillist, you're the nicest person on wikipedia ;) Thanks! (Casieg (talk) 16:16, 30 March 2011 (UTC))
*blush* I hope this hasn't spoilt the thrill of starting the new article, but I've created an editing sandbox at User:Casieg/Boomi if you would like to do the initial development outside the main article space. This allows you to draft the article at your own pace without having people like me critique your work and rubbish your references. If you would like help along the way, let me know. - Pointillist (talk) 21:22, 30 March 2011 (UTC)
How's this for a definition: Cloud is a style of computing in which end users access data, applications or raw compute capacity via a Web browser. Cloud computing is a service, rather than a product. nealw, 4/5/11Nealw1590 (talk) 20:57, 5 April 2011 (UTC)
Unfortunately that doesn't distinguish cloud from an n-tier application with a web front end reached via the Internet (e.g. employee on a business trip enters expenses into employer's ERP system in Seattle via the web). - Pointillist (talk) 22:57, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

AFAICS the essence of cloud is a black box whereby the people responsible for an application don't have to plan or manage the hardware and network topography, because everything to do with scalability, network throughput, resilience, content caching etc., are handled by the cloud services provider. If I can find reliable analyst sources for this, that's the way I'd prefer to start the article. Then we can go on to explain how cloud offerings in the real world are compromises of this original "pure" model...

  • Limiting the geographical location for storage and processing (e.g. to address concerns over cross-border movement of personal data)
  • Manually configuring the content delivery network rather than caching everything everywhere
  • Preselecting the amount of processing power available rather than automatically responding to changing loads
  • Discounts based on committed consumption (e.g. contracting for xxx units of CPU/Database resource whether you use them or not)
  • Temporarily reallocating processing power (e.g. to ensure capacity for year-end reporting or for one-off sales promotions)
  • Joining on-premises systems to the cloud as "hybrid" services

...and so on. This approach will make it easier to categorize the various services on offer. Gartner and co have probably already done something like this—I'll try to get details. - Pointillist (talk) 22:57, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

No Such Thing

The answer to this problem is that there is no significance to the term "the cloud". It is a silly term that has been given some artificial legitimacy by marketing people.

In a virtual world view, it is a simple nick name for the network of computer servers which make up the Internet. (Remember that virtual often means artificial.) If one was able to see, in one view, all of the computers all linked together on the great web of the network that makes up the Internet, and each computer connection point was a little white light, one would see a hazy mass of lights. All together they would look something like a cloud, in much the same way that our Milky Way looks like a cloud.

Microsoft is further "clouding" the issue (pardon the pun) with their silly ads about their home users turning to "the cloud" for a solution on editing pictures. The work is still being done by the software on the user's own computer. The rest is bull.

The nearest thing we have to "cloud computing" is the SETI screen-saver app for using unused cpu cycles on many computers to spread the work load. Otherwise, cloud computing is as legit as clown computing. - --KitchM (talk) 03:58, 28 March 2011 (UTC)

This article is not about the hype. SaaS, IaaS, etc are real cloud services. The Internet and the cloud are not the same thing. Jojalozzo 11:46, 28 March 2011 (UTC)

SETI, mersenne, cancer beating molecules, global warming stuff are distributed computing projects and are not cloud. SETI though is apt cos all the marketeers say the cloud is out there somewhere just like ET lol If you check out the diagram though it gives an idea of what is going on. A company could purchase servers from amazon, and then run software on it that is rented (anything from MS, norton, whoever,) they could use salesforce to manage the payroll, and the entire lot could in theory be run by a single person from their spare bedroom.

SAAS is not the same as cloud computing. But SAAS is a cloud service. SAAS = antivirus. You rent it because every year it expires. You pay money cos you receive new updates regularly. But, its not piece of cloud software, it is software rental. Parts of the AV software may be cloudy though.

Cloud is a popular term and everybody wants a piece of the action. It's fashionable and therefore anything that loosely fits the definition gets called cloud. The cloud has become a marketing term for a very very broad range of activities now.

For true cloud computing virtualisation is a key ingredient. Because without it the servers are not hardware independent. With virtualisation the hardware is abstracted away and you have virtual storage and virtual processors and virtual network connections. So, if you have some website application (or infrastructure or multi-cluster config thingy ma jiggy bobby), or a number crunching app or virtual desktops they can all be moved. Because perhaps amazon have increased their prices and you wanna move to rackspace instead. Or 1and1 or a new google service etc.Scottonsocks (talk) 04:15, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

simplify cloud computing introduction

Cloud computing is a more sophisticated throwback to time shared computing in the 1970's. Machines like Digital Equipment PDP-10 were accessed over phone lines, the end user on a "dumb" terminal. The software application and data were stored on the time shared computer. "Cloud Computing" expands on this by allowing the user to access a wide range of applications over the internet using a browser. The application and data may reside anywhere.

This is where one complication arises. Simplified "cloud" systems such as gmail exist. You don't know or care where the software or data are located. Other suppliers have their own "clouds". So it is more a collection of small clouds, rather than just one.

Cloud computing also raises issues such as; security and integrity of data transferred and stored, protection of proprietary information, and in the event of problems who do you contact. These are major issues for corporations and one of the reasons why cloud computing has been slow to be adopted. Mainlymaine (talk) 21:25, 18 April 2011 (UTC)

The intro doesn't just need to be simplified, it needs to be corrected. It is misleading that many writers here think that every web site is in "the cloud". Some may be in a cloud, but most are on a server or in a web farm, and these are technically different. Gmail may or may not be in the cloud. It is not in the cloud because it is accessed via a browser. A browser is not required to access the cloud. "The cloud" is a useful term and is not just marketing spin. GaryGo (talk) 02:27, 20 April 2011 (UTC)

Amazon outage April 2011

My edit about recent Amazon cloud computing outage was rv by one editor on the basis that: "tales of a service provider's recent technical problems add nothing to this article". Really? A quick search using Google news results in titles like: "Amazon's three-day woes raise questions over cloud computing‎", "Learning from Amazon's cloud collapse", "Amazon's cloud nightmare", "Why Amazon's cloud Titanic went down", "Amazon EC2 Users Say 'The sky is falling!'‎" and "Amazon failure raises concerns about cloud computing‎". Shouldn't an article about light water nuclear reactor also include a brief mention of the Fukushimi incident? ---North wiki (talk) 16:32, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

We are talking about this edit which both Sebastiangarth and myself removed. The added text was:
Recent development
It is reported, started from April 21, 2011, web computing service provided by Amazon to its cloud customers was disrupted by technical problems. The problems experienced include unable to access data, service interruptions and sites being shut down. The current problems are reported to come from a big data center of Amazon in Northern Virginia, near Dulles airport. Some customers like Netflix, which employs redundant cloud architecture, said its internet services to customers is not affected. Some like BigDoor was knocked out of service. The Amazon interruption,described by an industry insider as 'the computing equivalent of an airplane crash' with widespread damage.[ref name=NYT110423/]
The main problem is the violation of WP:NOTNEWS, but the wording also needs significant improvement for grammar and clarity. As I noted in my edit summary, when a secondary source makes a comment, we can incorporate its view on reliability issues. It is very likely that the Amazon incident will be analyzed in suitable sources, and I agree that when that happens the article should have some encyclopedic content with a more precise statement of the problem, and its effects. I read that some organization had paid more for their service to be hosted in Amazon's west and east coast data centers, and they had no downtime. Details like that will be written up in an analysis in due course. Johnuniq (talk) 23:41, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
There are various secondary sources giving analysis of the incident. It's just whether one would be open enough to look into this matter. (P.S. Including a few I mentioned above.) As for the other point you mentioned, what I read is it's not as simple as to pay more for their service to be hosted in Amazon's west and east coast data centers - it is not as straight forward as you described, according to an article: " as Santa Barbara points out, most startups don't have the time or resources to engineer for multiple cloud systems (each Amazon global region/data center has its own rules and features, making a simple "switch" to another center difficult).".[36] According to another article: "If you straddle regions, you have to send traffic across the public internet. According to one user, this is "comparatively expensive, slow and unreliable". "So if you're playing the AWS game and setting up a master/slave MySQL database (to take a highly pertinent example), what you do is you put the master and the slave in the same Region, but make sure they're in different Availability Zones," [...]"You don't normally put them in separate Regions, otherwise you have to cross the expensive, slow and unreliable links between Regions, and you'll likely have more problems trying to keep your databases in sync. " [37] ---North wiki (talk) 05:48, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

In the proper context, naming specific incidences can be appropriate, but in the general case it really isn't necessary to elaborate to such a degree. The article already mentions concerns about availability and performance, and for the purposes of this article that is sufficient. If a "list of most prominent server failures" article was ever created (God forbid), then that would be the place to post such trivia, but here it would only amount to unnecessary clutter. Sebastian Garth (talk) 02:45, 26 April 2011 (UTC)
Agreed. There is some encyclopedic content that might be written about the recent Amazon incident, but I have not seen a suitable source, and we have not seen suitable wording proposed for this article. Re the comments above by North wiki: yes, surviving the failure required a lot more than paying a bit of money; it required prior planning with properly paid and clueful network admins who did the work and had the ability to sync their databases (I do not know the details, but it was tricky). Johnuniq (talk) 07:33, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

This is awful

This article should should have a plain English intro that explains to the layman what cloud computing is. The intro paragraph should be about 4 sentences long, lay out the barebones, and then the technobabble could ensue in subsequent paragraphs. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:30, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

I believe the current two sentence lead paragraph attempts to accomplish what you are asking for but apparently fails to do so. Are you saying that we have not simplified it sufficiently there or are you seeking more information than we have provided there and are finding the detail that ensues in subsequent paragraphs of the introduction to be too technical? Jojalozzo 22:37, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

It's still not simplified sufficiently. It's a bit better than the last time I looked at it, but it still doesn't answer the essential question - "What does it do?" in plain language. I still don't know what cloud computing is, and I have a Master's degree and consider myself moderately computer literate. Not that that means the world, but I just offer it as evidence that you're not getting through to the target audience. If I understand cloud computing, basically from the osmosis-like bleeding through from television commercials, it lets you use computer programs off of the internet rather than having them locally installed on your computer. If that's the case, just write that. If that's not what it is, you're probably starting to see where the confusion is coming in. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:46, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

I put in the beginnings of an explanation in the "How it works" section that has tested pretty well with a few totally non-techie people but some clown is calling it a "personal essay". I suppose they'd rather the article read like a virgin's wet dream than something normal people can actually read. At any rate when I have time I'll add to the "How it works" section this weekend. Qoncept —Preceding undated comment added 03:19, 16 April 2011 (UTC).

All this chatter reminds me of the parable of the blind men concurrently describing an elephant. The four men in proximity to the legs, describe it as being "like unto a tree". The one in proximity to the trunk, described it as being "like unto a snake". And the one positioned at it's rear described it as an "unpleasant avalanche".

And... they're all correct, because it's all about perspective.

However, under "common opinion", it MUST be a "tree", which means that it isn't even an animal.

A salesman for a company with "cloud presence" will call it a "product", a tech-support trooper will describe it as a "nightmare", and an end-user will describe it as "useful" (when it all works), and "useless" (when it doesn't).

So... feel free to describe the "elephant" in 4 sentences, without using "perspective", or technical "gibberish", such that a "layman" (specifically, one who has never seen an elephant) will "understand" it.

This whole "exercise" is especially challenging since the "actual implementation" of this particular elephant is "currently under development". —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:12, 21 April 2011 (UTC)

The new How It Works section blows. Has anyone actually tested this out on non-techies? NOBODY understands WTF it is. The "narrative" feel of the explanation I provided is what actually makes it comprehensible. But please, prove me wrong. Show me your user testing results demonstrating that the average person has even a flimsy grasp of cloud computing after reading this section. - Qoncept 6:07 21/4/2011 PDT

How about this revised How It Works section. (talk) 16:58, 29 April 2011 (UTC)

Definition... again

Still seems a specific definition is needed. I doubt Amazon's two-way connection to a remote server counts as a "cloud." Just marketing BS. Just like "virtual reality" where you put on goggles and move a joystick. ACTUAL virtual reality means that the images and sound change based on your NATURAL head and body movements. Not some stupid joystick. Just because Amazon's marketing dweebs call it "cloud," doesn't mean it is. Tragic romance (talk) 17:43, 3 May 2011 (UTC)

Definition in lead section

Hi there. I seem to remember that absolutely years ago there was a concept called "client-server", which, as I recall, involved "the provision of computational resources on demand via a computer network", which is exactly how "cloud computing" is defined in the opening sentence. So is "cloud computing" just a piece of rebranding BS made up by marketing people to try to sell more product?

But then again, perhaps answering my question, it later says:

"LANs were widely deployed in corporate environments in the 1990's, and are notable for vendor specific connectivity limitations. These limitations gave rise to the marketing term 'Islands of Information' which was widely used within the computing industry. The widespread implementation of the TCP/IP protocol stack and the subsequent popularization of the web has lead to multi-vendor networks that are no longer limited by company walls."

So, perhaps TCP/IP and/or lack of vendor-specificity connectivity limitations and/or the Internet are also essential if something is to be called "cloud computing"? If so, I think this information should be worked into the opening sentence. (talk) 20:06, 11 May 2011 (UTC)


OK i did some simplifying. hope it helps. the original author was very long-winded and tended to repeat himself, so i removed some info from the intro that was mentioned later in the article. its not perfect but i hope it helps! cheers! Songjin (talk) 04:07, 13 May 2011 (UTC)

I came, I saw, I'm still confused

Just a simple user here. I came to the "Cloud computing" Wiki entry to learn a bit about it, and left with nothing. The intro mentions that the article includes "too many Buzzwords", and I have to agree.

How about adding one or two sentences at the top, in plain English, explaining how it was before Cloud, and what Cloud offers in way of improvement, and a simple, basic example?

In short: First, tell me what time it is, and then explain how the clock works. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:01, 9 January 2011 (UTC)

There has got to be a simpler way to describe the workings of cloud computing. The peeps at HowStuffWorks have a much simpler and concise explanation. With cloud computing gaining popularity, this section needs to be edited quickly. Stacchy (talk) 08:09, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

I agree: this is one of the worst Wikipedia articles I've seen. The standard of writing is abysmal. There is verbose drivel like "It is a byproduct and consequence" (why not just "result"?) There is pretentious nonsense like "Since 2007, the number of...has increased at an almost exponential rate". What does "almost exponential" mean? If something increases at 0.1% per year, that's exponential. Has the increase been less than that? What are the real figures? We don't know: we have just a non-mathematician pretending to speak in mathematical terms. Such colloquial nonsense has no place here. Where is the care in exposition (like saying when the claimed period of "almost exponential" growth ended)? If I see the article again in five years, can I assume that the statement is still true or must I search the article history to see when someone wrote "Since 2007...".

The article admits that there is disagreement as to the meaning of "cloud computing". Given this, it is fatuous to try to describe it in detail.

Your summary First, tell me what time it is, and then explain how the clock works is a good description of the underlying problem. Mike Shepherd (talk) 12:29, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

I agree with the other comments. The introductory paragraph must be clear and simple enough to identify the concept to a layman without the use of jargon or specialized computer language. It is impossible to actually understood what this term means given this rather unhelpful introduction. It should be possible to say "Cloud computing is "this", without the reader having to go through the whole article. In the meantime, the article should be deleted. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:03, 10 March 2011 (UTC)

. I agree. This article is dreadful, a blemish on Wiki, and should be deleted until something better can be constructed.

A half decent definition, would be a start, such as the one given here at "Cloud computing is a general term for anything that involves delivering hosted services over the Internet. These services are broadly divided into three categories: Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). The name cloud computing was inspired by the cloud symbol that's often used to represent the Internet in flowcharts and diagrams." The definition given in this wiki article simply defines a network, not clioyud computing. The use of the word "computational" is both redundant and inaccurate which is some accomplishment. The analogy in the first paragraph is not only inaccurate but its tone seems to me entirely out of keeping with an encyclopaedia and more in keeping with late night chat over a pint. It is also totally inaccurate. The cloud does not deliver a commodity, such as gas or electricity, but a service. LookingGlass (talk) 10:57, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

This article sounds too much like the marketing program of some companies. Its not useful to layman at all. The introduction should be brief, concise and give all answers so that the reader can understand what he is plodding into Wikishagnik (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 12:55, 22 May 2011 (UTC).

Is this an article or an advertisement

The sentence "This reduces the cost to individuals" is opinion and not based on any factual evidence. There is little to no, consumer basis for the monetary cost efficiency of cloud computing. Not to mention costs are set by service providers and subject to change at anytime. Long story short, its not a fact, so it has no place. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:12, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

Example: I don't have microsoft word, instead of purchasing a copy of microsoft office, open source software notwithstanding, I save money by using Google Docs, which just requires a gmail account and is totally free. Also, if you take a look at the concept of cloud gaming, the games are hosted on the servers and resource demanding games can be run on less powerful computers, meaning that i don't have to spend in the excess of a thousand bucks on a computer when i can run my games off my dinky little netbook. Thus, savings. Cheers! Songjin (talk) 02:32, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

I have to agree with the 1st posting in this block. The concept of "Cloud Computing", where "The cloud" is a term for the internet, which, in server system diagrams, is represented by a little cloud (and has been long before this came up in popular media), isn't brand specific. Microsoft is using the term "The Cloud" as if it's a proprietary "thing", and I think that is causing some confusion. The article shouldn't specifically be talking about any one brand being "The Cloud", that includes Google, Microsoft, etc. That said, there is a little propaganda going on here, even if you don't realize it. While at face value Google docs might be cheaper than Microsoft office, there are other cloud computing services that are not free, and there are free & open source desktop applications and operating systems. Open Office, or Linux are prime examples. (and, not to pick on anyone or anything, but you can't exactly just choose to ignore facts when they conflict with your argument.) I paid nothing at all for software on my non-cloud Linux system. Is free cheaper than free? If you consider that to use Google Docs, I need to constantly been connected to the internet, and to use office package that comes with Ubuntu I can be offline, technically Google docs would cost me more. Therefore, cheaper is an oversimplification and a narrow view to tack it onto all of cloud computing in this instance. Just my 2cents Raine (talk) 21:10, 6 June 2011 (UTC)


The entire page is almost purely tautological. What is the cloud? It's computing that happens in the cloud. It almost seems intentional. This entire article reads like marketing from a datacenter provider. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:47, 8 June 2011 (UTC)

You have to understand that cloud computing literally means ignorance. The possibilities are unlimited within the scope of ignorance. Hence you can have tautologies. The definition can be reduced to, "Cloud computing is computing about which the user is ignorant." (talk) 19:16, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

PSN hack made through Amazon EC2

source Twobells (talk)

Ok, I was very brief in my last comment so I would want the author to answer the following questions

1. Where does .Net framework stop and where does this new concept begin? The graphical representation is very much like the old DCOM and .Net frameworks. 2. How is cloud computing different from say the Google search page? After all Google provides its services across platforms and browsers. 3. mobile specific apps (such as games you control by tilting the mobile) will always be different from PC specific apps. Does the cloud address this issue at all or am i missing the point here? 4. Is cloud computing restricted to browser based applications? Does it allow anything more than

 a. Browse for information
 b. Transact or purchase online?
 c. Download content such as music or movies?
 d. Play games or interact virtually over internet?
 e. anything else that we aren't doing already from our PC's or mobiles?

The point I am making with this question is that Facebook for instance changed the game with a networking site, earlier sites were focused more on career and romance networking while Facebook brought the common man and his mom to networking. Does cloud computing change the game? Wikishagnik (talk) 13:18, 22 May 2011 (UTC)

Cloud Computing is a marketing buzzword so why is it presented as anything else?

Look at the NIST definition for cloud computing:

"Cloud computing is a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.[1]"

What this says is that cloud computing means that with little effort you can go ask for some kind of information related service whether that be server data storage or running a full blown operational model. So long as you have no clue about how anything works, as a dumb business bod you can ask the world of consolidated operational excellence for a service. That's cloud computing.

What cloud computing is is consolidated operational governance owned by those who are lucky enough to be in on the game right now. Once you can make an online bank just by writing some software, if you can host it in the cloud, it doesn't matter if your customer base in the tens or in the billions. Get it now? That's why it's potentially very interesting —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:22, 20 May 2011 (UTC)

I like the NIST definition from Special Pub 800-145 (Draft). Is it permissible to pull text from this document with proper reference to it? Magoldbe (talk) 19:13, 20 June 2011 (UTC)

I must agree! This is one of the worst articles I've seen on Wikipedia. It needs to be tore up from the floor up and reconstituted to point out that "cloud" is nothing but simple marketing of many technologies and designs that evolved over prior years/decades. Now, having a simple marketing notion for non-technical folks to grasp is itself a great achievement, to be sure. But don't pretend cloud is about technology. It's about marketing. Somewherepurple (talk) 19:30, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

Note: Wikipedia is not a discussion forum — please take your opinions about the pros and cons of cloud computing elsewhere. -- samj inout 18:14, 5 August 2011 (UTC)

Cloud Computing - Back to the Future!

Cloud Computing is nothing more than re-inventing the mainframe! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:03, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

This statement couldn't be more wrong. Thin-clients are more mainframe like than what is referred to today as cloud computing. The number and type of services that are hosted in 'a cloud' are by far more diverse than a single mainframe could offer. Not to mention the fact that 'clouds' make use of de-centralised centralised services in order to prevent a total system outage. P.S.: Amazon, you need to make a note of my last sentence. :-) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:50, 12 May 2011 (UTC)

No I'm afraid I have to agree with the unsigned up above, it really is a throwback to the 70s. (talk) 01:40, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

I think there is no relevant explanation about what actually the cloud computing means? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:45, 18 May 2011 (UTC)

It isn't just a throwback to the 70's. There are and have been for quite some time, systems set up to do this very thing. Isn't every @home basically a version of cloud computing? (distributed computing) but it uses remote network locations to do the processing. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Bofum (talkcontribs) 20:34, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

It isn't "just a throwback to the 70's", but it is rather similar in concept to mainframe computing. The primary distiction is that 'Cloud' computing is typically offered as a service, while mainframes were intraorganizational systems. I believe some other distinctions may include distribution of processing, the surface area covered by all the computing resources involved, the processing power theoretically available, and the focus of the applications utilizing these resources (more often publicly accessed rather than restricted to employees or organizational members), and even the design of 'Cloud' systems to often be accessible via multiple platforms or technologies.

All of these distinctions, however, could be shown to apply to the computer industry and the Internet as a whole and in a way distinct from 'Cloud' computing. Just like its namesake, the concept of 'Cloud' computing itself is thus very nebulous and poorly-defined. It is really just a named representative of the numerous advancements of the computer industry over the years, intended to denote a conglomeration of resources, and used to sell services (rather than devices). Brettpeirce (talk) 19:26, 27 June 2011 (UTC)

Lets just say it's 'very similar' to timesharing back in the 1970s. I worked for a company that sold timesharing, using IBM and CDC mainframes. Imagine a hosting provider with Telnet access, but no web server. and no Unix yet. You dial the magic phone number, when you hear the beep, slam the phone receiver into the rubber cups on the modem, then hit return on your terminal till it prompts for the username/pw. Hey! we had 300 and 1200 bits/sec, much faster than the original 110. You do statistics, or whatever numbr-crunching thing that your Fortran program did (this is for enginers/scientists). And (non-moving) graphics, on a Tektronix graphics terminal. and sometimes, lower case! Arrow keys: they never, ever did anything. There were 'thin clients', IBM 3270 terminals, which could do a crude version of HTML forms, for business. Our company had business graphics, CAD apps, stat apps, all command-line, which we also charged for (don't ask me how much). Not like I want to go back or anything. OsamaBinLogin (talk) 06:53, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

Note: Wikipedia is not a discussion forum — please take your opinions about the pros and cons of cloud computing elsewhere. -- samj inout 18:15, 5 August 2011 (UTC)

More work required?

OK i was just skimming through the article in general and i get the feeling that the introduction is too long, and the article in general is too long, and hardly being coherent nor well-organised. Does anyone else think that perhaps several sections need to be rearranged? For example, I personally feel that the "how it works" section is better suited as not being there, with the content merged with other sections, like "overview". Several pieces of information are repeated throughout the article, eg: frequent mentions of how cloud computing is in the clouds, basically a constant repeating of its definition and purpose, making for an unnecessary and artificial increase article length, which is hardly a sign of the quality of content. Songjin (talk) 07:42, 18 May 2011 (UTC)

yeah, I know when I edit stuff, I'm afraid to delete other people's content. I see this effect a lot where the same concepts are said over and over again, in lots of articles; not just me. EG in this article, the Richard Stallman quote. Somebody else has to cut this stuff not me, too chicken. OsamaBinLogin (talk) 06:15, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

Introduction Opinion

The last paragraph under the "Introduction" heading has a lot of information in it, but it hasn't been sourced for 10 days. If it isn't sourced/deleted, doesn't that go against WP:NOR? (talk) 19:38, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

Popular/Marketing Definition vs Industry Definition

The term "Cloud Computing" is used by popular media to describe general use of internet/offsite resources in place of local hardware. The industry term "Cloud Computing" refers to a specific type of infrastructure design where the platform itself runs on virtual machines that abstract the physical hardware. These are not the same thing, but this article bounces back and forth between the two uses of this term. Some clarity, cleanup and possibly splitting this into two articles for the two definitions is needed. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:38, 22 June 2011 (UTC)

Well, yeah, I guess it is a hazy concept, like a lot of buzzwords. It's soft and fluffy, so the marketers pick it up and run with it, morphing the meaning into whatever their company is selling. IBM's VM/370 (1970s) actually was like " the platform itself runs on virtual machines that abstract the physical hardware", exactly the same, including running a VM inside a VM. So the concept isn't new, just the buzzword.

I wrote a new intro (possibly being deleted as I type) that tried to convey how the SaaS part was sometimes included in the meaning. The offsite thing, that's just semantic creep. from someone selling offiste SaaS in a cloud. I dunno what to do. OsamaBinLogin (talk) 06:09, 7 July 2011 (UTC)

Cloud is essentially the migration from product to service — aka utility computing. There was a good WP:LEDE developed via (arduous) consensus a while back but I've thrown the NIST definition in there for now with a view to revisiting it later. -- samj inout 18:17, 5 August 2011 (UTC)

Open Source Cloud Projects

In the Open Source section of the article, is there any reason that there are not links to the Wiki pages on Eucalyptus, Nimbus, OpenNebula, etc? Eucalyptus and OpenNebula are mentioned in the history. One area which lists all the open source projects may be of interest to people.

Rsousatx (talk) 20:36, 12 July 2011 (UTC)

Sounds like a job for a category. -- samj inout 19:48, 6 August 2011 (UTC)
Your category: Category:Open source cloud computing. Enjoy. -- samj inout 20:29, 6 August 2011 (UTC)

Cloud Storage

An editor has done a bold edit and removed the section about cloud storage from this article. Cloud storage is an extremely important part of the Cloud computing area, and should be covered by this article (in WP:SUMMARY style). In spirit of consensus building, I am opening this for discussion - I believe this material should be restored. Marokwitz (talk) 05:15, 24 July 2011 (UTC)

...and as I said in my reversion: "as is cloud infrastructure, cloud networking, cloud computation, cloud platforms, cloud software, etc. etc. etc. — storage is not exceptional", and it already has a dedicated article as well as one (you created) for cloud storage gateways. The article has been tagged for cleanup, and this was part of that cleanup. -- samj inout 11:02, 24 July 2011 (UTC)
Having a detailed article does not mean that it shouldn't be covered here. It is WP:SUMMARY style. Cloud storage is a key component in Cloud computing. Lets see what other editors have to say. Marokwitz (talk) 13:53, 24 July 2011 (UTC)
Are you also proposing, then, that we add a WP:SUMMARY for all the other "key components" as well, and if not, what's so special about storage? -- samj inout 16:52, 24 July 2011 (UTC)
Also, where were you planning to put it without screwing up the structure of the rest of the article? -- samj inout 16:53, 24 July 2011 (UTC)
Frankly I have no idea what you meant by "cloud computation", "cloud networking", "cloud platforms", "cloud software", these are vague terms, which are redlinks or redirects to the current article. Cloud storage is a main component and one of the primary applications of Cloud computing platforms, and one of the most notable topics in present day IT. Marokwitz (talk) 17:22, 24 July 2011 (UTC)
Block storage is a minor component of cloud infrastructure and object storage a minor component of platforms — if it's to be included then we should also include all the other components. Computing and networking are at least as important, as are app runtimes. Then there's message queues, and let's not forget about structured storage — both relational and non-relational databases. You didn't mention how you'd structure the article either — previously it was a[n obviously inappropriate] top level category. -- samj inout 19:48, 24 July 2011 (UTC)
Message queues and structured storage are not nearly as prominent parts of the cloud business, but I do not object to their inclusion. Computing is already covered. The need for better structure is not a good reason to delete reliably sourced and relevant content. An article about cloud computing not mentioning cloud storage is incomplete. An article mentioning specific products and organizations such as Eucalyptus, Nebula, ACCI, Open Networking Foundation but not mentioning the concept of cloud storage in general? Are you serious? Marokwitz (talk) 05:56, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
I've added a reference to both raw (block) storage and networking under the "Infrastructure" section, where it belongs. It's also in the architecture diagram and (along with object and structured storage) the new overview diagram as well. -- samj inout 00:30, 26 July 2011 (UTC)

File:Cloud applications.jpg Nominated for speedy Deletion

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Somebody deleted my contribution without discussion

Somebody deleted my contribution without any discussion. The principal part of it was condensed on the section "Risks" and on the documented criticism expressed by many experts to the term (there's no "cloud" because data are stored on "physical" Server Farms located in the cloud provider's country. The term "cloud" it's an artificial marketing term and seems misleading from the point of view many analist and experts). I add again my contribution and I ask a discussion before deletion. Thank You --Cornelius383 (talk) 13:43, 2 August 2011 (UTC)

Are you familiar with WP:OR? Marokwitz (talk) 13:49, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
?? my contributions were quoted--Cornelius383 (talk) 13:56, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
In the Risks section, I see a reference to a blog (which is not considered WP:RS) and a reference to a PDF link that does't work. Some claims (such as the paragraph about increasing the digital divide between rich and poor nations) have no citations and appear to be controversial statements, which are definitely not universally agreed. Marokwitz (talk) 14:19, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
Take a look here. I'm sorry it's in italian but it's written by an expert of IT: I can collect hundreds of this articles written from leading experts and you can see also interviews on youtube. We have to clearly mention in the article that many experts think that the term "cloud" it's a pure artificial marketing invention. They say that there's no "cloud" because data are stored on "physical" Server Farms generally located in the cloud provider's country.--Cornelius383 (talk) 14:41, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
I'm sorry but self-published media including blogs is not usually considered a reliable source. You need to provide better sources for each paragraph, especially for controversial claims. I'm afraid that the removal was justifiable. I suggest that you try to find better sources, otherwise this content is very likely to be challenged and removed again. If these are indeed widely held viewpoints then surely you can find such sources easily. Marokwitz (talk) 18:14, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
I agree with you: it's a controversial article. In addition, in many of it's parts, the article seems very poor of scientific quotations and various statements contained in it are questionable. Eg: I didn't find any scientific quotation for the term "Cloud" on IT. As you know the term "cloud" is considered by many experts an artificial marketing invention because data are stored on "physical" Server Farms (generally located in the service provider's country) and not in a "cloud". So the same term seems a misleading invention of some companies. You say that "self-published media including blogs is not usually considered a reliable source". But some of the low sources quoted on the article are also opinable (this for example:

--Cornelius383 (talk) 04:32, 3 August 2011 (UTC)

Cornelius, it sounds as if you are trying to push a certain viewpoint (whether true or not) using vague claims such as "many experts". Where are the reliable sources written by those "many experts"? Major criticisms should be included in the article, but only as long as the criticism is backed by strong reliable sources. Saying that other sources in this article are of low quality is irrelevant - I agree that any poor source should be replaced. You failed to response to my request for better sources to your contributions to the "Risks" section. Marokwitz (talk) 04:46, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
The problem is that somebody cancelled my my work without discussion. I think this article have to be more balanced. For example the opinion of many experts like: -Larry Ellison (Oracle's CEO): Cloud computing is nothing more than a stupid buzz word ( -Ed Zander (CEO and Chairman of the Board of Motorola from 2004 until 2008): -Richard Stallman and Marcelo d'Elia Branco: - -Ephraim Schwartz, The dangers of cloud computing: -John Savageau, The Argument Against Cloud Computing: The web and the IT recent literature it's full of arguments. If you give me time I will make a good collection of all to better support my assertions. But I ask the same for the other parts of the article that aren't quoted.--Cornelius383 (talk) 05:23, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
Of course I don't want to push any point of view. But do you think that the article it's a balanced one?--Cornelius383 (talk) 05:32, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
I do know for a fact that the vast majority of reliable sources accept that cloud computing is a real concept, and this is the most mainstream view. Neutrality assigns weight to viewpoints in proportion to their prominence. (WP:NPOV) We should represent all notable viewpoints, but not necessarily give them the same prominence. If you are willing to add quality sources for all these criticisms in a reasonable timeframe then I personally don't mind waiting. But other editors might not be as patient. As a general note, opinion articles are normally considered to be reliable sources only for the opinions of their writer, so be careful to attribute those statements to the specific people making the criticism. See WP:ATTRIBUTEPOV. Marokwitz (talk) 06:42, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
But in the case of this articlee it seems ther's a disproportion.. if we don't insert all the arguments of the experts that don't even support the correctness of the term (when they speak about a marketing invention..) If many of them support the thesis that there is no "cloud" but only Server Farms of various service providers it seems reasonable to me to mention those opinions too, giving them the appropriate visibility in the article. Don't you think so? In the case of this article, I ask you, who can establish the prominence of one or more experts? The only thing that we can do is to report the different opinions (neutrality)--Cornelius383 (talk) 08:29, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
Ellison and Stallman are prominent enough to include (preferably, you should find secondary sources covering their opinions and use that as the source). Again I am not at all opposed to criticisms of the term being included, as long as they are given due weight compared to the mainstream viewpoint (let's say, they should not take up more than 10% of the article), properly attributed, and properly sourced (preferably, in English) so the readers could read the sources and make up their own opinion. You offered to improve the sources during the next few days, so I see this issue as closed. Marokwitz (talk) 08:42, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
Ok thank you--Cornelius383 (talk) 08:47, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
Given the vigour with which Oracle are now selling cloud computing, I think Ellison's remarks (which to the best of my knowledge have not been repeated since they caught up and entered the market) can be discounted. Stallman on the other hand maintains his position. -- samj inout 22:08, 7 August 2011 (UTC)
These edits, in which you replaced an accepted definition of cloud computing with your own unverifiable claims, and added an entire controversial, unverifiable, biased "Risks" section (that is presumably your own work) are unhelpful and have been reverted. Please integrate your concerns with the existing "risks" section. -- samj inout 18:05, 5 August 2011 (UTC)

My contribution has been removed despite quoting the Wall Street Journal, surely a reputable source, regarding Amazon taking down the WikiLeaks website. I'm suspicious as to the impartiality of the person who deleted this addition. Nesjo (talk) 15:43, 7 August 2011 (UTC)

This was inadvertent — I removed User:Cornelius383's "Risks" section, they reinserted it, you then added your remark and I removed it again without realising you had made your addition. Apologies, but in future please assume good faith.
I'd suggest that the Wikileaks situation isn't specific to cloud computing anyway — had it have been a dedicated server or internet service it could still have been disconnected, in the same way that PayPal services were suspended. -- samj inout 22:15, 7 August 2011 (UTC)

Thank you for the explanation, I see that my contri was caught up in a maelstrom. I'll assume good faith in future and thanks for the reminder. Appreciated. Nesjo (talk) 11:58, 8 August 2011 (UTC)

Impossible to understand part of the article

I asked 12 persons if they could understand the meaning of the first lines of the article (those quoted "The NIST Definition of Cloud Computing"). Results: Ten of them haven't even remotely understood the meaning and only two of them (they work as computer engineers in a local company) declared to have understood the sense but the meaning was not clear at all! I think this article should not only be understood by a computer expert but also from my grandma (if it were the case..). For this reason I propose to convert (at least the first part of the voice) into a better understandable one. I propose to re-adopt the older one (13:54, 2 August 2011)eventually with little changes and/or corrections: "Cloud computing refers to the logical computational resources (data, software) accessible via a computer network (through WAN or Internet etc.), rather than from a local computer. Data are stored on Server Farms generally located in the country of the service provider. The on-line service is offered from a cloud provider. These technologies are regarded by some analysts as a technological evolution,[1] or are seen as a marketing trap by others like Richard Stallman.[2][3]" Thank You--Cornelius383 (talk) 15:43, 17 August 2011 (UTC)

Another simple definition that could be used (with eventual changes) it's present in: "Cloud computing refers to applications and services offered over the Internet. These services are offered from data centers all over the world, which collectively are referred to as the "cloud"... --Cornelius383 (talk) 17:59, 17 August 2011 (UTC)

I agree and you'll note from the edit summary that the NIST definition was temporary — we had a long discussion about this a while back and came up with the following (which I'll reinsert now):

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are provided to computers and other devices on-demand, like the electricity grid.

Edit war in 3... 2... 1... -- samj inout 13:25, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
The "Internet" requirement has been contentious in the past so I've made it optional ("typical") and fleshed out the definition a little:

Cloud computing is the delivery of computing as a service rather than a product, whereby shared resources, software and information are provided to computers and other devices as a utility (like the electricity grid) over a network (typically the Internet).

Pretty happy with this definition actually — it may well be the best I've seen. What do you think? -- samj inout 13:41, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
I like it, its clear and simple, without being too specific. Mahjongg (talk) 16:34, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
Cool, thanks for the feedback... surprised we weren't able to come up with something like this before, though I guess we've had more time for the dust to settle (back then the public vs private debate was still raging, among other things). -- samj inout 16:49, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
Ok. I think that now is much better.. Thank you--Cornelius383 (talk) 21:34, 18 August 2011 (UTC)