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文章浏览→编程相关Access→some articles can read free-Economist

some articles can read free-Economist
some articles can read free-Economist

Yeaterday,i was worried about whether i can still read somearticles from Economist for free.Thank goodness,i can read so muchnews as usural.Thanks for all the editors' hard job.I would saythat you are more intelligent than ccvt,eventhough their newsalways can be read freely,but their newshave no content except praise. ok,turn to our realbusiness,read a outdated news.it's concern about several biginternet service companies' competition.Computing

Battle of the clouds

Oct 15th 2009
From The Economist print edition

The fight to dominate cloud computing (云计算)will increasecompetition and innovation


Illustration by JonBerkeley

THERE is nothing the computer industry likes better than a bignew idea—followed by a big fight, as different firms compete toexploit(瓜分) it. “Cloud computing” is the latest example, andcompanies large and small are already joining the fray(争夺战). Theidea is that computing will increasingly be delivered as a service,over the internet, from vast warehouses of shared machines.Documents, e-mails and other data will be stored online, or “in thecloud”, making them accessible from any PC or mobile device. Manythings work this way already, from e-mail and photo albums tocalendars and shared documents.

This represents a big shift. If you store more and more thingsonline, and access more and more software through an ordinary webbrowser(网络浏览器), it suddenly matters much less what sort of computeryou have, and what kind of software it is running. This meansMicrosoft, which launches the newest version of its Windowsoperating system this month, could lose out—unless, that is, thesoftware giant can encourage software developers and users tomigrate to its new suite of cloud-based services. Its main rival isGoogle, which offers its own range of such services, and continuesto launch new ones and interlink them more closely. Yahoo!, whichis allied with Microsoft, and Apple also offer cloud services forconsumers; specialists such as Salesforce and NetSuite do the samefor companies. Amazon has pioneered the renting out of cloud-basedcomputing capacity. Some firms will offer large, integrated suitesof cloud-based services; others will specialise in particularareas, or provide the technical underpinnings(支撑) necessary tobuild and run clouds. But battle has been joined (see article).

Life among the clouds

The new approach has great promise. It makes life easier forconsumers (no need to install any software) and cheaper, too: manycloud services are free, supported by advertising or subsidised bya minority of users who pay for a premium service. Using acloud-based e-mail service means you do not have to worry aboutlosing all your e-mail if your laptop(笔记本电脑) dies, and you canaccess your mail from any web browser. As cloud services expand,the same will be true for other documents and data.

There are also benefits for companies. By switching tocloud-based e-mail, accounting and customer-tracking systems, firmscan reduce complexity and maintenance costs, because everythingruns inside a web browser. Providers of cloud services, meanwhile,can benefit from economies of scale. Why should every company oruniversity set up and maintain its own mail server, when Google orMicrosoft can do it more efficiently? Companies are already happyto rely on utilities to provide electrical power, after all. Cloudcomputing will do the same for computing power.

The ability to summon (召集)computing capacity from the cloud whenneeded will also give the software industry ashot in the arm(强心剂). During the dotcom boom, the firstthing a start-up had to do was raise the money to buy a room fullof servers. If a website experienced a sudden surge in popularity,more servers were needed to meet demand. Today a capacity can berented as needed, allowing cloud services to scale up smoothly.This lowers barriers to entry and promotes innovation andcompetition. It also presents an opportunity to Microsoft, Amazonand other companies that are hoping to create the cloudplatforms(云计算论坛) on which other firms will offer services.

To anyone familiar with the history of computing, there is anobvious concern: that one company will establish a dominantposition and attract the attention of antitrust regulators.(反垄断监控)What IBM did in the mainframe(主机) era, and Microsoft did in the PCera, one of the new challengers may succeed in doing in thecloud.

Regulators are already acting to head off incipient problems.They are signalling worries about, for instance, overlapping boardmembers at Apple and Google, or the indefinite retention of searchhistories by search engines. So far none of these skirmishes hasled to a big court battle—something technology firms, which arekeenly aware of the industry’s history, are anxious to avoid. Butthere are three areas where users of cloud services should bevigilant, and providers must be responsive, or regulators may yetstep in.

A storm brewing?(酿造)

First is the familiar risk of technological lock-in(禁闭), asrival companies promote their own, mutually incompatible, standardsand formats, as they have done in the past. Moving data from onecloud-based storage system to another, for example, is not alwayseasy. Buyers of cloud services must take account of the dangers oflock-in, and favour service providers who allow them to switchbetween services without too much hassle(激战,争论).

Second, storing so much personal information, and using it totarget advertising, has privacy implications. Consumers who areunwilling to pay for cloud-based services will have to put up withsome advertising based on their online activities, since it paysthe bills. Most users will be happy to trade some privacy for freeservices, but they should have control over their personal data,and be able to amend the profiles which service-providers compileand use to target advertising.

Third, data stored in the cloud may not be safe. This month tensof thousands of people with Sidekick smart-phones, for example,lost their address books, calendars, photo albums and otherpersonal data, all of which were being stored in the cloud byDanger, an aptly named subsidiary of Microsoft. But a disaster onthis scale is unusual: occasional outages are more common. Ensuringthat cloud-based systems become more reliable is in the bestinterests of the firms that provide them, if they want to attractand retain customers.

Prodded(挑刺,针刺) by users and regulators, providers of cloudservices are gradually moving towards new standards and greatertransparency and reliability. If they do not move fast enough,regulators may yet have to intervene more forcefully. But cloudcomputing’s advantages already outweigh its drawbacks for manyconsumers and business users. In contrast with previouscomputer-industry battles, a single victor seems unlikely this timearound. May the best clouds win.

所属分类:编程相关Access    作者:新浪博客    时间:2010-11-20 0:00:00

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