When using the internet today, it can be easy to think that it always used to be this way. But the internet was very different even a decade ago. Not only was there much fewer social media, but the concept of cloud computing was nowhere close to mainstream.
The idea that we could stream video, store content online and access that content at a moment’s notice seemed absurd.
But now it is very much the reality – and it is only going to become more pervasive.
Origins of Cloud Computing
While many people associate cloud computing with the very late 2000s and 2010s, it is a concept that has been around for many decades. In fact, the initial idea for cloud computing can be traced back to the 1960s!
The very first mention of a concept resembling modern cloud computing is one coined by JCR Licklider in the 1960s. He came up with an idea he called the “intergalactic computer network.”
His vision is remarkably similar to what we see today. Licklider believed there should be a connected system that allowed people around the world to access programs and data from any site, anywhere!
Salesforce and Modern Cloud Computing
A huge leap for cloud computing came about in 1999, when Salesforce.com showed up. The company came up with the idea of delivering enterprise applications through a basic website.
Salesforce is how a giant in the CRM (customer relationship management) world. The company would deliver specialist and mainstream software applications to its various corporate and commercial clients since the early 2000s.
Now we have many players in the SaaS (software as a service) industry, with companies such as Microsoft, Oracle and SAP providing a multitude of services to clients.
Another big leap for cloud computing arrived in 2009 when Google was able to offer browser-based applications. These were known as Google Apps at the time. Now it is the G Suite.
Google offers certain apps to users for free, such as Google Docs and Sheets. But it also has corporate offerings, which are similar versions of these apps but with more features and greater support.
The Future of the Cloud
There is no doubt that cloud computing is here to stay. Small and large businesses have seen the value in cloud-based software and server solutions.
Not only are these solutions less troublesome for companies, but they often come with a much lower entry cost. A small business can now utilize server functionality that would otherwise require a huge hardware backbone.
A major change is arriving to cloud computing in the form of 5G. The promised data speeds and low latency of 5G means that cloud computing will explode in a way we have not seen before.
Users will now be able to do almost anything they want, through the smallest of devices. Not only will it have far reaching implications for entertainment, but also for the internet of things and various industries.
Cloud computing was seen a silly gimmick by many consumers when it first emerged. But now it is dominating the internet. And that domination is only going to accelerate in the coming years!