At the Ref Desk (11/11/17): Getting down to the wire. Next week, finals... [more...]

Cloud Computing : The Un-Definition

Submitted by Leo Klein on Wed, 9/23/09 (11:52am)

CIL_0909.gifI was out on the prowl for articles for this month's CurrentCites, when I came across an interesting article called "Libraries in the Cloud: Making a Case for Google and Amazon" in this month's 'Computers in Libraries'.

Maybe I'm being too picky but I don't think the author gets off to the best start with this definition of the subject:

"Many definitions exist for cloud computing, and a uniform definition is hard to find. In its most basic form, cloud computing is the availability of IT-type needs offered as services, often through a third-party vendor."

I 'spose that's right but frankly you could say the same thing about the guy who comes in and fixes our HP printers when they're on the fritz.

The missing ingredient of course which admittedly the author gets to a sentence or two further down, is 'hosted through the web'. I think I'd have put that in a bit earlier.

In any case, besides that, the article is a good introduction to the subject from a library point of view.

UPDATE: While I'm at it, CiL also has an interesting article on an almost DIY approach to archiving websites called, "Web Archiving for the Rest of Us". They look at "donation-ware" SiteSucker for harvesting and then Apple's Time Machine and FileMerge for version control. Quite resourceful!