Archive » Issue 2 April 2015 » Editors letter: Anna Zhiteneva Clouds: still partly cloudy

Editors letter: Anna Zhiteneva Clouds: still partly cloudy

Clouds: still partly cloudy

Starting a conversation with a person you are not quite familiar with (and this is quite the case of a new edition), it is worth to make sure that you speak the same language. It is not about language barriers in communicating with foreigners, but rather the fact that communication will not be successful if the speakers use the same word in different meanings. It also happens that the general context of conversation is not always helpful in sorting out the misunderstanding.

In addition, the more important the topic of conversation is, the more crucial it is for the speakers to ensure that they use, dare I say it, common basic definitions. That is why, before you proceed to the main materials of the new issue of Cloudjournal.ru, I would like to make sure that we speak the same language.

Today, almost every student briskly juggles with words put in the cloud, store in the cloud, take out of the cloud. So, what is the cloud? Let us get all this straight.

The word cloud, which is often used as a shorthand term for cloud-computing, cloud technology was originally a metaphor. The drawing of a cloud in computer charts originally symbolized the Internet, as a not-so-subtle hint that the entire complex infrastructure and all the technical details were hidden from the end user, who would not care for the details of a process, but rather for the end result.

We have already somehow got used to the spontaneously emerged term cloud-computing, reducing it to a cloud and thus provoking a lot of inaccuracies, which, however, are typical for the basic definitions of any new field of human activity.

Much depends on the angle: for a cloud service consumer the word cloud often implies some processes running outside his personal end device, while the IT specialist speaking of cloud may be referring to the company's cloud infrastructure or a virtual data center. So, for example, Peter Didenko, an IT expert, sharing his views under the heading Expert Opinion of this edition, comments: I try to see the things with my client's eyes, and clients are usually not much interested in terminology muddle. When a client used to have something installed on his computer and now this something is gone somewhere, but it continues to work, this is a cloud. The client does not need to know the details. This point of view is shared by Maxim Zakharenko, the Director General of Oblakoteka company, the story of which can be found under the heading Cover story: The cloud is perhaps everything that is "out of the office", that is all the IT resources, consumed "as a service" from the outside. Quite often the clients have no articulated opinion on "to cloud or not to cloud", they just need to make the IT infrastructure working always, everywhere, fast and productively. Sergey Kondarev, Director for IT Department of SC Detsky Mir, whose interview about the features of transferring a segment of IT infrastructure to the cloud can be found under the heading Technologies and Services, logically states: For me, the cloud is a virtual data center. Ivan Lukovnikov, an expert in cloud technology, who talks about data protection in the cloud under the heading Security, explains: Usually, the word "cloud" is used when computing power or data storage are placed beyond the traditional point of consumption.

Therefore, dear readers, please be careful: the terminology of the booming cloud sphere is in a stage of active development. Until a universal glossary is developed (and, most importantly, globally recognized) some discrepancies are inevitable. However, the team of Cloudjournal.ru will make every effort to ensure communication between the specialists, authors of publications that appear in this periodical, and you, dear readers, and, more than that, to make it successful and exciting. Enjoy your reading!

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