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You find informative gems around everything cloud.

The cloud is the future. 
It does not matter who you ask. Wheverever they are, people in business will agree with you that the future of business lays in the cloud. Even in parts of the world where connectivity is NOT as accessible and/or affordable as in the developed world, even in the emerging markets, the cloud is being embraced.

There are good reasons for that. In the following lines, I will outline what it takes for a business to run in the cloud. Btw any business can embrace the cloud. It is not only tech companies which can make full use of the internet to speed up their service delivery but even brick and mortar businesses can embrace the cloud. 
The question very often is, “Do you know what the cloud can offer your business?”
Once exposed to possibilities, I have seen individuals from many different walks of life create use cases for themselves of how the internet can support their current endeavors.

In order to support your specific endeavors it is critical that you understand the most common uses and tools that are available to you at the click of a button. At the same time, it is important that you can identify the correct tools which can add the most values for your business.

A good example here is email. While nobody can deny the necessity of a business email account, on the internet email is not equal to email. Various providers offer vastly different services, often at vastly differing price ranges and while initially it might seem that one provider is a much better deal than another, making that decision lightly can lead to unintended consequences.

A common issue seems to be the matter of scattered and hard to manage email. This is often related to “affordable” email providers who are really offering a cheap service.

Imagine the following:
You want to set up your new company (newco) online. You know that a professional email address is an image booster over a hotmail or gmail account, as it lends credibility to your fledgling entity.
So you go look for hosting providers which offer you yourcompanyname.com (www) as well as email accounts. However, unfortunately very often the email accounts which accompany these offerings, are “pop only”. Yes they look like a bargain, for a once of purchase and very low monthly rates, you receive your email and can send and receive from [email protected] However when you start sending and receiving email, you quickly realise that the emails you downloaded onto your computer are NOT available online anymore and the emails on your computer in the office do NOT include the emails on your computer at home.

Thus, email management quickly becomes a headache, with the least-painful-solution being the web-access via the “c panel”… This interface is usually very sparce and lacks functionality.

But there are other solutions out there. 
One of the best email solutions in terms of functionality, features and accessibility (if set-up correctly) can be Google’s Gmail. At the time it was announced, Gmail introduced a lot of innovation into the stagnating web-based email space. Gmail continues to be one of the best email services available and you can use it for your small (or even large) business as well.

I am using email as one straight forward example. However this similarly holds true for most if not all uses the internet and cloud computing can bring to your business.
It is possible to run your company “in the cloud” today and it is not hard. But in order to truly benefit from the possibilities, it is important that you can leverage

– best practice
– reliability
– scalability
– modularity
– security

and the evolutionary nature of cloud services.
In most cases, market leading services are available from the respective companies for a reasonable monthly fee. Most of the services offer month-to-month agreements with no long term contracts and the evolutionary nature of the cloud means that you will never run an out-of date feature set and will always be at the leading edge of innovation and improvements.

Box.com, a cloud content management company, makes that point very nicely in their “Will You Choose the Cloud” video.

This site is intended to give an overview over what I consider to be world class cloud services and hopefully allow you insight into why I believe in some and not others. Hopefully some people will find this collection of my thoughts useful and thought provoking :)

Stimulating ideas and food for thought relating to Cloud Computing & Your Business In the Cloud are always welcome.