Did you know that cloud computing can trace its roots back to the 1950s? Back then, organizations started using large-scale mainframe computers but due to their high cost couldn’t afford to purchase one for each user. As a result, they employed a practice known as ‘time-sharing’ to maximize their ROI; this allowed multiple users to access a single mainframe using terminals that had no internal processing capabilities of their own.
Since then, of course, the technological landscape has changed dramatically. Mainframe computers are still around, but just about everyone has their own personal computer now, something unthinkable in the 1950s. This does show, however, that the basic premise of cloud computing is not actually that new.
The next notable event in cloud computing’s history came in 1969, courtesy of American computer scientist J. C. R. Licklider. He helped to develop the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET), the so-called predecessor to the Internet. Licklider also had a vision for everyone in the world to be interconnected and accessing programs and data at any site and from anywhere – sound familiar? It should do, as it is exactly what cloud computing enables us to do today. Licklider, then, is a hugely important figure in the history of cloud computing and could possibly even be called the ‘father’ of the technology.
Other experts attribute the cloud concept to computer scientist John McCarthy who proposed the idea of computation being delivered as a public utility, similar to the service bureaus which date back to the sixties.
Between the 1970s and mid-1990s, various other developments occurred to contribute to the development of cloud computing. IBM released the first version of its VM operating system in the 1972 and in the 1990s a number of telecoms companies started offering virtualized private network connections. The origin of the term ‘cloud computing’, however, isn’t completely clear – it is often said to have first been used by executives at Compaq Computer in 1996, but University of Texas professor Ramnath Chellappa has also been credited as the first person to use it academically in a talk in 1997 called “Intermediaries in Cloud-Computing: A New Computing Paradigm”.
One of the first major milestones in cloud computing history was the arrival of Salesforce.com in 1999, which pioneered the concept of delivering enterprise applications via a simple website. The services firm paved the way for both specialist and mainstream software firms to deliver applications over the internet.
Another major stride into Cloud Computing came in 1999, when Intacct, a leading cloud financial software platform, was founded by David Chandler Thomas
2002: A Cloud Odyssey, when Amazon created and released Amazon Web Services (AWS), providing an advanced system of cloud services from storage to computation. By 2006, Amazon introduced the Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) as a commercial web service. The EC2 let small companies rent computers on which they could run their own computer applications.
Related: Cloud Continues to Grow
By 2004, the theory of Cloud was becoming a reality. SugarCRM, a flexible and user friendly customer relationship management system, can trace its roots to beginnings in California. Since then, the company has seen immense growth and now offers international CRM offerings to businesses of all sizes.
Another big milestone came in 2009, as Web 2.0 hit its stride, and Google and others started to offer browser-based enterprise applications, though services such as Google Apps.
Now, Cloud is no longer the future, but the present. InCloud360 knows that, and has therefore released our most recent whitepaper, a Guide to Cloud Information Technology. This whitepaper covers the choices that growing businesses have in the cloud how to make the right decisions. We also welcome you to subscribe to News in the Cloud, an informative mailing list that will keep you informed of the Cloud Trends.
We finally would like to invite you to contact us for more information about how companies in the southeastern US can ‘Go All In’ with the Cloud.