Take a minute, and just think about how our busy lives would have been without email, that is perhaps the simplest example of cloud computing. Well, if a minute is too little, we have an entire week to discuss how important (or trivial) cloud computing really is. You guessed it right, it’s Cloud Computing Week on Tech2. In the following days, we’ll be discussing various aspects pertaining to the subject, with the help of industry veterans and with you, our readers. So, do we all have a clear idea as to what cloud computing really offers, and, it is here to stay or fizzle out like just another buzz word?

We'd like to kick-start this series with a short video clip where Steve Ballmer, CEO-Microsoft, opines about cloud computing. This clip is an excerpt from his keynote which we shot recently during IndiMIX 2010 in Mumbai.

It was enthralling to see how fancy portable devices might leverage on the cloud and how we’d all be hooked on to it to the extent of making the cloud indispensable. At least that’s the impression one would have after realizing the potential. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves and let’s first see what it is really about.

The concept of cloud computing per-say has been around for a while, in the form of external data servers, Software As A Service (SAAS) and even Gmail for that matter. So why is it suddenly in the limelight? Undoubtedly, there is a whole lot of buzz around the term 'Cloud Computing' these days. It basically involves nothing but delivering services over the web. And fueling its growth is the increasing number of portable computing devices such as smartphones. It’s also the never-seen-before urge to stay connected, and to have access to data at all times. If you use applications like Google Docs,

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