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Cloud computing is what is referred to by Gartner as an "emerging phenomenon." Phenomena emerge when conditions are right and multiple factors are in play. Much like the aurora borealis, which emerges when solar winds, charged particles, and Earth's atmosphere collide, "the cloud" is emerging at the convergence of three major trends - service orientation, virtualization and standardization of computing through the Internet. Associated concepts include the democratization and industrialization of IT, both subjects that hint at IT-enabled capabilities becoming more accessible and widely available to anyone with the wherewithal to adopt it. This is an indicator that the cloud is not just a simple trend toward one model of computing.
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