In a recent blog I summarized the discussions around cloud computing at the conference I had just attended by writing that "something big and profound seems to be going on, although we are not totally sure what it is yet."
Cloud computing is the kind of wide-ranging initiative that different people can look at from their own point of view and come up with their own, somewhat different definitions. This is not surprising in the early stages of such a comprehensive initiative. When the Internet first broke into the wider world in the mid 1990s, you similarly heard lots of different opinions on what it was and what it would be good for.
In reading through the assorted cloud definitions, five key themes keep coming up. Let me say a few words about each of them.