Last year may have been The Year of the Cloud. It was hard to attend any software-development forum (or any information technology event) without seeing the phrase “cloud computing” in 20-foot letters. The economic recession, combined with emerging hardware and software platforms, combined to create a perfect storm. Behind that storm stood three companies, whose names became ubiquitous. While their approaches to cloud computing were different, these companies have gained early momentum. Today, the industry now looks to them for leadership during nascent standardization efforts.


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