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INFOGRAPHIC: How Businesses Are Really Using The Cloud -- And What They're Getting From It

Adam Clement   |   October 24, 2013   10:22 AM ET

There's a lot of noise about how cloud computing is being used these days, and while the conversation can be as nebulous as its namesake, there's truth in the old saying: Where there's thunder there's lightning.

IBM surveyed more than 800 decision-makers and cloud end users from around the world. What they found was that early adopters drive significant competitive advantage through cloud. See how else businesses are using cloud computing in our infographic below!

*Click to expand.

Survey Says: How Businesses Are Really Using The Cloud
by WaywardAndSons.
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Who's Running The Retail Industry? It's You

  |   October 23, 2013    9:22 AM ET

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Saving Lives From Afar: Bridging The Knowledge (& Distance) Gaps In Health Care With The Cloud

  |   October 15, 2013    9:23 AM ET

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IBM on Cloud Security Trends (VIDEO)

Adam Clement   |   August 1, 2013    2:28 PM ET

In this video, IBM cloud security expert Kevin Skapinetz describes the unique challenges of securing a cloud environment, and how it compares to a traditional IT environment. He also discusses considerations for securing private, public or hybrid cloud environments in various stages of development.

Follow IBM on Twitter @ibm.

How A Secure Linux Cloud on IBM System z Creates an Empowered Honolulu (VIDEO)

Adam Clement   |   August 1, 2013    2:16 PM ET

The City and County of Honolulu sought to create a smarter city with enhanced data transparency and data access for the citizens. Honolulu first needed to address several problems that plagued them before they could be well positioned for serving their citizens better. Honolulu identified their needs and determined how IBM System z could create a foundation to build a Smarter Honolulu.

Follow IBM on Twitter @ibm.

aatranslations Transforms Its Business with IBM SmartCloud Engage

Adam Clement   |   August 1, 2013    1:40 PM ET

Learn how aatranslations takes advantage of the guest model in IBM SmartCloud Engage Cloud Collaboration Services to work with translators and customers all over the world.

Follow IBM on Twitter @ibm.

The Bridge to IBM's SmartCloud Now has a SoftLayer

  |   June 24, 2013    1:29 PM ET

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Smaller Cities Engage Citizens Through Small Business Innovation

  |   June 19, 2013    9:22 AM ET

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Why Can't I Bring my Cloud-based Consumer Apps to Work?

  |   May 14, 2013    9:41 AM ET

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Imagine the Marriage of Social Networking and Cloud

  |   June 26, 2012    7:36 PM ET

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Small and Midsize Businesses Seizing the Cloud Opportunity

  |   June 26, 2012    7:28 PM ET

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Powering Cloud Adoption With IBM SmartCloud Foundation

Jarrod Dicker   |   February 28, 2012    4:12 PM ET

IBM SmartCloud Foundation technologies enable organizations to easily build and rapidly scale private and hybrid clouds with unparalleled time to market, integration and management. Listen to Scott Hebner, IBM Vice President of Marketing, Cloud & Business Infrastructure Management describe why organizations are moving to the cloud and how IBM SmartCloud Foundation technology powers cloud adoption.

For more information about cloud offerings from IBM, visit
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Cloud Computing: Visibility, Control And Automation For Your Data Center

Jarrod Dicker   |   February 28, 2012    4:02 PM ET

IBM's Integrated Service Management solutions offers workload optimized systems, data center optimization, improved service delivery and easier risk mitigation. Smarter data for a smarter planet.

Integrated Service Management is all about helping our customers manage the size, scope, and complexity of their information technology assets and resources. A typical data center lasts 15 to 30 years. How do they keep up with the changes in technology, with the changes in computing models like cloud? So we're really focused on helping customers with these three issues; the ability to keep up with their growth, manage their costs, and be flexible and responsive. So what I like about this concept of IBM Smarter Data Center is the idea that this is providing a holistic view of the data center based on real world workloads, virtualization, service management, putting it context with critical issues such as security, manageability, and automation. And cloud computing can help here in this instance by combining virtualization, automation, and standardization to deliver services faster and in a flexible fashion. IBM's going through the whole process and put together a solution that can be applied and work in the realtime and be implemented in a very short time. We know how to optimize the hardware, the middleware underneath the applications to deliver the best performance for our clients. I think this is the unique thing that we bring into the marketplace end-to-end across the data center in optimizing workloads for integrated service managed environments in a delivery model that is best for each client. Well, IBM's Smarter Data Center really is making reality out of promises that have been held out to the industry, not just by IBM, but across the board. In other words, knowing what you have and what it's doing, and from that deriving patterns of control. How should you manage it, maintain it, what are the patterns, the indicators of wear and failure and things of this nature, and by operating on a continuous improvement closed-loop basis to be able to move to full automation. IBM has established itself as a leader in the thinking and as well as in the application of IT technology.

Original video/content seen here:

When it Comes to Cloud Computing, It's Deja Vu All Over Again

Lauren States   |   January 31, 2012    7:53 AM ET

It seems like everywhere we look someone is talking or writing about "the cloud." The recent Consumer Electronics Show featured everything from 3D televisions to cars connected to the cloud. For someone like me, this is great to see and it's an extremely exciting time to be in the technology field.

While talking to my niece last week, I came to a realization. She asked, "Aunt Lauren, what do you do at work now?" I replied that I help companies use cloud computing and went into details that no young adult should suffer through, which ended with me asking whether she understood.

Her response was, "You mean like the icloud thing from Apple?"

This struck me in two ways. One is that cloud computing has officially permeated outside of the tech world. The second is that, at its core, the idea of cloud computing is simple. We are removing all of the complexity associated with using information technology and giving people access to computing power they would never have had before.

But for some people who have spent a lifetime building all of that complexity in, that's a tough pill to swallow.

In 2003, Nicholas Carr's article in The Harvard Business Review, titled ''IT Doesn't Matter,'' questioned corporate America's faith in the value of technology. He argued that information technology is inevitably headed in the same direction as the railroads, the telegraph, electricity and the internal combustion engine.

At the time, this was considered by many as heresy. Whether you agree with the premise or not, Carr's point wasn't that technology was no longer necessary, it was that the focus should no longer be on the technology itself but on what people and companies can do with it.

Almost a decade later, I feel like we're having this conversation all over again with cloud computing. Does cloud computing truly matter?

According to Forrester Research, cloud computing will grow from the $41 billion business it was in 2010 to $241 billion in 2020. So, the answer is a resounding yes, but not for all the right reasons.

Up until now, in the five-year span of the cloud craze, most corporate leaders and people have relied on their technology suppliers or the media to define the cloud and tell them how this new style of computing will work.

But now that the hype is settling down, the discussion needs to quickly shift to one about outcomes -- often through new business models now made possible by the cloud. What matters next is how business and consumers will use it and I think that is where the fun really begins.

The cloud is already re-shaping industries in new and interesting ways:

- In Italy, at the University of Bari, a team built a cloud that allows local fishermen to auction their catch while still at sea. By creating more demand for the fishermen's product, the cloud has increased income by 25% while reducing time-to-market by 70%. Now the team is scaling the solution to create new business models for the winemaking and transportation industries.

- Researchers at Freie Universität Berlin are creating better methods for analyzing human blood proteins as a means of detecting diseases earlier than was previously possible. By working closely with mathematicians and other collaborators, computer scientists at the university created a cloud that enables scientists to analyze 12,000 patient records in real time -- each comprising roughly 2.5 gigabytes of data -- at a rate approximately 250 times faster than they had before.

Changing retail markets, medicine, consumer electronics and media are all possible with cloud computing. Fundamental changes in computing models don't come around very often, but if we focus on what we can do rather than how we do it, we're already making progress.

To learn more on how cloud computing is transforming industries, click here.

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