Cloud computing provides a platform for maintaining, sharing, and collaborating on work over the Internet. Work is stored on servers at a remote location and accessed from any Internet-capable device.
Examples and Explanations of Effectiveness
An increasing number of companies are revealing their own cloud services. Besides providing an ability to use their content from any mobile-connected device, these platforms allow several users to work on an individual project in real-time from multiple locations. Examples include Google Drive, Dropbox, iCloud, Skydrive, and more.
Software as a Service
Often abbreviated to SaaS, this specific type of cloud computing deals with running software through a cloud as opposed to simply sharing and collaborating on documents. In technical collaborating, SaaS is useful for making sure all participants work from the same version of software to eliminate compatibility issues. It also eliminates the need for individual software maintenance such as virus removal and software updates, as the software is run on one platform that services each user (Wang, Von Laszewski 2008). Administrators get control over who is allowed the use of the service, making it easier to prevent piracy.
SaaS further benefits technical collaboration by speeding up processing speed. The software is run from a professional server as opposed to each users' personal computer. This same reason benefits the users collaborating by eliminating required specifications hardware or operating system. As the software is used remotely over the Web, virtually any device capable of modern web browsing is able to take advantage of the SaaS (Turner, Budgen, Brereton 2003).
For related information, see Collaboration Software.
Specific Professional Uses
Cloud computing is beneficial to healthcare services because it allows for “a practical method for building a collaborative model for healthcare organizations to build a multi-functional team including medical professionals with different specialties and medical staff from different organizations” (Chen 2008).
The effectiveness is further understood by the ability to share patient and doctor information instantly over the cloud. Transferring files digitally from one hospital or caretaker to another eliminates the possibility to misfiling and serves a great purpose in urgent cases.
For more information about the use of cloud computing within the healthcare industry, see Healthcare Cloud Computing.
- - -
[Under development by Marcin W. Cencek of University of Delaware][Created by Marcin W. Cencek and Mike Cobb of University of Delaware]