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Cloud computing definition somewhat clouded

When asked to define the cloud, IT leaders tend to give a variety of answers. According to a new study by TEKsystems, 78 percent of respondents said the cloud included web hosting, 70 percent said it was Software as a Service and 62 percent said migrating applications outside the data center.

"[The basic definition of creating a virtual mainframe] sounds simple enough but ambiguity occurs when you start looking at public vs. private clouds, best data storage practices, allocating computing resources to meet application demand and supporting geographic distribution of virtual computing resources," TEKsystems global services vice president Randy Verdino said.

The survey also found that 59 percent of survey respondents said the cloud had something to do with Infrastructure as a Service. Others were more interested in messaging and communication tools like conferencing or customer relationship management software.

Regardless of how they spin it, IT leaders will continue investing in the cloud to improve efficiency and reduce expenses. According to a study by MarketsandMarkets, the global cloud market will generate more than $121 billion in revenue by 2015, expanding at a compound annual growth rate of more than 26 percent.

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