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Cloud Computing… You Can Actually Touch the Clouds

I am a computer engineer, licensed digital marker, and content creator fluent in Arabic and English.

cloud-computing-you-can-actually-touch-the-clouds

Introduction

When I heard terms like Cloud Computing, Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Internet of things, Virtual Private Cloud, and more of these seemingly ambiguous terms, I would feel impressed and confused. It was like talking to a Martian. So curiosity was my first motive to start research to understand these concepts.

So, what is Cloud Computing?

According to IBM, “Cloud computing, also referred to as (the cloud), is the delivery of on-demand computing resources everything from applications to data centers over the internet on a pay-for-use basis.”

Statistics don’t lie

I was amazed by the statistics I saw on how fast this field is growing and how quickly it is penetrating our lives. Let me first share with you some of these statistics:

cloud-computing-you-can-actually-touch-the-clouds

The International Data Corporation, IDC, predicts that:

By 2025, the total amount of digital data created worldwide will rise to 163 zettabytes (where one zettabyte is equivalent to a trillion gigabytes.) and 30% of this data will be real-time information.

Gartner- one of the leading Global Research and Advisory Companies- predicts that:

  • The worldwide public cloud service market to grow from $182.4 B in 2018 to $331.2 B in 2022, attaining a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.6%.
  • Spending on Infrastructure-as-a-Service to increase from $30.5 B in 2018 to $76.6 B in 2022, growing 27.5% in a year.
  • Platform-as-a-Service spending to grow from $15.6 B in 2018 to $31.8B in 2022, growing 21.8% in a year.
  • With software investments shifting from cloud-first to cloud-only, spending on Sofware-as-a-Service is expected to grow from $80B in 2018 to $143.7 B in 2022.

According to an IBM Institute for Business Value study:

  • More than three-quarters of enterprises today are using cloud computing to expand into new industries.
  • 74% have adopted cloud to improve customer experience;
  • 71% use the cloud to create enhanced products and services while simultaneously downsizing legacy systems and reducing costs.

Forrester-another top research and advisory company- now predicts that the global public cloud infrastructure market will grow 35% to $120 billion in 2021.

The amazing statistics go on in the direction of showing how cloud computing is not a term that only computer geeks talk about, it is an inevitable reality. That’s when I decided to win the early bird’s prize and start learning.

I started to research, which is the best course to take, and since I was still skeptical as to whether I will be able to grasp such new concepts I focused my search on free courses to minimize the loss if I didn’t find it as intriguing as I thought.

Finally, I decided to take the Free IBM (Introduction to Cloud) online course, after all, who is the best to explain a technology than those who are pioneers in it.

My choice was based on the facts that the course is:

  • Free.
  • Prepared and given by the industry giant IBM.
  • Doesn’t require any prior technical background.
  • Relatively short, and you learn at your own pace. By dedicating an hour or two a week, it can be completed in six weeks.

The Course structure

The course is an introduction to the main concepts of cloud computing like:

  • Definition of Cloud Computing.
  • Characteristics of cloud computing
  • A summary about the top Cloud Service Providers worldwide
  • The three main service and deployment models
  • Cloud infrastructure components
  • Cloud Security

However, it gives you more than just the basics. It tackles areas such as:

  • Benefits of cloud computing to business
  • Emerging technologies that go hand-in-hand with Cloud Computing such as Internet-of-Things, Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain and how they all interrelate with Cloud Computing
  • Emerging technology trends that are related to Cloud Computing
  • Real-Life business case studies.

So it is not just a course explaining the fundamentals of cloud computing, it introduces you to many other amazing technologies, and simply explains to you how they co-operate to make life amazingly easier for us.

The course tackles another field that, in reality, many other courses don’t pay attention to, which is the real application in our life. The course has many case studies about companies who adopted cloud technology and explains in simple words how that boosted their business. Each case study is unique. However, they all draw attention to how Cloud Computing is a real catalyst to business growth. The amazing thing about IBM’s choice of case studies is the variety. Different company sizes, different goals, even different technological backgrounds of business owners, some of them didn’t have any technological background.

The course has 6 modules (the seventh about security is an option). Each module is divided into various lessons. The structure is logical and makes you move from one module to the other smoothly. Some modules have a hands-on lab which makes you practice and creates with your own hands. At the end of each module, there is a summary and a simple graded multiple-choice quiz to help ensure your understanding of the concepts taught in the module.

Would I recommend this course?

Yes, definitely. Don’t be intimidated by these seemingly difficult new concepts. The course will give you the information in a simple, understandable and interesting way. You don’t need any technical background.

Why would I recommend this course?

What is very impressive about the course is how it explains seemingly difficult terms in plain language that anyone can understand. The videos and the animation are surely a strong point in the course. They simplify things even more.

The instructors in the videos are all IBM developers and gurus – I noticed that many of them are left-handed - who use very simple language, a nice tone, and easy explanatory steps that anyone can understand. They even appear to be writing on a transparent board like in real classes, which gives familiarity.

In each lesson, you have a link to download the video or the transcripts. This is important since you can download the video to watch later or to revise and keep. To me, since I like to revise-by-reading, downloading the transcripts is valuable.

At the end of the course, there is a 1-hour exam which is not difficult but emphasizes your understanding of the concepts learned. The exam is not a pass/fail exam, but the grade you get will affect your overall passing grade for the course. When you finish the exam you get a certificate which you can download in PDF format.

The only thing I criticize about the course is that some of the concepts introduced in the course need a bit more clarification especially DevOps which needs more examples and how these concepts are applied in real life.

To whom do I recommend the course?

This course opens new horizons to:

1- People looking for new job opportunities in a field in which the employer demand is outpacing the number of qualified candidates available.

According to Gartner TalentNeuron, the hiring scale for jobs requiring cloud computing skills at 78, which means employers are finding it "difficult" to get the right applicants for open positions in cloud technologies.

2- Any business owner interested in boosting his business by generating an exceptional customer experience and achieving a strong competitive advantage, making real steps towards digital transformation, or those with fluctuating workloads.

Dell reports that companies that invest in big data, cloud, mobility, and security enjoy up to 53% faster revenue growth than their competitors.

3- Any start-up who wants to start a business with the benefits of new technologies, but with a minimal initial capital cost for Infrastructure.

4- Any business with security concerns should really consider enrolling at least some of its IT personnel in this course.

RapidScale claims that 94% of businesses saw an improvement in security after switching to the cloud, and 91% said the cloud makes it easier to meet government compliance requirements.

5- Any website owner who wants to improve his website speed and content delivery to achieve customer satisfaction, and increase your Domain Authority. The course introduces the content delivery network.

Conclusion

Finally, as IBM declares in the course, the question for businesses today is no longer "if" they need to adopt the cloud, rather "what" their cloud adoption strategy should be to best serve their businesses and customers.

Cloud Computing is not the technology of the future, but rather an inevitable milestone of businesses today and it will soon be an essential pillar in our daily lives, much like smartphones today. So why wait…join the train of technology and Enroll Now...

Sources

  • IBM Introduction to Cloud Computing Course
  • Image is Royalty-free downloaded from Pixabay
  • SalesForce - 12 Benefits of Cloud Computing

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Nahla Roshdy

Comments

Hoda Khalaf on July 05, 2021:

Very informative and intriguing

Hesham Harb on July 05, 2021:

Very informative and precise keep up the good work

Moaaz Abullale on July 04, 2021:

amazing work all the best to you

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