Chapter 1Welcome to Cloud Computing

One or two office moves ago, I was able to see Seattle’s football and baseball stadiums from the window of my seventh-floor office. Built side-by-side during an economic boom, these expensive and high-capacity facilities sit empty for the most part. By my calculations, these buildings see peak usage one percent of the time at most. On average, they’re empty. Hundreds of millions of dollars of capital sit idle. I use this stadium analogy—and have done so many times over the last few years—to help my audiences understand the business value of cloud computing.

Now, instead of a stadium, think of a large-scale corporate data center. It’s packed with expensive, rapidly depreciating servers that wait, unutilized, ...

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