The world is rapidly transforming due to technological advancements and the business environment has not been left behind. The information technology world is rapidly advancing and it is vital that business adopt new technologies so as to experience the potential benefits. Cloud computing is a category of internet based computing, founded on the concept of sharing computer resources whereby different computer services such as applications, servers and storage are delivered to an organization’s devices and computers via the internet rather than having personal devices handling applications. Web 2.0 on the other hand refers to advanced internet applications and technology including social book marking, RSS, blogs and wiki. The components of web 2.0 include technological advances enabled by user empowerment, Ajax, RSS and Eclipse. Web 2.0 has enabled internet users have more input into the scope and nature of web content to the extremes of real time control over web content (Stair & Reynolds, 2012). In business, cloud computing is beginning to shape up major changes in the department of sales, customer relations, service deliver among many others. Web applications are a critical part of internet infrastructure used for financial management, cloud computing, banking, email, social networking, online shopping and auctions. This paper focuses on the business uses of web 2.0 and cloud computing while discussing how the two technologies operate, their benefits and limitations.
How cloud computing and web 2.0 operate
The purpose of cloud computing is to apply conventional high performance computing capacity such as that used in research facilities to perform trillions of computation functions per second in consumer oriented applications such as data storage, financial portfolios and personalized information (Ristol, Stanoevska-Slabeva & Wozniak, 2010). This is achieved by having networks of many servers that should typically be operating on low cost consumer PC technology, specially connected so as to spread data processing chores across them. The shared information technology infrastructure is made up of large pools of systems that are linked together. In most cases, the techniques of virtualization are used to enhance the power of cloud computing. Web 2.0 works by applying web technologies to the web enabling the user have final control over the visual presentation and user interaction. Users get to radically alter the interaction of the web content through scripting (Stair & Reynolds, 2012).
Web 2.0 makes it very easy for an average person to alter online content leading to questions about the credibility, legality and even ethics of the available web content. In cloud computing, there is the risk of theft or loss (security) of an organization’s data stored in the cloud. There is risk of loss of control of resources run in the cloud and managed by another party as well as the risk of lock-in to cloud platform vendors. Cyber criminals will of course target third parties associated with the storage of web presence for several companies (Stair & Reynolds, 2012). Finally there is the issue of reliability of the content found within the cloud operated by a third party and also businesses adopting cloud computing have to contribute additional costs of date transfer changes. It is also a big disadvantage for companies to engage in cloud computing because they do not have control of their remote servers and soft ware.
The benefits of cloud computing are associated with bringing transformation within firms that are willing to be positive in managing the potential limitations. Cloud computing enables organizations to easily change the management of infrastructure including upgrades and maintenance as well as present the opportunity for improved capacity to deploy solutions and choice between vendors. Cloud computing offers access to different levels of scale and economics in terms of the aptitude to scale very rapidly and operate information technology systems at a cheaper rate than previously possible. Furthermore, cloud computing allows for integration of new computing advances such as new languages and other frameworks designed to encourage scalability and to explore other new innovations such as web identity (Stair & Reynolds, 2012). The supporters of cloud computing services are usually ready to assist whenever something goes wrong. Business enterprises are able to receive secure and managed hosting at inexpensive operational costs. There is no need for more office space and the server will contain offsite backup files in case of a wrong event turn out. Web 2.0 can enable businesses conduct market research online. There is increased customer interaction as well as direct marketing for new products.
The use of cloud computing in business leads to the creation of new generation services and products since its economics allows for the creation of new or significantly less expensive products and goods. Competitive business firms notice the improvement in storage, technology enabled innovations and power processing services associated with cloud computing and take advantage of this cost effective technological advantage to realize customer satisfaction and business success. Cloud computing provide relief to business organizations from outsourcing and real time partnerships with information technology suppliers (Stair & Reynolds, 2012). As opposed to the conventional outsourcing of IT services that made changing of anything difficult, cloud computing allows for control and quick access of data. Web 2.0 and cloud computing have created technological awareness and leverage for organizations that have adopted the same. The business challenges in scale, customer satisfaction and performance have been addressed by web 2.0 in a powerful and yet economic ways. Cloud computing has place organizations with the rest of online planet in different ways; employment of social tools and non-relational databases which result to better business operations and acquisition of new perspectives and skills required to effectively compete in the present business environment. Adopting cloud computing and web 2.0 would enable businesses have more self service information technology applications from the business side rather than the traditional involvement of the IT department. This implies that business users will be able to adopt future cloud computing solutions solely using self service.
Cloud computing and web 2.0 gives more room for more experimentation from research centers and organizations and tolerance for innovation making the future of technology less expensive than before. Cloud computing and web 2.0 will speed up market validation and prototyping leading to fewer economic and technical barriers to creating new ways to improve the business environment. Web 2.0 and cloud computing technologies makes easy the possibilities of building SOA (service-oriented architecture) virtually at every level of the business organization. This places the contemporary SOA at a level where it is capable to meet new technical and business environment, develop new business conditions and enhance faster rates of transformation as is the characteristic of modern business environment (Ristol, Stanoevska-Slabeva & Wozniak, 2010). The downside of the business uses of cloud computing majorly face companies that find it hard to adopt new technologies compared to fast followers. Not adopting cloud computing does not mean immediate fall of conventional companies that do not engage in cultural and technological transitions but rather a build up of other recent advancements making it difficult to compete in the contemporary business environment. The subsequent business and economic disadvantage will lead to the fall of the slow moving organizations.
It is safe to say that the many benefits associated with cloud computing and web 2.0 is evidence of technological evolution in the world of business. Despite inadequate information technology background, cloud computing and web 2.0 allow for users to self service their servers. A shift towards the discussed technological advancement leads to improvement of business operations and cost saving which places an organization at a significant strategic advantage over its competitors. In order to be update with the current changes in business, adopting future technology systems enables business to transform the business environment, develop new products and contribute to business success and management services.
Ristol, S., Stanoevska-Slabeva, K., & Wozniak, T. (2010). Grid and cloud computing: A business perspective on technology and applications. Heidelberg [u.a.: Springer.
Stair, R. M., & Reynolds, G. W. (2012). Principles of information systems. Australia: Course Technology Cengage Learning.