Cloudy with a chance of success?

This week, we find a new major announcement in the geek world.  For a while now, cloud computing has been ‘the rage’.  Thousands of computers set up to be one mega system for multiple computing needs.  It’s basically utilizing network(s) (Internet in some cases) to connect services and “computers” so that it appears seamless, like one giant computer.  What this does is give the average user a huge amount of computing power and storage with little upfront cost.  Normally when companies set up shop, they must invest in servers.  Whether it’s hosted on location, or colocation in some server farm somewhere, there’s a big difference.  For some companies, it makes more sense to manage the servers in house, with giant upfront investment costs in a server room and the servers themselves, which are definitely not cheap.  Even in the hosted sense, the monthly fees are high for good machines, and we have to rely on someone else to make sure the hardware is working and their connections are sound, but usually redundancy is costly.  In the cloud computing theory, there is automatic redundancy, no upfront costs, no server management necessary.  For some this would be great, others, not so much.

But the latest thing to go up in the clouds is mySQL thanks to Amazon.  For a “nominal fee” you can house your mega database on a system that’s managed, scalable, reliable and ready to use with Amazon’s other services.  So, you’d have a built-in area to store your e-commerce site data, as well as integrate with the Amazon market.  Of course you have to hope that your database isn’t too large, and you don’t always need it, the pricing seems to be at a price per hour of usage, data transfer rates, storage per GB and backup storage. So, if you should ever happen to actually figure out how that’s all supposed to work, it will probably end up that you’d just rather install MySQL on its own little server anyway.