Can someone please explain what “cloud computing” is in laymen’s terms?

Question by natobanato2: Can someone please explain what “cloud computing” is in laymen’s terms?
I am not a tech nut. I know enough about it but I’m not obsessed and engrossed in all of it. Anyway, I was reading the top ten Tech stories from the the 2000’s and it talked about cloud computing. I looked it up on Wikipedia but it still doesn’t make a lot of sense. Can someone please explain it to me?

Best answer:

Answer by MaskedMusketeer
Cloud computing is the trend nowadays where applications are hosted online and run by servers, instead of having your computer run them locally.

http://lonewolflibrarian.files.wordpress.com/2009/02/cloud-computing-kitchen-sink.jpg

This means that wherever you go, regardless of what platform or device you are using, you can access the application remotely and run it as you would with a normal program.
So perhaps you might own a iPhone or a smartphone with Google Apps capabilities — you can access Google Calendar, Google Documents, Google Reader etc. all of which are applications hosted on Google servers — they don’t run on your device.

The prime advantages of cloud computing is that your data is always “in sync” — because your data is kept in the clouds (on the net) as opposed to just being on your device, wherever you go you always have access to the same information.

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