You may be missing out on a new breed of technology that some experts are heralding as the computing method of the future. Already, many companies use a system where software is offered as a service rather than a good. You don't buy a box with a computer program, you use an online application, hosted elsewhere. The same concept that made these technologies so explosive is also hitting the hardware world.

A new option for companies that need processing power could be to outsource the hardware as well as the software. Think of it like the electricity grid - instead of each house generating its own power, it all comes from bigger, more efficient sources. Here's reasons why cloud computing will catch on, and help further globalize and diversify the way business is done:

1. Reduces barriers to entry

Without having to buy and manage their own server systems, lots of new innovative companies will be able to get down to the heart of their business and innovate, expanding the diversity of the business ecosystem, and pushing up the supply of different services.

2. Increases global demand

When you can accomplish tasks and collaborate over the internet, the need for expensive personal computers go down. The rise of internet applications seems to be correlated with the rise of so-called "netbooks," inexpensive portable computers. More users than ever will have easy access to computers, specifically designed around the internet. This will push up the global demand for online services.

3. Forces international standards

The information technology giants that will offer cloud computing services are going to have to negotiate with different countries in order to regulate content and access. Right now, there are lots of different requirements for different countries, but the way that cloud computing works makes jurisdiction a tough question to settle. Who's jurisdiction is your data under: your country, or the country where your data is stored? There is a big possibility that the future will bring more standardization in international law. This will help people across the globe connect in a more streamlined way.

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