Yes, interesting. Are we seeing a very long-term ebb-and-flow between centralized and decentralized computing? Mainframes had roughly a thirty-year period of dominance from the time they became ubiquitous in the enterprise (as opposed to government and research facilities) and the onslaught of microcomputers. Then the guys in "the glass house" were forced to cede power to distributed and decentralized computing: a full-blown microprocessor with accessory chip sets on each person's desk. After thirty or so years of that, we are seeing - with Google Apps perhaps leading the way - a return to having the "computing" done elsewhere, in a centralized location. Not the "glass house" any longer; it's happening even farther away: in the "cloud".
However, the trend is still toward increased availability of computing power. With cloud computing, a small company in Bangladesh (or Canaan, VT) could get access to the same powerful computing tools that a major corporation in New York would have. Technically. The infrastructure needs to be there - or new, powerful, wireless connectivity in its place.
Of course, paying the licensing fees is another story - it ain't all gonna be free.
>>> On 2/26/2009 at 8:44 AM, David Webb <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> That is very interesting. Just think a world with inexpensive
> computers, no need for expensive file servers, or highly paid network
> administrators in schools. Years ago it was predicted, perhaps by
> somebody @ IBM that the world would someday be running on ten big
> mainframes. Perhaps that day is approaching. Of course we need robust
> internet connections to make it work.
> Soon to be network custodian,
> Got Fiber,
> On Feb 25, 2009, at 10:18 PM, Adam Provost wrote: