Richard Stallman is a heavyweight in the opensource/privacy movement and he advocates keeping files private and local versus the cloud as he fears that once users are locked into cloud services and storage they will be charged highway robbery prices to use, and even more if they want to extract their data.

This article discusses the different types of cloud computing among the different providers, namely Microsofts “software as a service” model, or Amazons “Utility Computing”, or Google’s “user end applications” model.

This is merely an interest group that is gathering support to keep cloud computing open. Having open formats mean that data can easily be transferred to other services if need be or if a company goes out of business the customers can move their data without having to pay someone to convert the data to a new format.

This article  talks about how some companies that have moved to cloud  services are saving  money and time  by letting services like Amazons S3 handle their data and services. Despite occasional downtimes it has been worthwhile for these companies to remotely manage their data and services and let Amazon or whoever manage the hardware.

This article describes Googles Cloud initiative which encourages young engineers to begin thinking about global information crunching and massive scale computing instead of small networks like a college computer network. The University of Washington has a course called Google 101 which teaches students to think in the grand scale to see a bigger picture and to start work on services that utilize the power of distributed processing and information stored on servers all over the globe.