Cloud is not a technology but an operational model that gathers networked computing. Before, the cloud was used for removing the complexity of the connection between end-to-end data links. And now it applies to many types of server-side like any types of physical electronic devices (What Is Cloud Computing? 2019). The three major design principles and the fundamental architecture of cloud computing goes falls into SaaS, Paas, and Iaas. 1) Software as a Service (SaaS) is an on-demand service mainly for end users that are not required to install the application, but rather can access through website and interact with multiple users at the same time. Products like Google doc, Microsoft 365 are typical SaaS services that are cheap to work with and hold their computing resources managed by the vendor. The benefit is that there is no platform limitation. The users can manipulate the service from anywhere at any time, and simultaneously cooperate with others without technical barriers because the vendor takes care of it. The downside is that the most convenient functioned found in SaaS service are highly dependent on the usage of the internet. That saying, without the internet, Google Docs is like any still notes. 2) Platform as a Service (Paas) benefits the developers by providing a programmable and operational system where they can build and run their programs without worrying about the fundamental framework. Users are responsible for managing their data and app resources, the vendors will take care of the rest. 3) Infrastructure as a Service (Iaas) is designed for administrators where very editable but also complex to operate. Data storage, virtualization, servers & networking are all vendors’ responsibilities (Cloud Computing Services Models – IaaS PaaS SaaS Explained, 2017). The layers of how the cloud works: (Cloud Service Provider)-(Router)- (Network Cloud)-(Router)- (Cloud user/Host).
It is funny how some authors think the existence of a supercomputer or cloud computer makes us degenerated to the mainstream age. The invention of individual electric devices is a milestone in gaining back our power of self-control over our private data. But ever since the popularization of applying cloud computing, our data goes back to centralism (Frantsvog et al., 2021). As I was writing the topic about cloud computing monopoly, there is no better example than Google. Thinking about how many fields does Google products and services cover, and how many lawsuits on antitrust cases they have to face each year. I won’t list them all, but I will post a screenshot to make my point, and also remember that’s not all there is to it (Browse All of Google’s products & Services – Google, n.d.).
Another funny thing is, when I “googled” ‘Google cloud computing monopoly’, barely anything showed up, not even in google scholar. And as you may notice, Google is now launching its payment method and e-shopping market. All the data is collected from us before has finally been utilized. By analyzing our frequently visited locations, routings, our payment history as well as our purchasing habit and searching history, also our stored data/personal information like the password for each website, google probably knows us better than ourselves. The convenience comes along with private info intruding and leaking. There have been cases where google users lost access to their own data. By taking over 90% internet search market, Google provided the best free services, and use this free service to collect, analyze and trade data to make more profit (Vellante, 2020). Another downside of cloud computing monopoly is that government also faces difficulty accessing these data from the third party due to the current CNDA regulation (Snapp, 2021). And who gets to access these data becomes the biggest concern. And the non-transparency feature makes this open data a Blackbox where no one knows what exactly happened inside (Moss, 2020).
Browse All of Google’s Products & Services – Google. (n.d.). Google. https://about.google/intl/en_us/products/#all-products
Cloud Computing Services Models – IaaS PaaS SaaS Explained. (2017, April 6). [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36zducUX16w
Frantsvog, D., Seymour, T., & John, F. (2021). View of Cloud Computing. The Clute Institute. https://clutejournals.com/index.php/IJMIS/article/view/7308/7376
Moss, S. (2020, October 7). House reports on tech monopolies: Here’s what it says about Amazon Web Services. DCD. https://www.datacenterdynamics.com/en/analysis/heres-what-house-tech-antitrust-report-says-about-amazon-web-services/
Snapp, S. (2021, April 7). What To Do About the Extreme Monopoly Implications of Hyperscale Public Cloud Providers. Brightwork Research & Analysis. https://www.brightworkresearch.com/what-to-do-about-the-extreme-monopoly-implications-of-hyperscale-public-cloud-providers/
Vellante, D. (2020, November 3). Google’s antitrust play: Get your head out of your ads – and double down on cloud and edge. SiliconANGLE. https://siliconangle.com/2020/10/24/googles-antitrust-play-get-head-ads-double-cloud-edge/
What is Cloud Computing? (2019, December 1). [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dH0yz-Osy54
Wikipedia contributors. (2021, May 7). Cloud computing. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud_computing