The term “cloud computing” is being used so promiscuously these days that it’s dizzying. I even ran into a company a few days ago that offers its supply chain software in a hosted model and calls itself a cloud computing company. Yikes! So I decided to try to cut through the marketing fog and see if I could bring some clarity to the matter. Here’s a Socratic I did for BusinessWeek Online. I asked a bunch of the industry’s big thinkers for their take on this, and Marc Andreessen practically wrote a book on the topic for me. He said he’s going to post it on his blog, but I haven’t seen it yet. What do other people think? Is cloud computing the industry’s latest exercise in hype or is there really something new and different going on right now?

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