Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

Does the Cloud Really Make It Rain? Jobs, That Is.

Have you ever wondered, amid all the chatter about cloud computing and how much it does for efficiency of IT and such, whether there are actual economic benefits that come with it?

According to the results of a study released today by the Sand Hill Group and commissioned by the software giant SAP, cloud computing is a powerful engine for job creation. In 2010 alone, 11 different cloud computing outfits created 80,000 U.S.-based jobs; cloud-related jobs at these firms grew at a rate that was five times that of the overall tech sector, and they could create a total of 472,000 jobs in the U.S. and overseas by 2017.

The study also found that cloud companies expect their revenue to grow — no surprise there. But the amount is eye-popping: $20 billion per year for the next five years. Add the interest of venture capitalists, who are expected to pour $30 billion worth of investments into cloud companies over five years, and you get an additional 213,000 U.S.-based jobs over five years, the study found.

And businesses that embrace the cloud will save big, the study says: $625 billion over five years, much of which can be reinvested in other things.

Generally speaking, the study validates what many in and around the cloud-computing business have long suspected intuitively, but never really laid out in one place. The full report (PDF) is mostly a gathering of data from reports put together by Gartner, McKinsey & Company and IHS. Even so, altogether it stands out as a nice summary of what’s good about the cloud.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald