I'm sick and tired of people making stupid comments when articles about "The Cloud" are posted. If you don't understand the topics on which you speak, then please don't speak! I finally got fed up and replied to a discussion about Microsoft's Azure. Here's the meat of my reply:
"This offering from Microsoft isn't about a web based office suite or webmail, it is foundational web services that allow businesses and developers to build websites and services while offloading the heavy lifting (such as writing distributed systems or load balancing). The primitives Microsoft is offering are similar to those Amazon already has: storage, database, compute, queueing. In general, you don't access these through your browser.
"This isn't some new AJAXy Web 2.0 website. "The Cloud" is about outsourcing the building blocks of software—database, storage, compute—to someone else and paying for exactly what you use. Instead of buying your own machines, managing the fleet, and building or buying scalable software, you pay for a service and someone else takes care of all of that for you.
"It is like the transition to the electric grid. Instead of paying for a generator and diesel upfront, you just pay for what you use from the electric company, and benefit from their economies of scale. This is utility computing."
Disclaimer: I work for Amazon Web Services. However these opinions are mine and mine alone. They do not represent the opinions of Amazon.