Here in Madrid, the weather is sunny and warm, and there is clearly great anticipation for tonight's match between Spain and Russia in the Euro2008 soccer tournament.
Now my team and I just have to find a good tapas bar to take in the game! (Any suggestions welcome, as I warmly embrace all crowdsourcing input.)
In China and Africa, the weather is a bit more overcast as IBM announces the opening of two new cloud computing centers, but in a good way.
If you've not been following the IT weather of late, cloud computing is gaining significant traction in the market.
(Check out Nick Carr's recent book on the subject, "The Big Switch," if you're looking for a good 101 on cloud computing).
The shift to cloud computing is being driven by several key forces, including the substantial growth recently witnessed around business collaboration, connected devices, real-time data streams (think Twitter), social networking, and even mobile commerce.
Cloud computing can help governments, businesses, and even individuals to access super-computing power, analysis of massive amounts of data, and applications five to 10-times more cost effectively.
These new cloud centers in China and Africa are designed to help clients there tackle issues they would otherwise not be able to address.
In sub-Saharan Africa, IBM has already set aside $120M U.S. over two years to capitalize on the skills and expertise of the African population as they work to modernize and build out fundamental business infrastructures.
The cloud computing center in Beijing will draw upon experts from IBM's R&D labs in China, one of IBM's eight research labs worldwide and which employs more than 3,200 engineers and scientists.
The Beijing center will help clients test proofs of concept, as well as design and deploy cloud computing infrastructures and projects. It will also provide clients with resources such as reference studies and skills training about the cloud computing environment.
Meanwhile, if the weather in Vienna can just hold tonight for the match between Spain and Russia, it's gonna be nothin' but blue skies.
Learn more about these new computing centers here.