THE FIVE ESSENTIAL CHARACTERISTICS OF CLOUDS
1 Provide services on demand without requiring human intervention.
2 Afford broad network access via standard mechanisms such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers.
3 Assign the cloud service providers’ computer resources to consumers based on consumer demand via a location-independent network of computer resources such that the cloud customer “generally has no control or knowledge over the exact location of the provided resources” (but may specify they remain in a specific country, state or data center).
4 Be able to rapidly, or even automatically, scale their computer services up or down based on customer demand.
5 Measure those services, “providing transparency” for both the provider and the consumer.