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With so many technologies branded as “cloud” products, it can be difficult to distinguish good technology from good marketing. The resulting confusion complicates the work of software development teams who are trying not only to architect software effectively but also trying to accelerate building, testing, and delivering software. To cut through this confusion, Bill Wilder defines key cloud terms, compares the different types of clouds, and drills into concrete examples of specific cloud services. Introducing several software architecture concepts and patterns, Bill illustrates how to position applications to run reliably, at high scale (if needed), and with maximum cost efficiency on modern cloud platforms. Specific examples are drawn from the Windows Azure and Amazon cloud platforms, though the concepts are generally applicable. Leave with an understanding of relevant cloud concepts, a better idea of how moving to the “cloud” can impact application architecture, and some practical ideas for exploiting the cloud to improve software development team productivity.