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We've probably heard the saying the cloud is just someone else's computer. While it is somewhat true, it is also wildly off target. Cloud service providers offer virtual machines running in their data centers that we can use in exchange for money, so in that way, we are using someone else's computer. However, it misses the bigger picture of what a cloud service provider is. A cloud service provider is a collection of hundreds of application-hosting, data, compliance, and computing infrastructure services that run in hundreds of data centers across the globe and are exposed through a fully programmable API.

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