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Welcome to The Cloud 5, our weekly feature where we scour the web searching for the five most intriguing and poignant cloud links we can find.

Before we jump into this week’s links, please have a look at one of our recent blog posts, Synergy reports hyperscale growth soars in Q1. Synergy Research looked at hyperscale datacenter spending and found it increased dramatically in the first quarter, a time when such investment tends to be slower.

And without further delay, here we go with this week’s links:

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella: The whole world is now a computer | ZDNet

Many years ago, I read a book that predicted ubiquitous computing. To some extent mobile has afforded us that vision. But today as we think about a computing fabric with cloud computing and artificial intelligence holding it all together, Microsoft’s Nadella thinks we should think of the world as a single computer.

Has AWS – and cloud computing – finally hit the tipping point in the public sector? | Diginomica

Last week, Microsoft landed a big contract with the U.S. government intelligence community. AWS already has a big presence in the government and the biggest companies are battling it out for the huge 10-year defense department cloud contract. It is likely we are at that public sector tipping point that this author is referencing.

The era of the cloud database has finally begun | Infoworld

Up until recently, while companies had been moving many a workload to the cloud, the database had for the most part remained behind in the data center. As author Matt Assay points out, that’s started to change as tens of thousands of data migrations have been undertaken in recent years, but there are millions still in data centers. He believes that is about to change.

Amid the cloud giants, small providers find their niche | Fast Company

We tend to look at markets with a horse race mentality, concentrating on the top three or four contenders, but there are a number of smaller players filling in niche markets, making significant revenue. While scale certainly matters in the cloud and it will be hard for smaller vendors to compete in that sense, they can still find a way to make money by concentrating on specific requirements and doing those really well.

Blockchain demand is building at Accenture, Amazon, Microsoft |

Companies are beginning to take a long look at the blockchain, the distributed ledger technology that underlies digital currency like bitcoin. At the recent Consensus Conference, some of the biggest tech companies talked about possible use cases. So far it seems that supply chain and financial services are the most popular, but look for others to emerge as the technology begins to mature.

Photo Credit: Ron Miller. Used under CC 2.0 license.

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Ron Miller

Posted by Ron Miller

Ron Miller is a freelance technology reporter and blogger. He is contributing editor at EContent Magazine and enterprise reporter at TechCrunch.

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