Science Magazine has a perspective on cloud computing and the scientist. The article is meant for the newbie to cloud computing and how it relates to the scientist.
One nice stat in the perspective is the change in AWS from original to current versions.
Initially, cloud-computing hardware was configured primarily for its earliest adopters—Web-based applications—and early attempts to run scientific applications on the cloud gave discouraging results (3, 4). New hardware is now configured for better performance on scientific applications. For example, Amazon's recently added “cluster computing instances,” priced at $1.60 per computer-hour, run scientific benchmarks 8.5 times as fast as the original cloud hardware, according to experiments at the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Laboratory at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (5).
Where is the cloud making progress with scientist?
The lure of improved performance has already drawn scientists and engineers to use cloud computing (10) in research on a number of topics, including large-population genetic risk analysis, information retrieval, and particle physics. Cloud computing installations are also being established by academic-industrial consortia [see, for example, (11–13)] to further encourage adoption of cloud computing by scientists.
11- 13 references are these three