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Which is more reliable, the client or the cloud

we're facing a choice, as users, and as a market. We have increasingly bloated clients, and (apparently) unreliable SaaS and cloud networks to serve them. Which side is going to win?

I understand GMail was out again yesterday.

Our Stephen Shankland notes this was the fourth outage of the year.

Education blogger Chris Dawson calls this a game of "unrealistic expectations." The tweets were all a-Twitter about it, but the big fail whale has been on their screen so much this year that cable news viewers now know what it is.

Online services have brief outages all the time, and it can be funny when it happens. In a store, or at the library, workers stand around helplessly. They have forgotten how to take cash or make change.

But we're facing a choice, as users, and as a market. We have increasingly bloated clients, and (apparently) unreliable SaaS and cloud networks to serve them.

Which side is going to win?

Having watched technology evolve for nearly 3 decades, I have seen this pattern repeat-and-repeat. We build something, it's great, so we grow it and it gets bloated. So we go somewhere else and start building that.

It happened with PCs, with LANs, with the Internet, with mobile, and even with open source. Even Linux is now bloated.

So what's the answer? This does not happen with hardware. Hardware is highly reliable, increasingly so, as it becomes more complex. Anything relying on software, however, is increasingly prone to breakage as it grows.

Knowing this, will you rely on the client or on the cloud? [poll=110]