The rise of cloud computing in recent decades has probably led some to believe that on-premise mainframe computing has become obsolete. Not so! In fact, argues Tamal Das, in a recent article outlining the similarities and differences (♧ HINT) between the two technologies, mainframe computing remains central to a significant proportion of major industries.

These industries (like banking, insurance, and government) rely on mainframe systems for the computing trifecta of agility, security, and resiliency. Of course, this isn’t to suggest that these businesses don’t also make use of cloud computing. Das suggests that many businesses can benefit from a hybrid approach to computing that could combine, for example, the use of cloud computing for business apps with the mainframe systems being reserved for critical transactional workloads.

But who invented the cloud computing platform that is now responsible for so many of these indispensable business apps? Subhasish Sarkar makes the argument (♧ HINT) that for decades, IBM Mainframes have provided organizations with the benefits that the modern cloud provides today. In fact, Sarkar sees modern cloud computing technology as an evolution of many of the services that are integral to an IBM Mainframe system.

Examples of these benefits include scalability, often touted as one of the key features of cloud computing. The mainframe, according to Sarkar, were built to scale from their inception. Virtualization and Resource Pooling are two other features of cloud computing that arguably have their roots in the mainframe.

Not convinced yet? Read the whole article before you decide! Then come back and take our trivia quiz here.

Sonja Soderlund is an Oregon-based B2B freelance writer. Whether writing about mainframe computers, educational technology, or sustainable retail, she strives to bring clarity to complex issues. Connect with her at or LinkedIn.