Starbucks launched a Web site for its "I'm In!" community-service campaign using Salesforce's Force.com Sites and development help from cloud specialist Appirio. The site listed 30,000 volunteer opportunities, and, at last count, users had committed to more than 1.3 million hours of service.
Pathwork Diagnostics uses Univa UD's UniCloud and Amazon EC2 for on-demand high-performance computing. Pathwork Diagnostics develops molecular diagnostic tests used by oncologists to diagnose tumors, work that requires analyzing libraries of gene expression profiles.
Infosys is using Microsoft's Windows Azure cloud services, including SQL Data Services, to develop cloud-based software capabilities that would let automobile dealers share information on inventories and other resources. Infosys demonstrated a prototype of the app at Microsoft's Professional Developers Conference last fall.
Best Buy's Giftag applet uses Google App Engine to let users create and share wish lists from Web pages they visit. The browser add-on was built using the hProduct microformatting standard and App Engine's datastore API.
Wang Fu Jing Department Store, a retailer in China, uses IBM cloud services, including supply chain management software for its network of retail stores.
Virgin America and Google recently hosted an online puzzle challenge that allowed travelers to participate in the game using in-flight WiFi. The promo was meant to demonstrate the ability to use Google Apps documents and e-mail not just on the ground, but in the air.
Marketing firm Digitaria used Amazon's EC2 to launch a global marketing campaign to promote Hasbro's Monopoly Here & Now, World Edition. A Web site, created in 40 languages, let users vote on cities to be included in the game.
These are just a few examples of cloud bursting, storage, hosting, and media distribution that have crossed my desk recently, and the list keeps growing. Weigh in here with more real-world scenarios.