A Fog Surrounds Amazon's 'Cloud Computing' Effort

For all of the success that Amazon (AMZN) enjoyed last year, one area of its business remains a mystery to investors. Amazon Web Services was launched in March 2006 in an effort to tap into the market for "cloud computing." In a stretch way beyond selling books or TVs, Amazon decided to rent out its computing infrastructure -- software services and hardware -- to other large corporations and to governments, leveraging an asset in which it had invested 12 years and $2 billion.