Google and IBM have announced that they are teaming up to promote research into cloud computing - a technology in which programmes and services are run on remote servers rather than on users' PCs.
The two technology giants said they will contribute $20 million to $25 million each to build
data centres that can be used by university researchers in the US.
"In order to most effectively serve the long-term interests of our users, it is imperative that students are adequately equipped to harness the potential of modern computing systems and for researchers to be able to innovate ways to address emerging problems," Google chief executive Eric Schmidt said in a statement issued on Monday.
"We're aiming to train tomorrow's programmers to write software that can support a tidal wave of global web growth and trillions of secure transactions every day," IBM chief executive Sam Palmisano said.