At the latest annual event of the Israeli Association of Grid Technologies (IGT) Nati Shalom talked about different trends in grid technology and how simplicity of the grid is key for enabling the adoption of grid technologies in mainstream applications.
In his presentation Nati also shows how easy it is to set up Excel to work on top of a grid, in a simple and transparent way to the end-user. This is a very powerful solution, as excel is used in many businesses (mostly in the financial sector) as the main front-end application, but the amount of data that needs to be processed grows quickly. By having an Enterprise Data Grid do all the heavy lifting in the background, the end-user machine doesn't block, and when the lifting gets really heavy, the grid can simply increase its size by finding other available resources.
Check out Nati's presentation.
For more information about Scaling Excel, see these slides