Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of enterprise and cloud-computing software specialist Citrix Systems (Nasdaq: CTXS) are on cloud nine today, soaring as much as 11.7% on heavy volume with an eye to continued gains.

So what: First-quarter sales jumped 18% year-over-year and earnings took a 52% leap, beating Street estimates by a large margin on both counts. That was the fifth earnings beat in the past eight quarters and the third consecutive outperformance.

Now what: Virtual computing is an important paradigm breaker that opens up the cloud, and a sure marker that leads to market-beating results. That holds true for pure plays Citrix and VMware (NYSE: VMW) as well as for partial market participant Red Hat (NYSE: RHT), and it works for both open-source champions (Red Hat and Citrix) and proprietary patron VMware.

It doesn't really matter what kind of investor you are: Citrix and all of its peers have beaten the S&P 500 senseless in the three-month, one-year, and five-year perspectives. The catalytic power of the cloud should last for at least another decade, in my opinion. In other words, expect more of these terrific results from Citrix and friends.

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