Cloud Computing has been a buzz word in the IT industry for quite some time now and with the release of Windows 8, Cloud Computing has officially arrived for the consumer – but are we ready?
What IS Cloud Computing?
“Cloud computing is the use of computing resources (hardware and software) that are delivered as a service over a network (typically the Internet). The name comes from the use of a cloud-shaped symbol as an abstraction for the complex infrastructure it contains in system diagrams. Cloud computing entrusts remote services with a user’s data, software and computation.” (Thanks, Wikipedia)
Basically, The Cloud is like an internet platform with software (i.e. MS Office) and storage space all set-up and ready for you to use. Most of us are already using The Cloud, even if it is just in form of an online email account like Gmail.
Every Cloud has a Silver Lining!
Cloud Computing certainly has its advantages:
1) Speed and Ease
– No software installation or upgrading is necessary on your device, your cloud provider will do
it all for you – you just login and go
– sharing files has never been easier: with your data stored in the Cloud, you can access it from anywhere (with an internet connection) and from various devices, i.e. mobile phone, touch pad or computer
2) Costs and Savings
– No software purchase is necessary – Cloud Computing is offered on a pay-as-you-go basis (monthly or yearly) with the flexibility to adjusting your resources to what you actually need
– reduced costs of in-house technicians
– with less data and software on your computer, you can save on storage space on your hardware
– storing your data in The Cloud not only allows for easy file sharing, but protects it from hardware
failure and theft, fire or any other catastrophe
But not Every Cloud has a Silver Lining
It really is quite simple: NO network / internet access equals NO Cloud Computing!
Although superfast and reliable broadband speeds are made available throughout the UK, it simply is not yet as reliable as other utilities, i.e. electricity.
At this time, the migration to Cloud Computing is often not yet justifying the expense yet.
How safe is Cloud Computing?
Probably just as safe and vulnerable as data on your computer.
Although some might argue, that a Cloud Computing server is more likely to be attacked maliciously, the argument is out weight by the fact The Cloud is likely to be maintained by professionals, with data usually backed up regularly, 1st class Anti-Virus in place and another server ready if one goes down.
Obviously, if you choose Cloud Computing, make sure your Cloud professionals are certified and happy (and available) to help – always try before you buy.
The future of Cloud Computing
If you are still a little confused about Cloud Computing or just not prepared to take it serious quite yet, have a look at this Youtube Video: First Cloud Computing Rap. (Edit: video is currently down…)
Cloud Computing is still in its toddler stages and the word on the street is that people are still feeling apprehensive about passing over control to a virtual Cloud and much prefer their own equipment and a real person to talk to when things go wrong. Personally, a combination of the two is probably the best solution at the moment, but, ready or not, Cloud Computing is here to stay for good if not ready to take over the world quite yet.
Have PC Harmony,
so you can concentrate on the more important things in life…