Lifting the Fog on Cloud Services
The cloud is a trending topic in technology. Everywhere you go, you’re hearing about the cloud, saving things to the cloud, backing up to the cloud. Have you ever stopped to think, what is the cloud? Explaining what the cloud is can get very complex very quickly. The overall concept, however, is quite simple.
Think of your computer as your house. In there, you house personal items and things that are important to you. As time goes on, your house fills up, and you start to feel cramped. You get rid of what you can, but there are still things you can’t just throw away, so what do you do? You purchase a storage unit and move those items there. Once you move in, you are given a lock and several copies of the key. You can keep the copies in different locations for your own convenience, such as keeping one on your key ring and one in a lock box. You may also choose to give the key to a trusted family member or friend so that he or she has access to your things in the storage unit.
In this scenario, the storage unit is the cloud: it is an external place to store your precious files and items. Instead of being in a storage warehouse, though, the location of the cloud is usually an off-site data server. Anything put in your cloud can be accessed anywhere you have connection and capability to do so, from your iPad during a business trip to your laptop at home to your cell phone while waiting in line at the grocery store. Your cloud files can also be shared with those you choose to share them with and password protected.
With this description, clouds may seem to be more common than you think, and you’re right. The cloud concept is not something new; calling it a cloud is. Any email server, such as Gmail or Outlook, social media site, or online store is considered a cloud. These sites store your information, including credit card numbers, photos, documents, and personal preferences in order to ease the process for you.
In total, cloud services are not as complicated as they seem. They are designed to make the best use of your time, and can be extremely beneficial to your business.