A Lot of people are quite oblivious to what the cloud is despite the buzz around the I.T world and the fact that almost everyone has used the cloud in one way or the other. So, what is this cloud?
The cloud is a metaphor for the Internet; The cloud refers to virtual systems that can be accessed over networks such as the Internet. So when people in technology say stuff like your data is on the cloud they don’t mean your data is in the sky but referring to the Cloud servers located in data centers all over the world. Most cloud services can be accessed with a simple to use interface such as a Web browser like Google Chrome, Firefox, internet explorer and some companies offer dedicated mobile apps. Some examples of cloud services include Google Drive, Apple iCloud, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Netflix, Yahoo Mail, Dropbox and Microsoft OneDrive and so many others based on their reliance on the cloud. For example, when you take a picture on your smartphone, it is stored on your phone’s internal memory drive. But, when you upload the photos to Facebook, you are uploading it to the cloud.
So why do we call this method of computing the ‘cloud’ if it is not literally a big fluffy cloud?
“The cloud” began as a technology industry slang term. In the beginning of the Internet, technical diagrams often represented the servers and networking infrastructure that make up the Internet as a cloud. As more computing processes moved to this servers-and-infrastructure part of the Internet, individuals started to discuss moving to “the cloud” as a shorthand method for communicating where the computing processes were taking place. Today, “the cloud” is a widely accepted term for this style of computing.
The advantage of the cloud is that you can get to your data on any gadget with an Internet connection. It’s what allows you to make alterations to a document in real time with other collaborators on Google Docs on your home PC, and afterward get back on track when you get to the office. Colleagues can even team up on the same document.
An advantage for businesses is switching to cloud computing reduces some IT expenses; for instance, they no longer need to update and maintain their own servers, as the cloud vendor they are utilizing will do that. This particularly has an effect for small businesses that might not have had the option to manage the cost of their own internal infrastructure yet can redistribute their infrastructure needs moderately by means of the cloud. The cloud can likewise make it simpler for organizations to work globally, on the grounds that representatives and clients can get to similar records and applications from any location.
Amidst the list of benefits of the cloud, it has its disadvantages too. Without an Internet connection or with an awful one , you’re essentially locked out of getting to your information and cloud-based projects. The same applies if there are any technical issues or outages on the server center.
Also, because your data lives online another disadvantage is that there is always the risk of it getting into the wrong hands. All cloud companies have security measures in place to protect your data from hackers, but they’re not foolproof, so it is always a good idea to be careful about what you want stored in the cloud and what you want saved locally on your computer.
Now that you know what the cloud is, you don’t need to freak out about losing your data whenever there is a thunderstorm.