Once you are an Internet user, you have used the cloud. Users might not understand what the cloud is but once you have used e-mail before, you have most definitely used the cloud.
What is the cloud?
The cloud refers to the storage and accessing of data and programs over a broadband connection instead of a storage device such as your computer’s hard drive. In other words, the cloud can be described as the Internet. The fundamental principle behind the cloud is pretty simple and straightforward. The cloud allows any and everyone to execute applications on their computers without having to make purchase, installation or having been able to manage their own servers. Everything that hosts your information, applications and files remains hidden from your sight. Be assured however that your information is available to you when you need it. These remain within the metaphorical cloud.
What can be done with cloud computing?
As stated above, once you have access to an electronic mail you have used the cloud. Individuals are able to access the same information when they log in on a different computer from what they use at home. Since e-mails are stored on servers that are connected to the Internet, anyone can access their e-mail information from anywhere in the world, provided that they have an Internet connection.
Also, another storage box that people commonly use is Drop box. Drop box is another technology that is cloud based. Drop box allows people to upload and download files, giving them a large amount of storage space. It is used as a storage location so that you won’t have to use your computer hard drive or any other storage medium. It is able to store any files such as videos, pdf, .doc etc. As long as you are connected to the Internet, your files will be at your fingertips. Evernote is also another cloud feature people use to make notes by using their mobile device or computer. You can have access to your important notes with Internet connectivity anywhere in the world.
When the cloud infrastructure is used, your computer is actually communicating with a network technology. All applications that are executed within the cloud are referred to as a web application, in short web app.
Even though the cloud is accessible everywhere there is an Internet connection, not all cloud services are available to everyone. Services on a cloud refer to any Information resource that can be accessed from a remote location. Cloud mechanics such as sales force is one such service that uses the cloud. It can be accessed everywhere but not everyone is able to use it because of its login functionality and security features. In order to have access to this technology, businesses have to pay to use it.
Services that operate on the cloud have several advantages. These benefits include:
The technology is shared among clients and different users on a common platform.
- The information and files hosted on the cloud are remote. Your items are safe and cannot be accessed without your authentication and password.
- Services can be accessed anywhere in the world.
Instead of traveling with storage mediums and devices, cloud users can use services such as Drop box and even their e-mail as a storage location for their important documents when on the move. College and University students can benefit from these services greatly.
- Those who use the cloud technology pay a low fee for the software while getting advanced security measures.
- Unlike desktop computers in which users have to be continually backing up their data, the cloud platform is a data-proof platform. In case a computer on the cloud crashes, your information will be safe and unaffected.
There are different types of clouds.
- Private cloud
This type of cloud is a private entity that is operated just for a single organization. It might exist on-premises or off-premises and operated by a third party or by the organization that possess ownership.
- Community cloud
This type of cloud is used by those organizations that have similar mission, security requirements, policies etc. They tend to share the same concerns and provide assistance for a community of particular choice. The cloud may exist on or off- premises and under management by a third party or the organization to which it belongs.
- Public cloud
As the name highlights, the public cloud is made available for the public to use. This is also used by large corporations and is usually owned by an organization that is involved in selling cloud computing services.
- Hybrid cloud
The hybrid cloud is made up of two or more clouds. These might include a composition of public and private or all three types. These all remain as a separate entity however are bound by the same standards which allow the portability of data.
Who is using the cloud?
There many large corporations, websites and others that make use of the cloud. Businesses use this technology to oversee the effective and smooth operation of their business where employees login on a daily basis to carry out their job description. Social networking sites are also famous for using the cloud since they store large information and files of people all over the world. These sites include FaceBook, twitter etc. YouTube is a famous entertainment website used by many. Videos are available to others as a result of the cloud.