A friend tells you they’ve moved to the cloud. You ask if they’re “okay.” Outside the context of computers, your friend’s statement sounds stranger than a sudden move to the Mohave Desert. But in conversations about computing, “the cloud” is all the buzz. So, grab yourself a little (more) knowledge about cloud computing. It’ll save you from making embarrassing comments– and possibly the shame of being asked to leave the party.
What Is Cloud Storage?
So, what is “the cloud,” or more specifically, what is cloud computing? The simple answer: It’s the delivery of computing services over the internet. Still cloudy on the meaning? Think of all that hardware and software that has vexed us since these machines became part of our lives. (Or, took them over completely.) Think of all the internal or external storage you kept adding to your system, and perhaps still are. And think of all those “floppy discs” full of information accumulating in your desk’s drawers. (Remember when discs really were floppy? No? Then you’re much too young.) And it’s probably a lot more than just discs piling up in various places around the office.
The cloud makes the necessary baggage that computing has brought with it a lot less needful. Cloud computing takes all that “stuff” — like storage, databases, networking, software, analytics — out of your hands and puts the only the services you need at your fingertips.
Companies offering cloud computing services are called cloud providers. Unless you’ve been chopping wood in a remote Siberian forest for the past 20 years, you’ll recognize the names of the big ones: IBM, Amazon, Microsoft, Adobe, and Google. They typically charge for their cloud computing services they provide, similar to how you’re billed for water or hydro at home.
If you’re not sold on cloud computing and resisting, you’re probably not holding out as much as you think. If you use Dropbox, Skype or Gmail you’re already using a type of cloud computing that’s popular amongst personal users. Trying to resist cloud computing is like trying to “live off the grid,” generating your own electricity.
Business cloud computing is more rich and varied, but for whoever is using the cloud, it’s always “on” — just like electricity is continuously available, with the flick of a switch. You don’t need to start up the power plant to use it.
Simple & Secure
Cloud computing is easy and — especially important for businesses and organizations — secure. Keeping sensitive information on local servers leaves you vulnerable to hackers. And hackers aren’t the only threat. Sometimes your computer is its own enemy. Ever experience a computer crash and lose all your stored data? Data stored in the cloud means you can access it no matter what happens to your machine.
Besides security, the flexibility of cloud-based services is ideal for businesses with growing or fluctuating bandwidth demands. Move to the cloud and your business computing suddenly gets more agile. Scale up and down with ease. In fact, cloud computing makes your whole business more flexible — allowing employees to work from anywhere– from home, while on the road at conferences or workshops or with a latte in hand at a coffee shop.
Employees feel like the cloud was made just for them, allowing to better balance home and work. Happy employees equal productive employees. And that equals more business success. It’s a good formula!
Check our blog, 5 Big Advantages of Cloud Storage for Your Business for more great reasons to switch your business to cloud computing.
Ready to move to the cloud? Already at least part way there and have questions? Tethered Computer Services is a long-time cloud provider in Greater Vancouver. We understand that each business and organization has unique cloud computing needs. We’d love to work with you to customize a cloud solution. Call us today at (604)-595-1605, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free consultation.