Cumulous? Nimbostratus? Computers? What’s all this “cloud” talk?
To steal a technological analogy, think of “the cloud” like you think of electricity.
Most of us don’t know where our power comes from or how it is generated, but we know how to access it: a power outlet.
In simple terms, the cloud offers a way to store and access data through a wired or wireless internet connection. The internet is to your cloud data as a power outlet is to a lamp. You can store anything you like on the cloud—music, pictures, applications, so on and so forth—and you can access that data as long as you have an internet connection.
Why does this matter?
Standard storage solutions are limited by the amount of “space” available on your external hard drive or USB drive. Your phone can hold only so many contacts and applications. Your computer can only only hold so many pictures and songs. You get the picture.
As your amount of data increases and takes up more room on your hard drive, your device will slow down. Like running a marathon with a gorilla on your back, you can’t expect your device to be fast when it’s weighed down.
When you store data in the cloud instead, you can access all the same information or capabilities without filling up your device or slowing it down. The cloud is a delightful place where your stuff can frolic like digital bunnies free from the fear predators. Okay, that’s taking it too far, but the cloud is pretty cool.
If you find yourself frequently disconnected from internet access, the cloud may not be a reliable storage place for you. But for those of you with high speed internet or newer smart phones, the cloud is a great way to maintain access to your data while keeping your device “light on its feet.”