“What is the Cloud”? Wow, do we get this a lot. Ok strap in this will take a bit.
In it’s truest form the cloud is any computer that’s on the Internet. What that means for you is that things you used to only do on your computer in your home can now be done over the Internet. The “cloud” can really mean so many things when in reference to what it does. Some examples are Apples iCloud (syncing), Microsoft Azure (computing), and Dropbox (storage).
The reason we have been able to move to more cloud-based solutions is the dramatic reduction in cost for hardware in the last few years. Using the cloud really allows some companies a lower barrier-to-entry in order to survive. Development teams love using the cloud as they can turn on (called spinning up) multiple computers for a few hours to a few months. Amazon offers this feature called AWS. A developer can literally boot up 1-10000 new computers to do testing with. This really lowers the cost, as in the past the developer would have had to purchased all those machines.
Another big benefit is that usually you automatically get updates to the new software. Adobe for example has gone to a cloud base solution for it’s premiere product “Creative Cloud”. Every time there is an update, the app alerts you to update. This solution allows for easy updates on the fly as opposed to waiting to purchase a whole new version, put in the CD (who uses CD’s anymore) and update. So many companies take advantage of that cloud feature, I hardly ever need to update my software on my own computer.
So when someone talks about the cloud, make sure to ask for clarity.
If you need help with any of these services, Virtua Computers employees are here to help you.