There’s plenty of talk about the cloud these days, even though many consumers don’t entirely understand what it is. For centuries the term “cloud” referred to those fluffy things in the sky, but the meaning of “cloud” has drastically changed with the fast-paced evolution of technology. Today many companies use the cloud to host web services, store data and provide remote access to that data, and in turn millions of consumers are using the cloud whether they know it or not.
When you upload a photo to Facebook, Flickr, Tumblr, you’re using cloud. Your photos or videos are saved in cloud-connected servers so they can be accessed anywhere, anytime you want or need it. But what is cloud? How does it work? Some people are not interested in learning about cloud because they think only IT professionals understand how it works. But several have set out to explain how the cloud works, and some are actually enjoyable to watch.
We’ve rounded up some of the best clips that educate the average consumer on cloud computing, so captivating even your grandmother will understand them.
Top 5 Animated Explanations of the Cloud
The video features a caveman who painted a portrait of his family inside their cave and wanted to share it to his family and friends, but had no means of doing so since they lived far from everyone else. As time passed, the cave drawing was featured in a textbook that circulated around the world, and as technology evolved, that physical book became a digital book that can be enjoyed by people on their tablets, PCs, or smartphones.
Everything, from games, videos, music, books etc, were turned into applications by app developers, who worked tirelessly to make everything available to people via the cloud but because of certain codes, apps were locked down, unused by people. So they thought of a new way to set things free by making open cloud.
This clip begins with an example of how a certain person only has one photo of his precious dog so in order to preserve it, the photo is uploaded to Facebook, Flickr or Picasa – which, as I’ve said earlier is people using cloud or cloud computing. The video explains that you can picture the process as a giant vacuum sucking up your file from your computer and storing it in the cloud, and your files will be available to you whenever and wherever you want it. The files aren’t flying around in the sky, riding clouds–they are actually stored in data centers or warehouses with lots of powerful computers that hold your data. And there are a lot of data centers all over the world, so when you upload your photo, you don’t actually know which data center is hosting it–it can be in one, many, or all of them.
Businesses need business applications in order to run their company smoothly. Before, companies needed data centers to store data and keep them safe. Cloud computing eliminates the need of having your own data center, as you can just share with other businesses. This model reduces cost because you don’t need servers, storage or a technical team that takes care of your data center. You just need to pay a monthly fixed fee and you won’t have to worry about your files, since these cloud hosting companies do their best to keep all your files safe and secured, thus, you can focus on the more important aspect of growing your business.
According to the National Institute of Standards and Technology, “cloud computing provides scalable IT capabilities that are offered as a service over the internet to multiple users.” Traditionally, you’d need data centers with large server farms that need 24/7 IT oversight and energy to power and cool the servers that leaves tremendous carbon footprint, which is bad for the environment. Cloud computing leaves less carbon footprint since not every business needs their very own data centers. In cloud computing, you can scale capacity and processing power on demand.
This might be my favorite video that explains cloud computing, since it’s so short. It just tells you about the basics: ever since man existed, there exists the need to keep track of everything we do, make, experience, that’s why archeologists found writings on caves. So as time progressed, people were given the personal computer where they store all their data, but not everything can be stored in PCs. Cloud technology was born to help people keep everything without worrying about space on their computers.
All the videos above tackle the basics of cloud computing, like where your data goes and how cloud computing works. So here’s a bonus video about Seamus McManus, considered as the Father of Cloud Computing, enjoy! :)
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