Whitwick & District U3A - Computing tip August 2013
Given the fine weather we are experiencing as this is being written, it is by way of contrast that we will look at The Cloud. This is the term which is used for computing resources that are located somewhere on the internet, most typically for the domestic user it offers the storage of files. Examples of this are Dropbox, and Skydrive.
Some of the advantages of using The Cloud for storage are:
- You do not have to provide the space,
- It is automatically backed up,
- You can access it from anywhere there is an internet connection,
- You can (usually) synchronise information across different computers,
- You can often share with other people.
However, there are disadvantages as well. These include:
- Where is your data stored, so what government can access it?
- What happens if the company loses your data?
- What happens if the company fails?
- What level of privacy can you expect?
- How likely is it to be hacked?
- Can you easily move your data to someone else?
- Who owns this data? (you or the company?)
- Is your (and the company's) internet connection reliable?
There are similar pros and cons, for other cloud based services e.g. Google Docs or Flickr. In short if you are making use of The Cloud, think about how sensitive your data is (to you or someone else!), and if it is at all sensitive then encrypt (a useful program is 7-Zip which also compresses files) before you send it. If the data is important, e.g. irreplaceable photos, then only use cloud storage as a backup to keeping a copy yourself.
|Previous Email attachments||
Back to Information
Next XP user options