Cloud Computing Defined
April 30th, 2012
Looking for a cloud app to utilize cloud based services? Well, you don't really need cloud software to access a cloud server. All you need is a web browser. Cloud computing is simply the use of services provided by a host through the Internet. If you want to get technical then maybe Iíll write another article for those who prefer jargon. But for now, I guess this will have to suffice.
Actually, hereís the jargon. Cloud Computing comes in 3 different models. The mostly used model is the Infrastructure as a Service, aka IaaS, mostly corporations use this model and pay a fee that is based on consumption. Computers or virtual servers / virtual machines (software that acts like machine - you can have different operating systems running isolated from one another on the same computer), load balancers, networks, firewalls and storage are provided in the cloud. It is sometimes referred to as Utility Computing because of its resemblance of use when compared to electric and telephone utility use. Users of this model are responsible for maintaining the cloud based Operating System and software.
Next up is Platform as a Service (PaaS). This is for application developers where they use a cloud provider that gives them a cloud platform to run their software. This includes a web server (cloud server), operating system, programming language, and other software tools they may require. The third and final model is the Software as a Service (SaaS). Cloud clients use an application or a cloud app and are not responsible for managing the hardware or software (cloud software).
Who Offers Cloud
Amazon has the Amazon Cloud Player with upload capability to store up to 5GB of music for free. By either purchasing songs or uploading, you can then have access to your music collection from any device that connects to the Internet. You can play music stored in the Amazon Cloud Player from your PC, laptop, tablet and smartphone.
Google Docs allows you to create Documents, Presentations, Spreadsheets, Forms, Drawings and Tables from spreadsheets with the ability to share files with your coworkers.
Google Drive provides 5GB of free storage with, integrates Gmail and Google+, has the ability to search by filter, keyword, text in scanned documents and even by objects in images. It enables you to view more than 30 file formats through your browser without having the software installed on your computer. You will be able to view files such as Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop with your web browser. Sharing of files and folders with settings you select for viewing, editing and commenting privileges. Discussions and file revisions dating back 30 days or infinite stored revisions.
Microsoft SkyDrive lets you use Office Web Apps that enable you to work with Office programs even if you do not have the application on your computer. You can edit using your smartphone, iPad, PC or MAC. If you do have Microsoft Office you have complete use of all features with SkyDrive. Through version history, SkyDrive keeps track of changes made to your Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote files. 25 versions are stored automatically. Create a SkyDrive folder on your computer and all the files placed within this folder are accessible from anywhere. You get 7GB for free.
Apple iCloud features iTunes, Photo Stream, Apple iWork apps in the cloud, iBooks, automatically places all your apps on all your iOS devices, automatic backup of your iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch, places all Calendar, Mail and Contact info on all of your devices, Find My Friends and Find My iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch and MAC applications. It includes 5GB of free space. What makes it worthwhile is that any purchased media and content from Photo Stream stored do not subtract from your free available 5GB of storage.
DropBox starts you off with a free 2GB. It stores your files and they are accessible through Android, iPad, Mac, Windows, Blackberry, Linux and iPhone. DropBox also works offline. You can send a link that directs your coworkers or relatives to a file located in your DropBox Public folder. DropBox has AES-256 bit encryption and Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). DropBox mobile lets you edit file and upload pictures and videos from your mobile device.
Adobe Creative Cloud does not offer free storage space. It is geared towards users of Adobe Creative Suite applications. With Creative Cloud you have to pay to use its service price at $49.99 per month. Adobe Creative Cloud lets you use Photoshop CS6 Extended, Illustrator CS6, Photoshop Lightroom 4, InDesign CS6, Muse, Acrobat X Pro, Flash Professional CS6, Flash Builder 4.6 Premium Edition, Dreamweaver CS6, Edge preview, Fireworks CS6, Premiere Pro CS6, After Effects CS6, Audition CS6, SpeedGrade, Prelude CS6, Encore CS6, Bridge CS6, Media Encoder CS6, Photoshop Touch, Proto, Ideas, Debut, Collage, Kuler and Digital Publishing Suite. It is estimated to be available May 7th, 2012.