In the year 2019, by now you almostly certainly wouldn’t have been able to avoid the vague use of the word ‘cloud’ in relation to computing. So what is the cloud? And more importantly, why could the cloud help you? What is the cloud? The Cloud is a synonymous term for a data storage, management and processing that takes place either in conjunction with your locally stored data, or entirely online. This means you can access your files everywhere, as opposed to in a single physical location. Office365, OneDrive and Google Drive are great examples of the cloud in mainstream use already, all operating from dedicated servers without being stored locally on your machine. If you use a free, personal email account, chances are this is also running from the cloud. The cloud goes further than simply storing data, however. The cloud allows us to use the processing power of software and computers that may not be local to us, and perhaps even on the other side of the world. We live in an age where soon your local machine will not need to be as powerful as your needs see fit, all you’ll need is an internet connection. Why is it a big deal? The potential of implementing cloud systems is a very big deal. Cloud systems mean subtle, background backups can be run, and with modern internet speeds, your entire file structure can be stored online, allowing access from any of the plethora of different machines you may use. This means documents and files can be synced with a backup as you work on them, in Office365’s case, even saving files automatically seeing the end of the panicked ‘ctrl + s’ everytime you realise you haven’t saved in a few hours. What implications are there for the future? The future potential for the cloud is massive, and could even change the way we use computers completely. As the cloud develops, the local processing power of your computer needed could shrink, dropping the cost of the machine you buy, but potentially spending more on cloud services. Games are typically very intensive to run, and if you’re without a decent, but expensive graphics card. But what if there was a computer in a server location, miles away, with that very good graphics card? Could you use that processing power over the internet, to display on your local screen? Well, Google are currently developing their Stadia system which will do exactly that. This concept goes much further than games, however. Video editors and media creators will know the struggle of rendering videos, the requirement for an expensive mac could be alleviated by making use of a dedicated rendering machine in the cloud. It comes down to using that processing power when you need it, as opposed to it sitting around for the rest of the time you’re not rendering a video. Office365, OneDrive and CA Backups As mentioned earlier, the above services benefit greatly from the cloud. If you want to know more about how you can make more seamless, accessible backups of your data, or how something like Office365 could save your time, get in contact for more details. From as little as £59.00 a year, Office365 provides you with the latest versions of Office programs such as Word and Excel, but also up to 1TB of OneDrive storage. CA Backups use the same technology, except these servers are hosted with Computer Assistance directly, providing you with the latest encryption and security, with a local company you can trust.