Cloud Computing - A Manger's Quick Introduction

For the past few years we have been hearing the term "Cloud". It conjures up images of white puffy clouds floating across the sky, with all of our data sitting in some sort of a magical mist, waiting for its opportunity to display itself on our electronic device. The cloud also has an everywhere, yet nowhere sort of omnipresence - due in part to the really smart companies that provide the services.

Well, the cloud isn't magical, or omnipresent. According to Gizmodo.com:


"The cloud is a buzzword that vaguely suggest the promise and convenience of being able to access files from anywhere, but the reality is the cloud is hardly floating like a mist above our heads. It is a physical infrastructure." - Gizmodo.com


The cloud is a group of computers at various locations that are connected together on the internet. Usually these networks are managed by professional technology staff, and they are much more stable and reliable than the networks set up by businesses without dedicated staff.

Advantages Of The Cloud

The advantages of linking computers together are many, and the cloud makes information available to a variety of devices. It opens a whole new set of possibilities for data storage, file sharing, application deployment, security, entertainment and more.

It has never been called the cloud, but e-mail is one of the oldest "cloud" computing functions. If your office has a website with an e-mail address, it is using the cloud to send receive and manage e-mail. hotmail.com, or gmail.com are e-mail services that run on servers maintained by Microsoft. It seems like e-mail is everywhere. You can read your mail messages on a cell phone, or a smartphone, a tablet, a computer. You can get mail on vacation, or in a meeting, and even while shopping.

E-mail does have that kind of omnipresent feeling.

The Cloud Makes Many Things Easy

Thanks to dropbox.com, and a bunch of other file sharing sites, you can now make your business documents available to field sales people, office staff, a vacationing manager, a client or some other representative. Your business files can be everywhere they are needed in an instant.

Even security devices have moved to the cloud. 5 years ago, it was a real hack to be able to view a camera located in a warehouse or an office or a store front, from a mobile phone. Today, we can easily monitor a system of security cameras; the cloud lets you control the zoom, focus or pan of a system; it lets you receive alerts of unauthorized activity. The cloud makes important information available everywhere there is an internet ready device.

Do you think your office should be on the cloud? Do you want a smoother file sharing and/or data transfer experience with a client or coworker? The cloud may be just for you.

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