Cloud Computing a New Form of Skywriting
You’ve heard of cloud computing, right? I have three computers because I hate getting rid of technology. Well, four if you count the old laptop buried somewhere deep in a closet. Two desktops, one from 2008 and one from 2011 and another laptop from 2013.
They were necessary when I ran my retail business. Had to have one at the shop and one at home. When I “retired” I needed to get the laptop, thinking I would use it for my traveling photography business.
As a computer user since the 1980’s imagine how much digital information I’ve gathered over the years. Thankfully, hard drives have gotten bigger and cheaper so storing much of the data is far easier than it used to be.
Yesterday the 2008 desktop gave up the ghost. It is a scary feeling when a computer goes kaput. The Eight as I used to (affectionately) refer to it (now the adjectives are far more salty) had a pretty good run. As a matter-of-fact we had just finished collating the last year’s taxes for preparation. Yes, I know what you’re thinking and you are right, I DO wish I had printed my tax stuff before I shut the machine down.
Good thing it wasn’t THAT important. It was only tax information after all. What if it had been my great American novel? What if those hard drives were full of my journals and writings? Without a backup, I’d be a gonner. My book would never be turned into a screenplay. Johnny Depp would get never get cast in the leading role. His acting comeback would fizzle and he’d spend the rest of his days playing rock ‘n roll with the band you saw on the Grammys last night. He would die far too young and…..wait, wait.
Sorry, getting a little carried away here. I’m not really sure Mr. Depp is right for the protagonist in my novel. And, besides, all my writing is up on the Cloud now. It’s all safe. Google and Microsoft with their Google Drive and OneDrive products insure that what I write is safe no matter what (excluding Armageddon, of course).
Of the two free services, I prefer Google Drive, but I use them both. The Docs app allows me to write on any device, computer, iPad, even iPhone. If you are not connected to your drive, it won’t let you write. And, every keystroke you make is backed up immediately. If you type something on your iPad while your computer is turned off, once you flip your computer switch on, the files sync up. There are storage limitations, but I’ve been using Drive for years now and have barely used 50%. When you create a doc in the Google Doc app it does not go against your memory limitations.
Microsoft has a couple of good tools too. Their OneDrive offers competitive storage and can take Word and Excel docs. The Microsoft OneNote app is quickly finding its way to the top of my app chart. Get an idea you want to jot down quickly? OneNote is perfect for this. It even has tabs so you can separate notes my subject.
With Cloud computing the need for a large computer and hard drive is going away. Let the experts store this stuff. They have so many redundancies something major would have to happen for me to lose anything. Once I don’t need a computer anymore to store my writings I can go back to putting my tax stuff in an old shoe box.