Cast your minds back to the beginning of the decade… Broadband was making its first appearance in the technology world and all our applications were installed locally on a hard drive in our computer. Fast forward nine years, and we still have a lot of local applications, but with fast internet connections, having your local applications with you all the time is no longer a necessity, in fact the vast majority of applications on your hard drive right now probably have some sort of cloud equivalent…
In my opinion Google has, and continues to, make major breakthroughs in cloud computing. If you were working on a presentation or important document on your computer ten years ago but forgot to take it with you to work on the crucial day, there wouldn’t be a lot you could do about it…
Now, you have considerably more options on how to create and store the document – you could work on it locally and then upload it to your online storage, or create it using Google Docs and be able to edit it wherever you are. You could be on any computer in any place in the world and have everything just the way you left it on your personal account.
If you’re working with a team on creating it, everyone can chip in and add their own ideas to the file before deciding on how to move forward without being remotely close to each other geographically, a further development of this kind of working we’re now seeing in the form of Google Wave. Other options for cloud-based document storage includes the Dropbox file sync service which synchronises files across every computer that you want it to.
Looking at the bigger picture, what made cloud computing such a big advancement was the fact that it affected so many sub-markets of the technology industry. Due to increasing internet speeds, people began to do more cloud based computing which led to the creation of social networking sites such as Facebook.
Not only did this affect the market for computers and high speed internet, but vastly increased the demand for digital cameras and mobile phones, because people wanted to share more things such as photos and videos online with their friends, wherever they were in the world – just think how much people share with their friends on Twitter and Facebook from their mobile phones, equally Apple’s iPhone has done much to help further the use of mobile internet and other cloud-based services.
Even today, improvements are being made to how cloud computing works, and I think we’ll see a lot more advancement when Google releases their Chrome operating system next year, which is almost entirely cloud based. If Chrome OS takes off on a large scale, we may be seeing more traditional operating systems, such as Windows and Mac OS to make more of a move towards cloud computing, but only time will tell!
Image Source – Oxygen IT