Whats all the hype?
The word ‘cloud’ is now a common buzz word when discussing all things IT and is used very ambiguously. To define what this is, one must always understand that the definition will change depending on the context of the discussion.
‘Cloud’ in some ways has been around since the start of the internet. For example, one of the first things you would have setup is an email account. This was a ‘cloud’ service as you did not control the email server – it was hosted. There is nothing new in these concepts except that the branding has changed.
As we dig further into this topic we need to look at the development of what a cloud service can offer now and the discussion points it raises. Such as:
- Benefits vs risk: eg no hardware required to run the particular service
- Return on investment
- Jurisdictional issues: where files are hosted
- Backup and security: how will you control security access and backups
The development of ‘Cloud’ or hosted solutions is very impressive but is it applicable? This is the big question. For things like iPhone apps and data, the answer would be yes. For a business with 20 users accessing a remote server, there are more factors to consider such as speed of access, ability to print, accessibility and control etc.
Essentially this point remains the same: An IT infrastructure that suits the individual business must be developed whether it is hosted services, onsite services or a combination of both. This is a topic we will write more on in the future.