The Cloud’s Future: Accessibility and Availability

As Internet use moves increasingly to “the Cloud” — meaning, files and apps that are stored on a device other than the one you’re working on — two factors will determine its success: accessibility and availability.

Accessibility means you have access to your files, your settings, your apps. The implication is that you and only you have access, unless you have shared it with others.

Availability means your files, settings and apps have to be available when you access them. That is from any device, from anywhere, at any time.

As we move forward, these factors will come into play more and more — you will want to be sure that you and only you can get to your stuff, and that your stuff is there when you want it. So far, we have seen relatively few disasters, but they have been noticeable. Can you trust Amazon, or Google, or Dropbox to keep your data accessible and available? Or is it possible that they could lose it, or be subject to a data breach?

On the other hand, how safe is your hard drive, your local backup? And what if someone sits at your computer? That’s an accessibility issue, too.

I see a hybrid option like Google Drive or Dropbox being the safest route for now. Files are stored on all your devices, and they are in the Cloud, as well. Google Drive can be configured to work with Google’s 2-step authentication, which I highly encourage everyone to implement.

I don’t have the space to go into it in this article, but strong passwords are more important than ever. Until there’s a better way, consult for (relatively) easy to remember, strong passwords.