Cloud technology allows us to access and use other computers over the internet. To explain, we'll review how computers operate.
Computing hardware needs an operating system to function.
Computng hardware is physical stuff - like hard drives, memory, motherboards, processors, video cards and power supply. Hardware is also referred to as a "server".
What an operating system does, is it allows us to interact with our devices and to install applications.
Applications are the programs that we use to perform tasks on our devices. We use applications like Adobe Flash, PhotoShop, Microsoft Office and iTunes to do things like play videos, create graphics, make word documents or listen to music.
Windows, Mac OS , Android and iOS are examples of operating systems.
Cloud technology lets us use applications on operating systems on other computers.
We access these computers (servers) using the internet. We log in to a website and use the applications.They open-up on our display even though they're on another computer.
We can create, save and store files (cloud storage) on these other computers just as if we were saving the files on our own computer.
This technology is designed to resolve some of the problems users experience with computers.
When hardware, operating systems and applications are configured together, and something unexpected happens to one component - it can adversely effect other components.
For example, if your operating system is infected by a virus, or there is a memory failure, or if a part breaks, it has the same consequence - you can't effectively use your computer. However, if your operating system, applications and computer are separated from each other - then they're not dependent on each other.
This is what cloud technology does - it separates the components. It allows us access to servers (hardware) and operating systems that are redundant. Each server provides the same applications as the other, and each server has the same (duplicate) files as the other.
In other words, clouds are organized into a cluster of multiple servers and operating systems connected together as a network.
Many of the accounts you access are operated with cloud technology. For example, your email.
If your email service experiences a power failure or some other failure, it won't shut down but instead transfers your access to another server which is an exact copy of everything you need and use.
If something happens to one server, or operating system, then our access is automatically migrated (transferred) to another server in the network, which has a duplicate copy of our files and applications.
In this way, we always retain access to our files and applications by simply logging into our account.
This redirection to duplicate servers is also used to provide faster service. Cloud technology makes computing resources scalable and abundant.
It allows for faster, more secure, reliable, efficient usage - and is an alternative to purchasing and upgrading hardware, systems and applications.
If a server is too busy (slow) or another server is closer to your location - then your access will be transferred to that server using cloud technology.
With this technology you can also install another operating system on your current operating system. It opens up like an application. For example, a Mac user could have a windows operating system to use Office Suite or PhotoShop on their computer.
This technology is a rapidly evolving concept. It presupposes the future of computing as simple display devices with internet access to clouds. It offers a faster, more secure, reliable, efficient usage - and is fast becoming an alternative to purchasing and upgrading hardware, systems and applications.
ources: ibm.com; microsoft.com; salesforce.com