So, you’ve bought into Dropbox, iCloud, SkyDrive, Google Drive or Wuala. That makes you an early adopter of that amazing cloud storage that is getting everyone so excited does it? Sorry to be a drag but we think you need to read this.
First, let’s clarify some definitions. Wikipedia tells us this;
“Cloud storage is a model of networked online storage where data is stored in virtualized pools of storage which are generally hosted by third parties. Hosting companies operate large data centers, and people who require their data to be hosted buy or lease storage capacity from them.”
So far, so accurate. That definition neatly sums up cloud storage. Essentially it’s a physical entity that you lease or hire - a bit like booking out a hotel room that you can rest your data in for a while. And, like a hotel room, it comes at a price.
Another Wiki definition;
“Cloud computing relies on sharing of resources to achieve coherence and economies of scale similar to a utility (like the electricity grid) over a network (typically the Internet…users rent use of servers (as many as needed during the rental period) provided by one or more cloud providers.”
And, from the Guardian this rather unnerving Q and A response…
Q: What are the risks [of cloud computing]?
Cloud computing has real benefits, but there are also reasons for caution. Risks include loss of service if your provider has downtime or goes out of business, regulatory problems when personal data is stored internationally, security concerns when users lose control of how their data is protected, one-sided service agreements that give users little redress in the event of a calamity, and lock-in dependency on proprietary cloud applications.
The nub of the matter is this…
Cloud computing sounds too good to be true. And that’s because with the current crop of providers it is. Data may be described as being stored remotely and securely but the simple fact is it’s not inherently secure and it’s not really remote. It’s planted in massive server farms the length and breadth of the United States and it’s a magnet for hackers. If you were a hacker where’s the first place you’d target? Exactly. The place where the most physical data is stored.
With LifeStuff it’s different
LifeStuff offers all of the perceived benefits of cloud computing and cloud storage but it makes them real.
It takes the burden off your own devices and stores your data remotely. But the difference with LifeStuff is that there are no server farms, there is no security threat – because your data is stored “above the cloud” in what we call a self-healing autonomous network that is perfectly secure (You can read about how our autonomous network (The MaidSafe Network) operates here.
And because we deliver the perceived benefit of cloud computing and cloud storage i.e. that it is truly remote and not placed on large electricity guzzling server farms we can offer it free and in unlimited quantities. Forever.
It’s not like a hotel at all. It’s more like a commune.
Now, go ask Dropbox if you can have that! Man.
Written by Mark Gorman
For more information on LifeStuff, visit www.goLifeStuff.com