A Cloud Somewhere in Great Britain

The media platform Soundcloud is based around the concept of cloud computing, or as currently defined by Wikipedia as “the delivery of computing as a service rather than a product, whereby shared resources, software, and information are provided to computers and other devices as a utility (like the electricity grid) over a network (typically the Internet).” In essence, the separation of computers and their applications from the inferstructure and servers that run, store, and manage the information at a separate location. Soundcloud’s server is located north of Leeds in the UK and host all the information that user’s upload to the site, although the headquarters of the company were located in Berlin.

The layers of Cloud Computing are as follows…

User’s Computing Device <–> Application <–> Platform <–> Infrastructure <–> Server

By decoupling the user from the capital cost of infrastructure and servers allows for operational structure costs to rein supreme, allowing The User’s device to be smaller and cheaper. This frees the user’s device from the constraints of location with access to the data, making smart phones access to information much easier. Because I have uploaded songs onto Soundcloud, they exist on a server somewhere in the UK as well as on my own computer at home. By hosting the media on their servers, I do not need to keep my computer on and constantly connected to the net in order for others to listen to or download the media, seeing as Soundcloud’s taking care of the data at it’s remote server. I can in fact access that data myself from a location away from my home computer, possibly on a mobile device such as a smart phone.

By hosting all this information and data in one place, it makes the management of it easier – allowing for greater efficiency and capacity. By centralizing all the information in one place, some problems with privacy arrise. When large amounts of information are stored in one place far away from , they are much easier to be monitored without your knowledge. (I.E. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Room_641A)

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