Carbon and the Cloud

Why should you use cloud computing?

Well, prior to Thursday’s class, I honestly had no idea what cloud computing was. And, I am still a little confused: but after more research I assumed this to be the best explanation: Instead of installing software onto your computer, software applications are delivered as a service through the Internet. Cloud computing is an Internet based approach on “Software as a Service” (SaaS). Another interesting fact that I learned was this : Cloud computing takes less resources to operate (reducing IT costs and centralizing information) and is able to efficiently report carbon emissions. It offers an advantage over traditional software in “environmental enterprise resource planning,” through providing improved data management and performance and lowering costs. It is easier to achieve and record environmental, health, and safety requirements for the tech world with the cloud!

Another 5 reasons to use cloud computing:

1) Cloud computing saves time: less time & resources spent on dealing with software maintenance and support to ensure IT systems work

2) Cuts costs: customer does not have to purchase or install hardware/operating systems/databases/servers/system software

3) Cloud computing is on-demand and up-to-date: cloud computing providers are responsible for upgrading the software.. .the maintenance/updates occurs automatically

4) Offers security and scalability: ex. full data encryption, advanced virus protection, etc.

5) Delivers greater understanding of collected data: ex. allows for the ability to create a carbon, energy, or sustainability index for an industry, and then one can compare performance with other industries.

I got most of this information from an information blog post: GreenBiz




3 responses to “Carbon and the Cloud

  • gmizrahi

    It is interesting that you cite Security as one of the reaons to use the cloud. That is an important point of debate about the cloud, because while some people think that the cloud is more secure, others may think that it leaves more data exposed, as well as able to be accessed by strangers at any given time.

  • hpohnan

    I think the idea behind security and the cloud is that it is easier to ‘protect’ information when it is all in one central place. This also doesn’t necessarily mean that it can be accessed by strangers. That said, I think data collection is a big advantage for the cloud. It allows us to have ‘smart’ infrastructure (like the smart grid) since it is able to alter its function based on the data it is constantly collecting.

  • nslondon

    I’m happy you posted about this – like you, I have heard people refer to “the cloud” countless times, but I never really understood what it was (maybe I still don’t, but I think I have a much better understanding than before!). In terms of SaaS, it is very clearly to me how important the benefits can be. Take Google Docs as an example – I interned for a small non-profit over the summer and all of the people I worked with were scattered across the country. Most of the work we did together, though supplemented by regular emails, was through Google Docs. We literally would not have been able to produce any of the materials we did without this SaaS – and we were all within the same country! This technology could be invaluable to those working remotely across the the world (especially those with small budgets and limited resources).

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