So there is a huge rift between how we work in the cloud-based, online world and our long-established storage media-centric behaviors. We accept it today, But that’s about to change.
—Me, October 6, 2009
Only a completely self-absorbed, arrogant bastard would quote himself as the opener to his own blog post.
In discussing online backup in the context of the Personal Cloud, I related how cloud-based sites & services like Twitter, Facebook, Gmail and Hotmail have been shifting our expectations. More and more, we expect to be able to access our stuff from anywhere. Email services are doing this even moreso, since they generally allow you to work online as well as sync up before going offline. But I omitted something that is of key importance when it comes to preserving one’s personal data. How are you protecting all your stuff that you do in the cloud?
Say you’re using an online backup service like Mozy (and I commend you for doing so), that means that you have protected the bulk of your personal data…arguably your most important data. But there is also your lifestream data.
In it’s simplest form it’s a chronological aggregated view of your life activities both online and offline. It is only limited by the content and sources that you use to define it.
—Lifestream blog, which is someone else‘s blog
My lifestream is dispersed across many services around the web. Every day, I use Facebook, Gmail, Twitter, Delicious, WordPress.com, and a host of other cloud-based services.
The recent T-Mobile Sidekick debacle, brought to you by our always-entertaining friends at Microsoft, resulted in a lot of backlash regarding keeping stuff in the cloud. Personally, I think that the anti-cloud hysteria it has spawned is overblown. Real people were indeed affected severely, but you can find much better reasons to be wary of the cloud. For example, the future of many Internet start-ups that provide cloud services hangs in the balance sheets of venture capital firms. When a VC firm deems a start-up as nonviable, sometimes there is little time before the lights go out and whatever data it hosted for you effectively evaporates. Now what?
Backupify is one interesting service that addresses this. I’m trying it out right now to see how it does with backing up my Twitter data. (That’s the free part of their service. If I like it, maybe I’ll expand how I use it.) I wonder who else offers this kind of service…
Note I confess to having a shameless ulterior motive for posting about Backupify. (And I think that they should consider adding WordPress.com to their list of target sites.)