You thought you understood cloud computing, but Hewlett-Packard says you’re wrong.
I know I was fooled. I thought the cloud was this fantastic new way of storing information, something that would see us upload our data and media into cyberspace — a “data cloud” — and let us access it anywhere, from computers, phones, television, whatever. For a guy like me, with thousands of albums, movies and photos stored on various hard drives, MP3 players, DVDs and USB drives, this is an ideal scenario.
But I was wrong. And so were you. I know this because Shane Robinson, the chief technology officer of computer giant Hewlett-Packard, told me so. Robinson appeared on CNBC yesterday, from the economic forums in Davos, to talk the future of technology. This is what he said HP is working on:
“You can get together with family and friends and take some digital pictures, upload them to HP’s photo website and they can call from anywhere in the world and order prints. This is a revolutionary technology which is called cloud computing.”
Whoah. I had no idea. It turns out I’ve been in the cloud for years, ever since I got my first printer-copier-scanner and digital camera all those years ago. I was ahead of the curve! I was being a tech-savvy web prophet without even realizing it.
This gets better, of course. Robinson, who I should remind you is the chief technology officer for one of the biggest computer makers in the world, says cloud computing, which means, of course, printing pictures of your kids and dog, will help corporations come out of the recession. Amazing!
Robinson told CNBC describing cloud computing is a “blind man and the elephant” kind of problem, and then stumbled through a strange explanation that involved saying “you can pay by the drink” and some random uses of the word “infrastructure” and “services interface.” I don’t know, I kind of lost interest in the video after a couple of minutes; my HP computer has a crap graphic card and I couldn’t really follow the choppy image.
Anyway, I took some pictures of a snowman today. I’m going to print them out now as I continue my new career as a web pioneer.