All posts tagged “Cloud”

The free alternative to Adobe’s Creative Cloud

Read more about The free alternative to Adobe’s Creative Cloud at CreativeBloq.com


For all of us that do design, graphics, web, multimedia and audio work, Adobe has been the cornerstone of our lives. It’s played an overwhelming part in creating this market, and owned it ever since. In most of the areas Adobe plays in, it has no significant competition to speak of. And serious credit goes to them for fiercely pushing the envelope of what their tools will do, even without significant market competition. But no matter how benevolent Adobe’s dictatorship may be, we all enjoy some options.




Creative Bloq

OneDrive updates make Microsoft’s cloud storage system better for photos

Microsoft is updating OneDrive, its cloud storage service that competes with rivals such as Dropbox and iCloud, in a bid to make it a better photo management tool. Over the next few weeks, the company says it’s introducing changes that will automatically import photos from external devices, allow users to categorize them in new albums with clear thumbmail images, and use an updated search function to find specific files and photos saved on the service.

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The Verge – All Posts

How the cloud is revolutionising VFX

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Atomic Fiction’s effects for Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey were rendered in the could




Creative Bloq

Adobe Creative Cloud + Moleskine Smart Notebook: Easily turn hand-drawn art into fully workable digital files for Illustrator and Photoshop

Adobe Creative Cloud + Moleskine Smart Notebook

There’s no notebook more revered than Moleskine, for both its storied history and also its continued simple, effective design. Over the last few years, the brand has released successful collaborations with Evernote and Livescribe, but today marks……

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Cool Hunting

Code In The Cloud With Koding

The way we develop and code remotely has not changed much in the past few years. After all, the act of coding itself is something that requires attention and a certain sense of solitude to be able to do well. But what if you are stuck and want a more personal way of overcoming a certain coding issue?

Koding is a cloud based app that aims to provide a comfortable environment for coders and developers. With it, development can become more social and overall, easier and faster. Let’s take a look at what it has to offer.

Getting Started

We can easily sign up for Koding using Github, Twitter, Facebook, Google, or just via email. When Koding first launches, we are presented with a social interface similiar to Google Plus simply named “Activity”.

Activity is your gateway to communicating with Koding community members. When you first look at it, you’ll see a list of Activity such as Status Updates, Code Snippets, or User Activity.

Coding and Developing

Koding’s social coding environment, Teamwork, allows you to share your code, invite friends, and code together. With built in coding frameworks like Bootstrap, AngularJS, CodeIgniter, BackBone, and others; you really have no need to leave the Koding app.

Inviting others to your session is easy, just copy and share the Teamwork ID with your fellow developer(s).

Teamwork is great not only to work on a project together but your team could also help you out if you are having trouble with something.

When developing with Koding, there’s a neat preview element which can be accessed easily in a dropdown menu while developing. Click the preview button and it will launch a live preview of whatever you’re developing. Copy the shown URL, paste it in the browser, and see it live on a web server.

Terminal

Koding has a built-in terminal, so you don’t need to install extensive software or environments on your operating system. Within the terminal, you can host sessions with your fellow developers to interact with each other’s terminals in real-time; saving a lot of time and unnecessary hassle with video chats and remote desktop solutions.

Apps

With Koding’s pre-installed apps, we can further add to the way we code with apps such as Brackets editor, phpMyAdmin,Wordpress, Drupal, Dropbox, Ruby on Rails, Django, Laravel and many more.

Having these apps available at your disposal truly makes development faster and easier. Koding’s Apps are definitely one of my most favorable Koding features.

Pricing

You can try out Koding for free but it comes with a limited set of resources. The rest of the prices are based on development resources like disk space, bandwidth, CPU, and the like. You can choose to pay on a monthly or a yearly basis, as shown below.

What I Liked

  • Work on development projects without leaving your browser.
  • Getting to socialize and work together with other developers.
  • Downloading apps like WordPress, Brackets, phpMyAdmin, and many more.
  • Getting help from fellow developers.
  • Use Koding as a localhost.
  • Built-in terminals.
  • Affordable pricing.
  • Importing from GitHub.
  • What I Didn’t Like

  • Sessions can become buggy or slow due to shared remote resources.
  • No remote FTP Access. Only from the web app.
  • No full GitHub API use.
  • Conclusion

    Koding is a great way to code and develop together. Rather than mess with remote desktop and chat software, Koding is a great alternative. With Koding’s apps and built in coding environments, development becomes faster and less of a hassle. Koding is now my prefered way to develop projects with others.





    hongkiat.com

    Best Cloud Storage Services in 2014

    A few years ago cloud storage was a thing people couldn’t even imagine. Even today loads of people – some even IT specialists – don’t understand the concept. Some fear cloud…

    For full article and other interesting tech related stuff visit the website.
    SkyTechGeek

    Arctic Berry Cloud Milk Cream from Red Flower: Natural, raw ingredients make for a cream with noticeable hydrating and protecting qualities

    Arctic Berry Cloud Milk Cream from Red Flower


    The benefits of investing in healthy skin are not only evident in the present, but long into the future. Seeking products that are both natural and effective, NYC-based aromatherapy experts Red Flower are known for their…

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    Cool Hunting

    Adobe releases 20 big updates to Creative Cloud

    Read more about Adobe releases 20 big updates to Creative Cloud at CreativeBloq.com


    So here we go again. It’s only a short time since Adobe unveiled its last big update to Creative Cloud, which it called Creative Cloud 2014, back in July. Now today, we’ve got another ‘milestone release’ being launched at Adobe’s own creativity conference, MAX 2014. This new release of Adobe’s subscription-based software includes feature updates to 13 CC desktop tools plus a whole new toolset of integrated mobile apps.




    Creative Bloq

    8 Practical Tips to Secure Your Cloud Data

    No more having to bring your thumb drives or portable hard disks along wherever you go because cloud-based storage services are here to stay. From Google Drive to Dropbox, these cloud solutions store your data online and provide you with the ease of accessing them at any place and time where Internet connection is available.

    via pixabay

    The convenience does seems tempting, but uploading your personal data to a cloud provider undoubtedly raises a couple of security concerns. For one, you can never be sure of who else could be accessing these sensitive information.

    That being said, we can always protect our data from unauthorized access if we just make some extra efforts. Here are a couple of practical tips to keep your cloud data as secure as it gets.

    1. Back Up Data Locally

    Rule No.1 when it comes to managing data is to always have a backup for your data. Generally speaking, it is good practice to create electronic copies for any of your data so that you will still be able to access them even when the original is lost or has been corrupted. There are many cloud storage services available in the market today, which means you can set up some cloud accounts for backup purposes.

    If you have data in the cloud, you should also manually backup your data in an external physical storage drive or device, like a hard disk or a thumb drive. This also allows you to access the information when you have poor or no Internet connection.

    2. Avoid Storing Sensitive Information

    I doubt there’s such a thing as real privacy on the internet, so personally I wouldn’t trust storing my top secret files in the cloud. Call it paranoia, but identity theft is on the rise and I just don’t want to risk any of that. In any case, we probably don’t have to look at our most sensitive data through the cloud on a 24/7 basis.

    My advice is to keep only those files which you need to access frequently and avoid putting up documents containing passwords for your various online accounts or personally identifiable information (PII) such as your credit card numbers, national identification number, home address, etc.

    If you must include these information in your files, make sure to encrypt them before you upload.

    3. Use Cloud Services That Encrypt Your Data

    One of the easiest way to safeguard your privacy when using cloud storage services is to look for one that offers local encryption for your data. This provides an additional layer of security since decryption will be required before you can be granted access to the data.

    Otherwise known as the zero-knowledge proof in cryptographic, this method will even protect your data against the service providers and administrators themselves. While keeping data encrypted in the cloud may be good enough, it would be even better if the cloud service also ensures encryption during the uploading and downloading phases. This can be done using military-grade Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) (256 bits), which services like DrivePop adopts.

    With the additional step of encrypting and decrypting your data, you may realise that syncing your files with your cloud drive takes a little while. That said, this is a necessary pain to go through if you want the documents to be accessible to you and you alone.

    4. Encrypt the Data Before Putting it on The Cloud

    If you choose not to use a cloud service that will help you encrypt the data, you can use a third-party tool to perform the encryption. All you got to do is download a cloud-protection app which will allow you to apply passwords and generate secret key sequences to your files before you actually upload them to the cloud.

    Even if you’re already opting for an encrypted cloud service, it wouldn’t hurt to go through a preliminary round of encryption for your files to get a little extra assurance.

    5. Read the Small Print of the Cloud Service Provider

    Besides storing your data, some cloud services allow you to share your photos and files with others. This definitely sounds appealing, but sometimes these services come with a catch. There might be some fine print that they don’t advertise but will stuff in their Terms of Service (TOS) to make it legitimate.

    For instance, back in 2011, Twitpic wrote in their TOS that sharing your pictures on their service gives them the right to ‘use or distribute‘ the pictures. They later apologised but further clarified that they can distribute the securing-cloud-data on Twitpic and affiliated partners, although the final copyright still belongs to the owner of the photographs.

    While not exactly a dedicated cloud storage service, Twitpic puts forward a good case for why you should be cognisant of what to expect from your cloud provider, especially with regard to their security and privacy policies. Try to research online to find out if there are any bad reviews or caveats that you should be wary about. This will put you in a more informed position before you go ahead with their services.

    6. Use a Strong Password / Apply Two-Step Verification

    As the first line of defence against malicious hackers out there, you had better be sure that your password can stand a hacking or cracking attempt. There are tons of tips on the Internet on what makes for a good password. Aside from going for a strong and unique password, make sure to change it frequently and not repeat it across all other online accounts you have.

    Alternatively, you may go for the much more secure two-step verification for your login if your cloud service offers the option. In the case for Google Drive, users have to login to their Google account first in order to use the cloud storage service. Two-step verification can be turned on for Google accounts – a verification code sent to the mobile phone gives the much needed added security on top of just your password to be able to access your cloud data.

    7. Be Wary of Your Online Behaviour

    Sometimes, the security of your cloud data depends on what you do online, especially on public computers or connections. When using a public computer, do you opt to not save your password, and ensure that you logged out of your account after you are done? Saving your password and leaving it logged in exposes you to the risk of strangers accessing your data.

    via http://pixabay.com/en/computer-computers-keyboard-338968/

    Do you tend to connect open and unsecured Wi-Fi hotspots in public places to log in to your cloud account? Such connections are typically unencrypted, which means that whatever you do while connected can be ‘sniffed‘ by a hacker on the same network. This can even include your login credentials for your cloud account! Just check out this useful article from NoWiresSecurity depicting what these hackers can actually see from unencrypted wireless networks.

    8. Protect Your System with Anti-Virus & Anti-Spy

    You may be using a secure cloud service provider which you absolutely trust, but sometimes the weakest link happens to be the computer system you’re logging in from. Without proper protection for your system, you expose yourself to bugs and viruses that provide penetration points for hackers to access your account.

    Take for instance the presence of a Keylogger Trojan which attempts to track all your keystrokes. By embedding this malicious software to seemingly legitimate files, hackers will be able to get hold of your user ID and password if your system isn’t well protected enough to detect it, and if the login isn’t secured and encrypted.





    hongkiat.com

    The Wide World of Cloud Computing

    Cloud computing is the new buzzword phrasing that seems to be popping up in every business/IT model these days. Because of this, companies are beginning to make the “alternative direction” of cloud computing into the conventional choice of how to run their IT and computing system.

    The Wide World of Cloud Computing

    This article is going to take a beginner’s look at the world of cloud computing and how it may positively affect you or your company’s needs in the new world of the cloud.

    A Brief History Lesson

    Perhaps we should back up a bit. Whereas previously we referred to the cloud computing as new, the concept of this “new” idea actually began back in the 1950s with university and larger corporation usage of large-scale mainframe computers. These mainframes were accessed through “static terminals” that had communication properties but no internal processing capabilities. Then in the beginning of the 1960’s John McCarthy furthered the idea of what he called, “computer utility.” He envisioned that using computers would be part of a public utility; “…Just as the telephone system is a public utility.”

    Other experts often point to the “intergalactic computer network” envisioned by J.C.R. Licklider, one of the developers of ARPANET (Advanced Research Projects Agency Network), who, in 1969, wanted everyone on earth to be able to access programs and data at any site, from anywhere.

    With the advent of the internet and its rise in popularity to the point of nearly everyone carrying it with them on their phones, the phenomenon of cloud computing has taken rise. In 1999, Salesforce.com started delivering enterprise applications over a simple website, which in turn led to more and more software firms offering their apps over the internet. Amazon Web Services followed suit, and in 2002, offered cloud storage, computation, and human intelligence with the Amazon Mechanical Turk. Four years later, they started up their Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) providing users the ability to rent computers on which they run their own applications.

    In 2009, the most recent event happened, as Web 2.0 began. Different internet-based companies began to offer browser-based applications. One example of this is Google Apps.

    What Is It?

    So what is cloud computing? Basically, the idea has stayed the same since the 1950s, with a few changes in technology. Perhaps the easiest way to explain what cloud computing is, is by giving an example of a corporation’s IT department.

    In a corporation, each employee needs the right tools in order to accomplish their job. The IT department makes sure that those employees all have a computer that contains the right hardware and software needed for them to achieve this. On top of that, those employees need all the different software licenses in order to use the different software programs, and so on. These programs need licensure or different types of approval to run. Whenever a new employee is hired, you must then re-purchase a new license or software program so that the new employee can also use those same programs. This is where cloud computing comes in to make life easier for those corporations and employees. Cloud computing makes it that everyone can use the same programs without having to buy new software.

    How Does It Work?

    The idea of how cloud computing works in the aforementioned situation is very simple: instead of having to buy and install the software for each new employee, you would only need to load one application on the numerous computers being used. This application allows users to log into a web-based service that hosts all the different software and programs that each employee may need to accomplish their tasks.

    The software and/or programs that are used are no longer loaded onto every individual’s computer, but rather onto a larger data storage system creating the “cloud.” Employees are able to access this data through a network connection or by simply connecting through the internet. Basically, everything is stored and/or accessed over the internet as opposed to your computer’s hard drive.

    There are four different types of cloud offerings and those are infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS), and business process as a service (BPaaS). Each of these services is built on top of each other.

    Just like the example of a corporation, cloud computing can work for different individuals in a variety of ways. If you have ever used a web-based e-mail service like Hotmail or Gmail, you’ve been taking advantage of cloud computing. Your computer isn’t running an e-mail program, but rather you’re accessing that e-mail program through your internet.

    The Growth of Cloud Computing

    Cloud computing has become a way for IT to add different capabilities with regards to the end-user experience and increase capacity, all in real time over the internet. With that being said, cloud computing is still at an early stage in development and many providers have begun offering different services through the cloud that vary from system to system.

    Other programs you may have used are taking advantage of the cloud system as well. Netflix, Apple, Dropbox, and Amazon are a few of the major companies that are invested in the cloud system allowing you to take their services and products with you wherever you have internet capabilities… i.e.: your smart phone.

    Businesses are jumping on the cloud computing bandwagon as well. It is estimated that 69% of companies who currently have a budget for the cloud plan to increase their spending this year. That same study states that the market for cloud computing will continue to increase an additional 36% each year through 2016. Most companies are using four different areas of cloud computing for their businesses and research shows that all of these numbers will steadily increase each year as technology continues to grow and expand leaving the cloud as the only option.

    The Pros & Cons of the Cloud World

    The main positive aspect of using cloud computing is the accessibility and somewhat ease of use. Through the cloud, you can access used applications and data from anywhere at any time as long as you are linked to the internet. Using a cloud system can also save you money in buying various software and hardware. Corporations are able to minimize IT support due to streamlining their hardware and having less operating systems. Also, since the back end of the cloud system is usually a higher powered grid computing system, speed can be a factor. Something that would have taken a long time to previously process would now take a substantial less time to compute.

    With regards to backup and recovery, the process is much easier as the data is now stored on the cloud as opposed to being hosted on a physical device. Because of this reason, deployment of programs and integrating new programs are also faster and easier. Your company can pick and choose which services and/or applications that would be most beneficial to them, rather than having to pick everything in a larger package deal. Should you want more or less programs, hard drive space no longer becomes a concern, as the storage capacity in a cloud system can be almost unlimited in its range. This adds to the reduction of any IT costs that could come from an update or the purchase of new hardware.

    The cloud is also environmentally friendly due to the amount of resources it takes to compute, meaning less energy being spent. When the cloud servers are not being used, there is typically some sort of scale down by the server, freeing up the energy and resources being used.

    A last advantage to cloud computing is its ease of use. Most cloud applications will be simpler to run as most of the public may already be used to running an example of it. For example, Gmail is a cloud application that many users may already have experience with and find quite simple to control and use in their day to day lives.

    On the other end of the spectrum, the biggest concerns in cloud computing are privacy, data loss, and security. If a cloud database isn’t designed properly, hackers wouldn’t necessarily have to go through all the walls and channels to be able to access numerous clients’ data. Data loss is the number two threat with regards to using the cloud. You may lose some flexibility and control that you are accustomed to with a switch over to a cloud network as everything is run through remote, and most of your hardware and software could be running remotely as well.

    One other disadvantage with regards to security in the cloud world is the idea of privacy. A company that that uses a remote cloud infrastructure is basically sending away any private data and information that could be sensitive and/or confidential. Again, if the cloud provider has less than reliable security, those same companies may see this sensitive information compromised, including passwords leaked and large amounts of data loss.

    Lastly, since cloud computing is largely if not wholly dependent on internet access, if a company were to have any network outages or connectivity issues, your cloud setup would become useless. While it is true that all systems may face a problem or connection issue from time to time, this is another downside to look at. If you’ve chosen a cloud provider that isn’t up to par or if a disaster hits, because you now have your entire system centrally located, you could lose everything.

    The End?

    There are those who are still suspect of cloud computing. Many believe that since we have worked directly from the local hard drive for the past few decades that we should continue in this manner. Cloud computing may not be as fast and it may not be worth the cost of local storage and access. Since different media companies now control the access to whatever you are using cloud services for, many are concerned that putting all your faith in that company’s access could cost you in the long run.

    Companies also continue to find out different ways to charge for cloud access, whether that is metering your service or the bandwidth you’ve used. Customers of cloud sites have also expressed concerns over intellectual property and who owns the data that is stored online. For example, can the photos you’ve shared on Facebook be used as part of the company’s marketing scheme? Who owns the photos you’re sharing on their website?

    There are many different ways that cloud computing can affect your company and even your home computer usage as it continues to grow in popularity and through ideas of use. It seems that cloud computing is falling away from being just a trend and is now just a part of the new normal.

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