Cloud computing has not been around that long. Do we know how it will shape our future? Where will it take us in terms of data storage and learning?

Watch the following YouTube from 1997 video where Steve Jobs explains his vision of cloud computing and then add a comment that makes a prediction of how the cloud will affect you in your education, in your teaching or in your organization. Feel free to comment and discuss what others predict and how they vision the future of cloud-based learning, being sure to build on their ideas. Check back regularly throughout the week to respond to comments and continually share your thoughts and ideas.


This activity concludes our week focused on Cloud-Based Learning Management Systems. We hope that you have enjoyed learning through our site and can vision where cloud computing might fit for you.


Video Reference:
JacobsFrederic. (2011, June 5).  Steve about cloud computing in 1997. Retrieved on June 4, 2012 from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Or7zaUaP-J8
Ronna
6/18/2012 11:48:43

My prediction is essentially the same as Steve Jobs' reality in 1997: I will see the day when I am not required to cart around a memory stick or worry about my computer crashing (knock on wood it lasts for 6 more months, lol). All of my cherished information will be stored in the cloud. I will find it difficult NOT to physically protect those all important exams, though. But I suppose those will be administered online as well...

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Jon
6/18/2012 20:31:12

I agree with you Ronna, there is that worry of "protection" of information. I know within D2L for example, exams are delivered and other quiz like features.
You hope that the information is sealed safely and that only those who have access are only the ones who can access. There is a great deal of hope placed in the external sources that the information taken care.

Thanks for commenting,

Jon

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Bridget
6/24/2012 06:24:24

Hi Ronna,
With every new technology, the greatest fear appears security. I think back to when we began to be able to pay bills over the phone and many people were not willing to use it because they did not trust the security.
Now, the convenience outweighs the security worries. They are always there but we do not concern ourselves about them as much.
I have not carried a USB stick for 2-3 years since I started using Dropbox but I am the first to admit that I don't put anything in my folder that I wouldn't want leaked. As you mention, our biggest worry in education is leaking exams, but nothing comes from this really except inconvenience. I look forward to the day that they are all done (and corrected) online.
I have never have my identity stolen of anything like that....if so I might sign a different tune.
Bridget

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Shawn
6/18/2012 19:06:13

Cloud learning will continue to grow as more and more learners become aware. It is also hoped that cloud will satisfy the requirements, including cost, performance, security, governance etc. It is predicted that Cloud will be one of the best solutions for users in the classroom and organizations without much confusion as it is big on organization, data storage and collaboration. I have been using cloud learning in my MET journey and it has been fantastic so far in terms of sharing learning space, creating documents, embedding media files etc. I find myself using it each time I am presented with a task including group work activities, where ever I am I am able to use it on the go(No more excuses). Cloud learning indeed engages its user by providing learning, anywhere, anytime. I have not used cloud learning with my K-12 students as yet; however I am excited to add this in my unit plans for the new academic year so my students too can experience cloud in education.

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Dennis Pratt
6/18/2012 19:13:16

Shawn;

I think many of us are in the same situation. We use the cloud in our own lives but may not teach much with it. I see it as one of the greatest movements in education right now. Students can have access to their course material on the go, just as you said, no excuses. It will save schools money and server space as well as help organize courses and teachers. I am also very excited about finding ways to incorporate cloud computing in my classrooms.

Dennis

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Bridget
6/24/2012 06:40:04

Hi Shawn,
We use a Student Learning Management System (SLMS?).....system called Vercross at our school which allows teachers to post assignments, homework, tests, websites and any material which automatically they want students to have access to. Dates are add to a central calendar. As you state, they have access to their course material "on the go, no excuses". It makes 100% sense but the excuses still come. What we have found is that although they do have access, if they don't look, they don't find and some have actual used "I didn't see it" as an excuse. I wonder if it is lack of desire, lack of organization or that they are bombarded with a lot of information and need to learn how to filter. To put it in perspective, they are 12-13 year olds.
Bridget

Helen DW
6/19/2012 20:52:22

One element to cloud computing that was a huge problem in 1997 was infrastructure for networking - access, speed, bandwidth. For many around the world, this is still an issue. Costs, speed of connectivity, security of wireless systems, and access are not yet universally available, affordable or provided. Until issues such as these are examined and resolved for Canadians and others around the world, cloud computing will continue to be out of reach for many global citizens.

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Tim
6/19/2012 21:41:06

Hi Helen:

It is interesting to note that when cloud computing is used in its deepest sense as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), then client computers (called thin clients) actually require less speed and bandwidth. Only keyboard data input is uploaded and only video data is downloaded. All storage of media data stays on the cloud computer. The client computer simply needs to run a web accessing program and does no processing beyond this. This allows older and slower computers to still be effective access points. Cloud computing viewed in this way is seen as increasing access and a way of reducing the digital divide.

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David McInnes
6/24/2012 01:20:00

Tim,
You bring up a good point, when you talk about levelling the playing field of the thin client. It makes me think of the "One Laptop per Child" program where they provide basic machines to students in developing countries. Of course we look to the connectedness of a region for this to be a viable option, but we have seen recently that some developing countries' wireless infrastructure is actually superior to ours in Canada's far north.
David

Marie-France Hétu
6/20/2012 19:24:36

Hello Helen,

I think you are right that even with cloud computing there is an evident digital divide. I think perhaps these super 'satellites' that they are launching may someday make wireless systems universally accessible to even the most remote areas - at least I hope so.
Think for a moment when cellular phones first came out, few people had them, and often you could not use your cell phone in certain countries because many did not have the technological infrastructures. Now you can use your cell phone everywhere (almost) and anytime . . . I think cloud computing will eventually become the same, and sooner than we think.

Marie-France

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Chelsea Woods
6/21/2012 08:39:54

Helen, I remember when I first started using Google Docs 5 years ago there were often problems with access (sometimes just speed, sometimes not being able to get access at all) so that although I loved the idea of real-time shared document editing, it wasn't reliable enough to make it really work. I am amazed (although I guess 5 years is a long time:) at how much more reliable Google Doc access is now, to the point that it has become one of my main resources for my own docs (shared with my personal and work accounts) and for collaborative efforts. I agree that this is not access that is available to all (how many of us can afford to sit in Starbucks with our own devices enjoying 'free' internet access?) and that is an issue that I expect will be resolved over time. Thanks for your observation! Chelsea

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Marie-France Hétu
6/20/2012 19:19:08

These comments were made 15 years ago! It is amazing that already Steve Jobs was ablt to predict how important cloud computing would become. I'm sure that for most people hearing of this for of information storage in a cloud it sounde like hocus pocus.
I still remember first hearing of the internet as a virtual highway back in the day. . . and I remember thinking: " Are you nuts, how can a highway be virtual, and how could it ever be possible to communicate with anyone, anywhere, anytime in space?

My predictions are that eventually we won't need hardrives and all of our information will be stored in a cloud or another. I thinnk 'tablets' and other smaller electronic devices are going to replace computers (laptops and P.C.'s entirely in 5 to 10 years time and we won't need any physical space to store anything anymore.

Marie-France

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Dennis Pratt
6/20/2012 21:59:35

Marie-France;

That is an excellent (maybe bold) prediction as we are shifting that way in our teaching, learning, and personal lives. We are becoming more and more connected to the web all the time. Our homes are becoming connected to the point that we can turn up the heat or turn off the oven form anywhere in the world. Amazing, isn't it?

Dennis

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Marie-France Hétu
6/24/2012 08:42:00

Hi Dennis,

I agree that technology advancement is amazing, but it is also scary.

The odd time that we don't have electricity here, it is amazing how much I miss it . . . I can't do a wash, start the dish washer, cook, watch t.v. or use my beloved computer! Although I am very much in tune with nature and love the outdoors and gardening and such, when there is no electricity I panic . . . I somehow feel anxious if I can't do my tasks for x number of hours.

The same goes for my computer, the few times I have been without a computer or the server has been down I have felt the same way - somehow I just can't be without this tool for very long. It is scary to think that I am so 'hooked' to technology, to the point that I feel something is missing when I'm without.

Marie-France

Chelsea Woods
6/21/2012 08:57:06

Cloud based resources have been creeping in rapidly, and I use so many of them that I have 47 usernames and passwords stored away (in the cloud) so I can remember how to get in to all these amazing resources.

One challenge to cloud based computing is remembering which resource I used to share information (did I put the video on YouTube -and which YouTube account!- or was it on Vimeo, or did I post it straight to a blog -and which one!- did I take my notes on Evernote or in a Google Doc, or -gasp- did I foolishly store it on my work hard drive so I can't access it from home! Being organized myself is one solution, but this is a challenge due to the amount of information I generate and share :) and because I want to always be trying new things, and that means having information stored in different places. Solution (and my prediction for the future): single sign in, and somehow connecting all the information stored in different cloud based resources so I can search all my "stuff" from one search engine.

In the old days (circa 2000) we did the shift from that old Apple format for documents to .doc. I remember lots of confused teachers missing the boat on transferring their files over. In the past 12 years we've made great progress (I use 'we' liberally :) in making digital media of different formats viewable across platforms, and this focus will need to continue as we populate the cloud.

The shift to cloud based has been gradual for me, and I almost didn't notice it happening, but between my iPhone, iPad, Mac, work PC and borrowed devices, I can't imagine going back to my data being stored in one physical space for which I am responsible. The potential for sharing and collaboration and 'any information any time any device' makes the old days of single copy, space-locked versions of files seem impossibly dysfunctional for the collaborative environment in which we live.

Thanks for the amazing week of thinking and learning, Team Cloud!
Chelsea

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Tim
6/21/2012 16:38:42

Chelsea:

Thanks for your kudos on the presentation. You draw an interesting picture of the web of interconnected tools we can and do use in the cloud. I think your prediction of a single sign-in is a good one. The increasing availability of high-quality, open-source tools like Moodle, Linux and Mahara are forcing more and more tech industries to consider the "interoperability" of the tools they create. This means that tools doing a variety of tasks can work seamlessly. I see this as the direction of LMSs in the next while where the integration of various Web 2.0 tools will become easier, allowing a teacher to assess student products from these various tools in one system.

Tim

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Valerie Wells
6/21/2012 13:21:39

Like Marie France I think it is amazing that Steve Jobs said this 15 years ago. My prediction is that cloud computing will have a huge impact on education. E books instead of text books, access to just in time professional learning anytime anywhere, the ability to access data, files from any place with any device will change the face of education as we knew it. It is an exciting time to be in the field of education and be apart of the many changes that are happening.

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May Bacon
6/21/2012 15:02:26

I'll join all of you in amazement over Steve Jobs' brilliant predictions. Not being a computer or technological design whiz, it's hard to take my personal predictions beyond his. However, I hope that we come to a point where we can access our information with 'shell' machines (keyboards, mice, screens, but no hard drives). Personally, I'm not ready for everything to be cloud-based, especially in terms of the sentimental items I store on my computer (mostly photos), that I wouldn't want to lose because the cloud system failed (or its security was compromised in some way). However, that's supposing that my personal backups are 'safer' than those of cloud computer, and I strongly doubt that they are.

If cloud computing gradually becomes the mainstream, we'll be able to make better use of ebooks and work increasingly with peers across the globe (something I never did before the MET program, but thoroughly enjoy).

As mentioned on previous pages, one major obstacle to true cloud computing is intellectual property for certain businesses. 'Pooling' a company's documents may never be possible if they fear cloud security breaches (one of the reasons my dad's employers run a close in-house network rather than using cloud resources). For that reason I believe cloud computing will become mainstream, but there will still be a market for wires devices and completely closed networks.

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Sherman
6/21/2012 17:39:24

Hi May,

I agree with you completely that there will still be a market for wired devices and closed networks. Aside from personal information, corporation will likely stick with closed networks due to the sensitivity of information they possess. Although security is available to cloud too, but in general, it is not enough for information that is worth millions of dollars in our pocket or in our heart. It will take a little longer before we would get there.

With that said, I am still sad that Steve Job is gone. He amazes me.

Sherman

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Deborah
6/21/2012 18:35:54

Hi May,
I share your hesitation at putting personal information on the cloud. I'm just not convinced that the security to protect the information is sufficient yet. I keep hearing too many horror stories about hacks to be comfortable putting all my information on it just yet.

Deborah

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Lisa Allen
6/21/2012 22:59:28

I'll echo everyone here that the cloud is the way of the future. I agree with Steve Jobs and am intrigued - wondering how our society will overcome issues with privacy and security of sensitive information being stored out there in cyberspace. This will certainly be an interesting trend to watch and follow.

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gillian
6/22/2012 11:21:35

Once again, I was unable to view your video. I will try again later and hopefully it will work next time.

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Dennis
6/22/2012 22:42:29

Gillian;

Here is the URL to copy and paste into your browser.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Or7zaUaP-J8&feature=player_embedded

Enjoy!

Dennis

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Greg
6/22/2012 13:34:58

As a business education and computer teacher I think cloud has the potential to dramatically change the way we teach and the programs we teach our students. If we no longer had to worry about the size of various software programs and how much space they take up we could expose students to more programs. If we no longer had to have IT specialist from the district come in and install programs and trouble shoot the district could save money which could be spent on additional teaching resources, current software program and teacher training. It would also be incredible if student’s assignments were located on an external server so they could access their school based assignment from offsite and could work on their projects outside of school (public library, community centre, home). Another problem that likely would be solved is that there would no longer need to be a backup of files at the school and so computers would probably faster.

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Dennis
6/22/2012 22:45:46

Greg;

As I teach computers I run into many of the problems you just mentioned. Even having all the computers in the school running the same version of a program causes problems. Cloud computing can solve many of our local IT and server issues.

Dennis

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Dave
6/22/2012 22:03:43

I love the idea of cloud computing and the fact that I can access information from anywhere, without having to cart around a hard format memory.
I think we are going to see more and more providers charging for data packages as more information and people exist in cloud computing.
Will the increased amount of cloud computing reshape privacy laws?

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Danielle
6/23/2012 08:42:16

My vision for cloud computing would involve access to learning and communication technologies for everyone, regardless of geographic location or income status. The massive network of computer servers that run the cloud is incredibly expensive costing companies millions of dollars in electricity and obviously having a detrimental impact on the environment. Since the explosion of social networking, the digital revolution has data centers opening up around the world, massive amounts of power is being consumed and companies, such as Google, are now looking for ways to create greener solutions to their massive server issues. There are already data centers being designed and built within the cool temperatures of Norway's fjords, in subarctic stations, in space (as Marie-France mentions above) and floating data centers that use the energy produced by waves for power and the temperature of the ocean's water to cool. Cloud computing places little demand on the machine from which it is accessed. Therefore, with the help of renewable energy, data centers may be optimized for power efficiency making them available to the developing world, serving more people, operating at higher utilization rates, and allowing the world to collaborate and share knowledge without worrying about peak loads and over allocation of resources.

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Tim
6/23/2012 15:10:48

Hi Danielle

Thanks for bringing up the ecological or environment aspect of cloud computing. You present some interesting ideas of how cloud computing can become ecologically efficient. This was one of the aspects I had looked at in preparing this presentation. There seems to be a growing body of research in this area and makes for a fascinating study. Once of the articles I looked at was called "Building Environmentally Sustainable Information Services: A Green IS Research Agenda" by Gobinda Chowdhury in the JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR INFORMATION SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY—April 2012 and available through the eproxy service at the UBC library. The concluding statement of the article is "A cloud-based green IS can be the most appropriate
economically and environmentally sustainable means for
promoting education and research in the modern digital age. (p. 644)" This supports many of the predictions made here of a move to the cloud.

Tim

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Meggan
6/24/2012 11:41:29

As most people have said, I feel that the cloud will become the predominant storage solution for media in the future, possibly in the very near future.

I can remember watching someone use a debit card at the grocery store and thinking how crazy they were to be accessing their bank account straight from the cash register - at the time the idea seemed insecure and rather ridiculous. Now, I use debit all the time without a second thought. As with this, cloud based learning seemed to be an intimidating prospect with security risks and other problems when Jobs suggested it in 1997, but now it seems reasonable and even desirable!

As with many things I think the current fears over the ownership of intellectual property, etc. will soon disappear as people become more accustomed to the idea and discover the ways in which it can better facilitate so many things, both in the classroom and out.
Thanks,
-Meggan

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Donna
6/24/2012 21:59:02

It really would be an ideal world if we could walk around with our devices and never again have to worry about storing information on our own machines and having our computers crash. However, would we all be wanting to make back-ups, just in case the cloud server got hacked into (and we all know that this can happen). If I remember correctly, when computers first started taking over, we all thought that storing hard copies and shuffling papers would eventually be eliminated. However, I have noticed the opposite. There still seems to be as much paper copies of documents floating around out there because I think we always want to have that "back-up" just in case the computer crashes. Therefore with the cloud system, will we have hard copy back-ups as well as back ups on our own computers? We will possibly be tripling the load. Curious!

Donna

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Dennis Pratt
6/24/2012 23:24:39

Donna;

At my school I think we are at the tipping point in regards to paper usage. We have been strongly encouraged to find alternate ways to deliver content than photocopied paper. We are beginning to see our photocopy number drop as we get more online tools. Our students are beginning to blog reflections and email assignments to teachers. We are OK with marking work in computer folders and on-screen.

One of the nice things about cloud computing is that the information is stored in numerous places so if one "server" goes down you still have access to the information you need.

You are absolutely right, though. We use much more paper in the computer era than ever before.

Corning out out an ad that predicts a day in 2020. It can be found at

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OptqxagZDfM

The video show how the cloud may impact our lives and there is not much paper involved.

Dennis

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Dennis
6/25/2012 21:29:38

Conclusion

We appreciate the predictions posted throughout the week in regards to cloud-based learning in the future. In 1997, Steve Jobs laid out his ideas behind using the cloud and we are now beginning to see them come to fruition. Online banking and shopping has exploded over the last few years as people look for specialty items or the best deals available. Online group work has become easier through the cloud, especially in our MET journey, as well as with our students. They have access to the information they need wherever they go, “no excuses.” As wireless internet is installed in our schools, business and recreation areas we are constantly connected to the cloud, making it a bank of information where we can withdraw at any time in any space, without the need to store anything on one local device. Backing up our data is beginning to become a thing of the past, as it is stored in a numerous places with constant access to it.

The cloud is helping us become more organized with the need for cloud-based programs that help with cloud organization. Our world has us meeting more people and going more places than ever before, with access to the information superhighway we call the internet. Our books are not bough in physical stores, but can remain online for reading on any device. Even though there are some drawbacks to cloud computing they seem to not scare users away from the constant access to information that they want and find convenient in their lives. It will be interesting to see just how much our lives are impacted by this emerging market of cloud-based learning.

Tim, Leonora, Jon, Kenton and Dennis

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1/4/2013 08:13:09

Cloud hosting has gained a stronger standing in the cloud computing world thanks to the active participation of enterprises in recent years. The cloud’s success lies in its potential to significantly impact IT costs through direct costs savings, save time in development and deployment, and to save resource allocation overheads.

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3/12/2015 04:44:44

Does the cloud prediction is manipulated by segment wise or term wise. I gonna do an article with entire list of cloud prediction. Can you help me out..

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cloud based learnig is looking awesome..

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