For more background information and to read where I'm coming from, see my previous post, meditations on minimalism.
I'm an old school person. For years, I always accomplished my things the old school way. Using a desktop system, preferring local-first file storage, organizing and curating these files by hand, sometimes painstakingly. This never meant that I denounce newer technologies, but I always put them to the back of the queue, or limited their use to the bare minimum. Over the years, this created a centralized file silo at home, with backups. I've built systems, and an ecosystem of applications to handle these files, their organization and other marginalia.
Life was good.
However, due to changing life circumstances, I have to change this storage system, for good. I won't have a place to put my silo for some unknown time, won't have the same time frame to organize it, and would need to access these files from more places to get things done.
Enter, cloud storage.
Cloud storage is nothing new, and I'm no stranger to it. To be honest, I'm using it for quite some time via Dropbox and Google Drive. While their support on the platform I prefer (Linux) is not first class, they're perfectly usable, and works reliably, at least. As a result, some of my files are living there, to enable mobility, collaboration and sharing. However, as I've said, the number of files living in these spaces were minimal.
The reasons for this were numerous. First, trusting a remote server you don’t control with your files was hard. Then, having almost no bandwidth for uploading files made the service not practical. Lastly, but most importantly, I always had access to my silo, and the time to work there everyday.
But, I missed the signs.
First, I was using the tech already. I had accounts with two leading providers, and was paying one of them a good amount of money for ample storage and other features. Some merchants I was using were delivering my files there directly, automatically organizing them during the process.
Second, the problems I mentioned was disappearing slowly. Mobile internet became affordable, and I was able to afford the top tier service. Home network was steadily becoming faster, incl. upload speeds. I was backing-up that space every day automatically, and never lost a file in any of these providers.
Lastly, my workflows were integrating to these services. Some devices I got had their own cloud service, and many apps were seamlessly integrating over it. I started collaborating over cloud. Moreover, I was using these services more and more to integrate different systems and platforms, and make them work together.
In short, I migrated to cloud without even knowing it, but still using my old ways hid that truth from myself.
As a result, in the light of the recent changes in my life, I decided to move to and trust cloud even more extensively and knowingly, but with more robust backup procedures.
At the same time, I realized that moving to a single place which can be accessed everywhere makes the data much more visible, easier to organize and pare down. This allows me to build systems around that storage system which automates other tasks, making my life much easier.
While the cloud is "someone else's computer", trusting that someone while being prepared brings many advantages, at first blush. I'll see how it feels as I integrate and use it more.
Let's see what moving to cloud going to bring next.