The cloud and I have a love/hate relationship. Not just the usual distrust of keeping my files - important papers! - on someone else’s computers, but also the enabling of digital hoarding. If I have terabytes of space available, maybe I should fill that up? Oh, and in case Microsoft ever suffers a massive OneDrive failure, I should probably have everything synced to a Google Drive. And don’t forget to sync over to pCloud, so I can have my encrypted storage! And I lot of folks I work with only use Dropbox, so I’ll need an account there for…

Since I have an iPhone (and two kids) I use iCloud to back up my copious photos. I collaborate with team members on Google Drive, OneDrive, and Dropbox. At one point I had a pCloud account but that contract is over and I don’t have access to that anymore. And then there’s the cloud storage that just doesn’t exist anymore. SugarSync probably purged me long ago, not to mention Ubunutu One (remember that?) and experiments I did with OwnCloud/NextCloud. *

Now I’ve moved on to testing what I’m calling the Portable Cloud. I have an encrypted USB drive on my keychain with my working documents on it. That gets synced with my Documents on my home computer nighly-ish, which syncs to an external drive that’s taken off-site and swapped weekly. Yes, it’s back to the bad old days of on-site/off-site backup swapping, but I still have ownership of every piece of hardware my data resides on.

Well, for a given definition of “my data”. I’m just as vulnerable as anyone else with a computer.

  • Whoops, I’m not counting GitHub am I? This does count as data, but since it’s static it’s also on my USB drive and can be brought up on another host at the drop of a hat. So I’m not that worried about it.
Eli Jones avatar
Eli Jones
Eli Jones is a spectulative fiction writer and data analyst living in the Cascadia Bioregion.