So if you're an Apple fan (or maybe just if you're alive and have media sources available to you (?)), you've no doubt heard some buzz about Apple's latest product launch. Actually, this falls more into the service than the product category, since it's all happening invisibly over the Internet (also known as a series of tubes).
From the sounds of it, it's a no-brainer: if you so choose, you can have all your music, photos, contacts, emails, calendar info, documents, etc. (just basically most things that most of us would be storing on our computers) saved in a giant cloud that follows you wherever you go. I mean, this is the technical explanation anyway. All you need do is follow a few simple steps and then bam! The next picture you take on your iPhone will be there on your MacBook by the time you get home.
Today's new Activity: Opting in to iCloud
I believe I've made it pretty clear how big a fan I am of Apple products (real original, right?). For the longest time I sort of resisted them (even though I did already have an iPod that I used almost daily), and I think that was mostly because I was just annoyed by all the hype. I mean how can you get so excited about a device that doesn't even allow you to RIGHT CLICK?!?!?! But over time I realized that this little right click issue was really the only thing standing between me and the full enjoyment of products that were in all other ways user-friendly, and without exception beautiful and overflowing with functionality. Also, the right click issue didn't even apply to most cases. It was just this thing in the back of my mind that had turned me against Apple--that and my annoyance with all the Mac fanatics.
Some time last year nearly every coworker of mine at the time bought the then-new iPhone 4 right when it came out. I laughed at their over-the-top Kool Aid consumption mentality. That was, until I held one of those phones in my hand and got a gander at the oh-so-clear screen display, the gorgeous simplicity of the user interface, the thousands and thousands of apps available to elevate the experience.
I think I waited a month or so before taking the plunge myself. After that I also purchased an iPod shuffle (stolen from my car last week...very uncool!) and bought my friend Kenneth's old MacBook.
In the course of a year I went from doubter to true Apple believer, and I suspect there won't be any going back any time soon. I'll admit I was even pretty saddened at the passing of Steve Jobs. And I saw plenty of criticism (on Facebook walls, for example) for people who reacted to that news as I did--images of starving children in Africa for whom nobody sheds a tear overlaid with shaming messages about "the state of humanity when..."
But I think a lot of people felt the way I did when Jobs died because the products he put out into the world were an everyday part of many of our lives. We could see, very clearly, how what he did in his life affected things we did in our own. It's rare that a person--and the company they created and fostered--completely overhauls multiple industries (a story I heard on APM's Marketplace put the number at 6, possibly 7--industries completely overhauled as a result of the influence of Apple under the direction of Steve Jobs). Maybe that's a scary state of affairs for some to contemplate, but for me (and cheesy as this will sound), all I can say is "thanks." I'm a fan.
So anyway, when I heard about iCloud I was pretty sure I'd want to take advantage of it Thinking of all the time I could have saved in uploading pictures from my phone to post on my blog had iCloud been available this past year makes the service appealing.
Turns out iCloud is easy enough to set up (though not as easy as most things Apple-related). Unfortunately I made a big mistake in updating my phone's software in order to enable iCloud, didn't backup properly, and lost all my phone's apps. It also got un-jailbroken in the process, but I knew in advance that would happen. It's funny that the step I took in order to made it possible for all those apps to be forever backed up without so much as a button click from me in the future was what caused me to lose them all in the process. Ok, so maybe that's not all that funny. But I didn't mind much. I looked at it as a chance for a clean slate. And I'm all in favor of clean slates these days.
There is still a lot for me to mess around with and figure out how to access where the big fluffy storage cloud is concerned, but there is a crap-ton of info available online. There are also a number of tutorials set to cheesy, porn-sounding music up on Youtube, but you have to be careful in checking the upload dates as some of them were tutorials for iCloud's hypothetical or beta versions, neither of which will look in any way familiar or be relevant to today's user.
Have fun storing, y'all.