Sunday morning tech musings.

Borepatch links to one of the latest Downfall parodies, which brought to mind this bit from The Register:

Trust the cloud with my PRECIOUS? You gotta be joking

Violated, deleted… put your data up there and bad sh*t HAPPENS

That’s always been my take on cloud computing as well, albeit perhaps for different reasons. My biggest gripe with the whole cloud computing bit is that it requires an Internet connection. Granted, most of the time I’ve had high-speed  Internet the connection’s been pretty reliable, but there are still issues with certain things.

What comes to mind for me is streaming audio. One of the myriad benefits of cloud computing I’ve seen touted here and there is the fact that you can save all your music on a cloud service and stream it from there. Pretty cool, right? Yeah — when it works. Streaming audio takes up bandwidth, and with certain forms of high-speed Internet (i.e., cable), the more users are on the system the slower it goes — and there are gonna be times here and there when either the Internet connection or the cloud service is going to be down, and what are you gonna do then?

And then there’s the issue of not having a traditional connection and relying on your mobile network. That works pretty well too…but what happens when you reach your data limit with your provider and your speed gets throttled back? Streaming audio comes to a screaming halt, that’s what. And then you’re stuck there in silence.

No, for me local storage is where it’s at and very well will probably always be. Sure, it’s cool if people have an iPhone and can stream their 25,000 songs from iTunes Match on those long-ass road trips…but when they’re in an area that has, say, 2G service, or iCloud’s down, or they’ve reached their data limit, my iPod classic will still be going.

Speaking of the iPod vs. the phone…I don’t know if I mentioned it before other than this retroactive entry, but when we were staying at a certain San Antonio-area hotel, the housekeeping staff jacked my iPod classic, and I was only recently able to replace it (Amazon gift card from my folks FTW!). All my music was on my computer, and I was able to get it on my phone…but I still found the whole thing rather cumbersome for a couple of reasons:

1. It seemed to slow down the phone quite a bit when it was running. I have an Android and I was using the DoubleTwist app/program. Worked fine, but it was still annoying in several small ways, like when I was listening to an album where the ends of certain songs served as intros to the next song (think “Back in the Village”/Powerslave” on Iron Maiden’s Powerslave, or “Anarchy-X/Revolution Calling” on Queensryche’s Operation: Mindcrime), there would always be this small but annoying gap between the songs.

2. Not all my music would fit, so I had to go through my iTunes library and pick and choose what I wanted to put it on there. And stuff purchased from iTunes was a no-go, due to the fact that I had an Android. And even if I could have gotten an iPhone, there are still the issues with storage and sluggish performance that one very well might have to contend with.

3. What I didn’t want to sync to the phone with DoubleTwist, I had to manually delete from it. With about 1600 songs, that was a real pain in the ass. And when I imported a new cd to the computer, it would have to have been further manually imported from iTunes to DoubleTwist. Symphony X’s Paradise Lost, Queensryche’s Operation: Livecrime, and Corb Lund’s Cabin Fever never made it to the phone because of that.

I suppose some might call me hypocritical or whatnot because one of my favorite things to do on the phone is listen to Sirius, and I would concede that point but for the fact that I don’t think I should have to pay to listen to music that I bought outright. With local storage and backups, it’s all in your control, and free to boot. That is not so with cloud computing.

And then there are the issues of making your phone your go-to device for everything — more wear and tear, battery life, and all that good stuff. What to do when you drain the battery with games and music and need to make a phone call? I don’t know. Maybe I am reaching here. Maybe I just missed the hell out of my iPod after it was stolen. But that’s just what I think…

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2 Responses to “Sunday morning tech musings.”

  1. Borepatch Says:

    I don’t buy music from iTunes. I bought some back in 2003 or so, but between moving different computers and iDevices, they’re no longer authorized and so the DRM prevents me from listening to them. No sense wasting more cash there, especially when Amazon lets you download MP3.

    Dunno, maybe iTunes lets you do that now, too. Why bother checking?

    But I like to buy music on CD, because you have a built-in backup. Used CDs are typically around $5, so it’s a deal.

  2. southtexaspistolero Says:

    But I like to buy music on CD, because you have a built-in backup.

    Yeah, I do too. I actually had only one album out of about 100 or so that I had gotten off iTunes (a 2-cd set, actually) because I couldn’t find it in the stores. All the rest were ripped from cds.

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