It used to be a bad thing to have your head in the clouds. Not anymore. These days "the cloud" is exactly where tech companies like Google want you and your business to be. Working in the cloud means no more software downloads, but instead, using online applications like Google Docs or their very popular webmail client, Gmail. But yesterday, Gmail went offline for around two hours, sidelining productivity and prompting apocalyptic imagery among the digerati. In the wake of yesterday's Gmail blackout, we speak with John Abell, New York bureau chief of Wired.com, to learn about the nuts, bolts, merits and pitfalls of separating our computers from our data.
"I think anyone in the business would say: in a cage fight, would Google and Microsoft be equal partners in the reliability contest? You'd have a laughing match. Everything, to some extent, is unreliable."
—John Abell, New York bureau chief of Wired.com, on the risks of "cloud computing".