Lesson video

In progress...


Hey there, and welcome back to computer systems. I'm Mac, your computing teacher for this unit.

In this lesson, we're going to talk about how to select a storage device for a given use.

Like usual, you're going to need a pen and a notepad to take notes while you're learning.

I'd also like you to remove all distractions from around you.

This includes your mobile phone.

You already know by now.

But I've got my water bottle here, and I want you to make sure you've got some refreshment if you need it throughout this lesson.

If you want to pause the video here and get everything you need, I'll be here when you get back.

In this lesson, you're going to apply your knowledge of storage devices to select a storage device for a given use.

We're then going to explain the need for cloud storage and describe a few of the impacts of cloud storage.

Alright, let's get going.

So just as a reminder, when we're comparing storage devices, we need to consider these factors.

The capacity, how much you can store.

The cost usually taken in per gigabyte? How much does it cost for a single gigabyte of data on that storage medium? The access speed, how quickly can things be read and written? The durability, how well it withstands dropping or how much you have to take care of it without damaging it.

Things like that.

The reliability, which is how long does the data last.

If left alone will it persist or is it going to degrade over time? And then the portability, how easy is it for you to take that data from one computer to another using that storage device.

With those in mind, let's head into the first activity.

So we're going to jump right into it and look at how we select a storage device.

Considering these factors to select a device you need to pick out which of the categories are important for the given situation, and then choose a device that meets those requirements.

Let's have a go at one now.

So Jamie wants to send his mum a copy of his wedding photos through the mail.

There are lots of photos totaling about two gigabytes of data.

Which of the factors are important for Jamie? Is it capacity, cost, access speed, durability, reliability or portability? If you want to pause the video here and reread the statement, I'd like you to pick out some key factors for Jamie's situation.

Resume when you're done and we'll go through the answers.

Welcome back, hopefully, you were able to pick out a few important factors for Jamie.

Let's have a look.

So for Jamie, it's important that there is storage capacity for at least two gigabytes, and they need to be sent through the mail.

So the device needs to be durable and tough, and also needs to be portable, quite light otherwise you'll end up spending all of his money just sending in the mail.

So now that we've identified some of the key factors for Jamie's situation, I'd like you to use your worksheet and the reference table that's on there, it's the same one that you used in lesson six, and it contains the information of a bunch of different storage devices.

What I'd like you to do is to decide which type would work for Jamie.

Are they all equally suitable or is there one that stands out to you? And then I would like you to think of a device to recommend.

You might have more than one option, but I want you to pick a favourite.

Pause the video now and head over to your worksheet to do that and then come back when you're done and we'll go through my recommendations and see if they match up to yours.

Okay, should we have a look and see what devices I think would be suitable for Jamie, and if they match up to yours and then we'll pick a favourite.

So for Jamie I think either a USB stick or a DVD would be suitable options.

He needs something extremely portable, but also that can hold two gigabytes of data.

Personally, I think my favourite is a USB stick, that's because it is more durable and more reliable than the DVD, and so sending it through the mail would be easier.

So my favourite is a USB stick.

Do you agree? Did you have a different device? If so, that's fine as long as you have a good justification for why you chose that device.

Let's have a go on another one and see if we can do it again.

So this time, we're talking about Maja.

So Maja has made a video game and she wants to distribute it to paying customers.

Which of the factors are important for Maja? I'm going to pause the video here again, reread through the statement and have a think about which of these factors are most important for Maja's situation.

Resume when you're back and we'll go through some more recommendations.


Hopefully you were able to pick out some key factors.

Let's have a look.

So, it's important for Maja to have the capacity to hold a video game because video games can be quite large files, which means we also need to consider the cost per gigabyte.

We don't want something that's going to be overly expensive for her to distribute to her customers, otherwise, she might not end up making any money off of her video game, which if she's selling it to paying customers she probably wants to do.

We also want it to be reliable, it shouldn't arrive with her customers and then not work anymore, and portable so it's easy to distribute.

So, let's make some recommendations for what type of storage you think would be best, and which device.

I'd like you to do both of these, this time, not just which device, but think about what type of storage and which device.

Pause the video now, head over to your worksheet and use that reference table and make some recommendations, when you're done come back and we'll go through them.


Right, let's have a look and see which type of storage and what devices we could recommend.

I think Maja wants optical storage.

That's because it is commonly used to distribute things like video games and music.

So it's extremely portable, it's relatively low cost per gigabyte, as long as her game isn't overly large, it's reliable, if it's taken care of, they'll still be there and obviously extremely portable.

So, of the optical storage mediums that are on that reference table, I think it would either have to be a DVD or Blu ray.

This is because a CD doesn't have enough storage capacity to hold a video game, they're typically much smaller.

Which device do I think would be right? Either in this case would work.

If the game is big enough, I would go for a blu ray, if the game is smaller, I will put it on a DVD.

As I said, it doesn't really matter what device you choose as long as you have a good justification for why you've chosen it, and if you follow those steps, identify the key factors that are important for the situation, and you can make a justified reason for your chosen storage device.

You'll be okay.

Let's have a look at another one.

So this one is Ana.

Ana needs to backup her video archives, she is a freelance videographer and has a large collection of videos to save.

I'd like you to go over to your worksheet and first identify key characteristics and then recommend a storage device.

I want you to do the whole process on your own this time.

So we won't go through the factors first, we're just going to come back and discuss which device you should recommend.

You want to pause the video here, head over to your worksheet, you'll find Ana's situation on there, and you can make some recommendations.

Come back when you're done and we'll go through the answers.

Welcome back, let's see what I think would be a good device for Ana.

I would go for a hard drive in this instance, she has a large collection of videos which tend to be quite large files anyway, and she'll therefore want it to be quite cheap in the cost per gigabyte.

She wants it to be reliable, so they'll still be there and persist for long periods of time, but probably doesn't need it to be anything like portable or durable because she can just keep it in one place.

A hard drive in my opinion is the right device to recommend to Ana.

Again, if you disagree with me and you think you've chosen another one, as long as you've got a good justification for it, you'll be alright.

Well, one last situation for you here, and this is Jakob.

He has created a design document for a text editor that his team are going to create.

He wants to share this with his team and collaboratively work on the document.

His team have offices in both London and New York.

Which kind of storage would be best for Jakob? Do any of the storage devices we discussed already work? The problem here is that they want to collaboratively work on a document from two separate locations, both London and New York.

The storage mediums we've looked at so far involve you physically being there to transfer the data.

You could send it through the mail on a DVD or USB stick, but the collaboration will be very slow, because you'd have to send it there, have them work on it, and then send it back.

So, we need another type of storage to satisfy Jakob's needs.

This next activity, we're going to be looking at Cloud Storage.

To start off with I'd like to answer some questions about the cloud.

First of all, what is the cloud? When we store things on the cloud where do they go? And also are any of the devices you've looked at already part of the cloud? You want to pause the video here and write some answers to these questions in your notes.

Resume when you're done, and we'll go through each of them.

Welcome back.

Did you have answers to these questions? Let's have a look.

So first of all, what is the cloud? The cloud is a way to store and access files through the internet.

We save things via applications like Google Drive, or Dropbox, or any other file sharing service.

And then we can access them on any of our devices using an internet connection and usually a browser or some sort of dedicated application.

When we store things on the cloud, they go to this cloud storage providers warehouses which are full of servers.

These are called server farms. These servers are large computers that are always connected to the internet waiting to receive and to deliver your data to you.

So they don't actually physically go into anything like the cloud, instead, they're just stored physically somewhere else.

Which devices are part of the cloud already? Well, the data is stored on the servers with hard drives, or maybe even solid state drives.

Most often, though, you're talking hard drives, hundreds of them.

So somebody like Google will have these huge server farms full of computers that are always connected to the internet and always running with hundreds of hard drives plugged in, and your data is physically stored on those hard drives and delivered to you when you asked for it.

Why might someone choose to use cloud storage? Remember Jakob's situation, people like using cloud storage because it allows you to share files easily, it prevents from things like physical damage to your computer, and it also means that you can access them from wherever you are and on any device.

With the internet having picked up as it has, cloud storage is becoming more and more popular.

Before we carry on, I just like to make a note of some of the advantages of cloud storage.

I'm going to go over them now, we've already mentioned a few, but just make sure you have these note down on your notepad.

So, cloud storage can expand as you need it.

It can get a bigger storage capacity if you require.

You might start with two gigabytes of data and then realise that you've got some video files you would like to backup.

You can then ask your cloud storage provider to expand your capacity so that you can fit those files in.

In traditional storage mediums, this will mean buying a whole new device whereas with cloud storage, it's usually just a few clicks.

Your files can be accessed anywhere in the world, on any device.

For Google Drive for example, I have applications both on my laptop and on my mobile phone, so if I want to access a document I've been working on while I'm on the go or I'm out and about, I can just log onto my mobile phone, have a look, make some edits and then send it back off and share it with my colleagues.

Speaking of sharing, it's much easier with cloud storage.

It enables collaboration because I can just send people a link to my files, and they can access it wherever and whenever.

If they have a mobile, they can access it like that, if they got a laptop, they can access it on there.

It makes collaboration and sharing of files much, much easier.

And also, backups are simpler.

The provider looks after the file, so whoever I get my cloud storage from has a responsibility to make sure that my files remain intact.

I don't invest my responsibility by giving it to Google and Google says, by storing your files with us, we promise that we will do everything we can to keep them safe.

This doesn't mean that Google will absolutely guarantee nothing will happen to my files, because anything could happen, but what it does mean is that they're more safe than if I just had them on a singular hard drive in my house.

You're going to pause the video here just to make sure you've got all of these in your notes.

That's fine, resume when you're done, and we'll carry on.

Okay, hopefully you got those noted down, let's keep going.

So another activity for you now.

Let's consider this statement, "Since 2010, the number of businesses who use the cloud has increased by 63%".

This is from the cloud industry forum, which is a website dedicated to the cloud storage or cloud computing industry.

I would like you to think about this statement and describe some of the possible reasons for the increase in the use of cloud storage on your notepad.

Think about what other technologies have grown in the same period.

Well, pause the video, have a go write your answer, come back, and we'll discuss it.

Right, so why has the use of cloud storage increased so much? Well, I asked you to think about what other technologies were growing at the same time, and I hope you picked out two major ones.

One is mobile technology, things like ultra portable laptops and the powerful smartphones we now have.

These technologies allow you to do more computing on the go.

We all have them on us at all times, and it also means that you can work from anywhere.

Businesses take advantage of this by also using cloud storage, which makes accessing and collaborating on files much easier.

The other one is the prevalence of the internet.

Even since 2010, the speeds and access to internet has increased greatly, which means it is more viable for companies to use solely internet based file sharing services, like Google Drive or Dropbox.

So, the reasons that cloud storage has grown so much in those intervening years is because of extra technologies, and also the advantages that we just discussed.

Let's have a look at some of the disadvantages for cloud storage.

Again, I would like you to make notes of these on your notepad so that you know both the advantages and disadvantages of cloud storage just like we did for the other storage mediums in lessons five and six.

So, cloud storage relies on an internet connection, so if your internet connection drops for any reason or if you have an unstable internet connection, it can be very difficult to access your files.

It can still be slower than a traditional physical device to access your files.

Obviously, you need to send your files via the Internet to your device.

So if you have something like a video, which is really large, it will take some time to download onto your device.

And also, there are some risks to storing data online, which we're going to discuss next.

If you'd like to pause the video here and just make sure you've got all these noted down, resume when you're done and we'll carry on.

Okay, welcome back.

This next activity, we're going to talk about some of the impacts of storing data online.

So cloud storage, as we said, requires an internet connection and a stable internet connection at that.

So there might be some ethical impacts and we need to consider.

Ethical impacts are things impacting right or wrong or issues that impact one group more than another.

So, what could stop somebody having stable internet access? And does this affect certain people more than others? If you'd like to pause the video here, I'd like you to just make a few notes about some answers to these questions.

So what could stop someone having internet access or stable internet access? And does this affect some people more than others? Resume when you're done and we'll talk about it.

The fact is, you need to think about when considering why someone might struggle to have access to a stable internet connection or mostly socio-economic.

Now one of the more obvious ones is that a stable and fast internet connection can be expensive and this might be difficult to afford for some people, but there are also other factors that you should think about.

Things like the prevalence of internet connected work in your household.

If everybody works a job that does not require access to the internet, the value you will place on having a stable and quick internet connection will be less, and this might impact the availability of the internet to you.

There are also things to consider like the place that you live.

So, close to cities we tend to get stable and fast internet connection tends to be quite easy, but if you live in a more rural area, getting access to any sort of internet connection, let alone a stable and quick one, can be very difficult.

If we carry on, heading towards a cloud based normal of file storage and business operation, we run the risk of leaving some people out if they can't afford or access, a stable connection.

These are the sorts of things we need to consider when talking about storing data online.

Let's have a look at another one.

Here's a headline for you.

The UK government loses personal data of 3 million citizens.

Think about this, what if this was on the cloud? Were this data had been stored on the cloud by the UK government and it lost the data of those 3 million citizens.

Who else might want the personal data of UK residents? Pause the video here and have a go write some answers in your notebook, and then resume when you're done and we'll talk about it.

Okay, then Welcome back.

Let's have a little look at what would happen if the UK government lost 3 million citizens' data and it was stored on the cloud.

So first of all, the data could be used to impersonate the subject of data.

Now the subject of the data is the person who that personal data is about, right.

So say, as part of that 3 million citizens data that was lost, they would have my personal information, and I would be the subject of that data.

They would know my name, potentially my date of birth, where I live, things like that, and that could be used to impersonate me and to sign up for things like credit cards or to make an online purchase.

Identity fraud is a real problem in the digital age and three million people's data being out there in the wild is not a good thing.

Other governments might want to use the data for things like tracking of UK citizens or even more nefarious means.

Now this isn't a big risk and other governments aren't really looking to steal all of our data, but it is something that the data subjects had not signed up for, and that, again is an impact that we should consider.

If that data was stored on the cloud, it's not just the UK government's fault, but also the cloud storage provider.

As I said earlier, when I agree to let a cloud storage provider hold my data, they take on some of the responsibility of protecting it.

The fact that it was stored online means that they've probably been the victim of a cyber attack.

This is their responsibility, and they should build security measures so that this is harder to do, and they're also responsible for recovering anything they can or stopping the hackers from doing anything malicious with my data.

So, these are some of the impacts that we should consider if somebody is storing data online.

There are some risks.

That's all from me today.

Thank you so much for your hard work during this lesson, and I really hope you enjoyed it.

One last thing is I'd like to ask you to share your work with Oak National.

If you'd like to of course, please ask your parent or carer to show your work on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, tagging @OakNational and #LearnWithOak.

I'll see you next time.

Happy learning.