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Apple co-founder Wozniak sees trouble in the cloud

Published on Aug 5, 2012 5:31 PM
Customers look at the a new Apple iPad at Apple's flagship store on Fifth Avenue, in New York, in this March 16, 2012 file photo. The US is bracing for a data crunch from the surging use of smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices. The explosion of use of these devices for the Internet is rapidly eating up the radio spectrum allocated for mobile broadband. -- PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Steve Wozniak, who co-founded Apple with the late Steve Jobs, predicted "horrible problems" in the coming years as cloud-based computing takes hold.

Mr Wozniak, 61, was the star turn at the penultimate performance in Washington of The Agony And The Ecstasy Of Steve Jobs," monologist Mike Daisey's controversial two-hour expose of Apple's labour conditions in China.

In a post-performance dialogue with Mr Daisey and audience members, Mr Wozniak held forth on topics as varied as public education (he once did a stint as a school teacher) and reality TV (having appeared on Dancing With The Stars). But the engineering wizard behind the progenitor of today's personal computer, the Apple II, was most outspoken on the shift away from hard disks towards uploading data into remote servers, known as cloud computing.

"I really worry about everything going to the cloud," he said. "I think it's going to be horrendous. I think there are going to be a lot of horrible problems in the next five years." He added: "With the cloud, you don't own anything. You already signed it away" through the legalistic terms of service with a cloud provider that computer users must agree to.

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