The Cloud Is the Club for Your "Record" Collection

Over the weekend we sent our intern/special correspondent Andrew Gospe down to Portland to pick up some snark. He came back more than empty-handed.

His car was broken into and his laptop stolen, and with it his record collection. We're going to do our best to help him rebuild by donating some of the goods that end up on our doorstep (he already has first dibs on the new Herb Alpert/Lani Hall record). Trying as hard as I can not to say "I told you so" (mostly because I don't think we've had this conversation), this all could have been prevented (OK, not all, but some). You can't do anything about the pipe-hitters who will break into your ride, but you can do something about putting all your eggs in one MacBook.

There is, of course, the subscription route that we've been touting over here for the last forever. You don't own your music, you pay a modest monthly fee in the $10 range, and you get access to nine million(ish) songs (depending on the service; Mog or Rhapsody, for example), that you can access from your mobile device, computer, and, soon, your car. Yes, your computer can be stolen, but your music can't.

Amazon recently unrolled a second option, one surely appealing to people who continue to tell themselves they own their mp3s as they do their CDs and LPs. Amazon's Cloud Drive lets you upload your entire record collection--or movies, or other digital files--to a cloud that you can access from your computer or Android-supported device (the lack of iPhone compatibility takes this option down a peg). Think of it as a blood bank for your James Black and Beat Connection. You pay a modest annual storage fee if your collection is over 5 gigs (and a hippie like Gospe probably surely packs a large digital footprint). Your computer and your phone can still be stolen, but your music can't.

There. Now we've had the conversation. Now go and help yourself to any of the CDs on my desk.

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