Head in the clouds?


little man zapped II, originally uploaded by DragonDrop.

Cloud computing sounds partially dull, partially too techy to be interesting but it’s another thing that’s made my life easier.

It’s all about having all the info I need wherever I am. A lot of my personal data is stored in the Google cloud. For instance, all of my contacts are centralised in google mail. Emails as well as phone numbers, addresses, etc. are all stored there. I’ve recently amalgamated all my contacts to the one location – in the Google cloud. I can access these contacts via my phone (which, thanks to it being Android) automatically synchronises with ‘the cloud’ – ie if add a new contact on my phone, it automatically backs up to the cloud and I can access it via any online computer. My diary is synchronised with my Google Diary so if I put something in my outlook calandar at work it automatically gets onto my Google calendar which I can view and edit on any online computer as well as on my phone.

Google Docs is another one. Everything from spreadsheets, word processed documents, presentations, files, PDF’s etc – I can access them all from where ever I am – create, edit, save ahd share them all from the cloud.

For bigger files / zips / folders of content, I’ve been using Microsoft Sky Drive – which does what it says on the tin – provides your own ‘hard drive’ (where you can securely store what ever you need) in the Microsoft cloud.

I’ve been doing it for years to some degree – keeping my photo album online – flickr. Every time I get a good photo I’ll stick it up on flickr. I’ve not got nearly 5000 photos up there that I can search and retrieve.

I do the same thing with my bookmarks. Google chrome has just enabled synchronised Google bookmarking recently and although the phone end of this isn’t quite as neat, I can still access my bookmarks / save a new bookmark where ever I am.

I’ve been doing the same thing with my tasks (using the Remember The Milk – the only paid for app out of all the cloud things I use) tool as mentioned in an earlier blog and recently I’ve discovered snaptic / (and it’s phone ‘notes’ interface) 3 banana – a brilliant tool that’s essentially a private blog where you can mash down thoughts (from your browser / phone ) and they save on a personal blog page ready for you to copy / paste / edit / use later – I’m at this moment sketching this idea out in snaptic with the idea of tidying it up and blogging with it later.

It’s all good and by and large, its all free.

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