In a small but significant move, Google Docs now allows users to upload folder structures as well as files. Recently they opened Docs to uploads of any kind of file. This helps Docs move a bit closer to the fabled GDrive. Still not as functional as DropBox with its efficient and seamless file synching, but an increasingly viable place to store and work with personal or business files. Google seems to be putting a lot of resources into its cloud products, so watch out for ever more fully featured iterations of Docs, Gmail and their music storage service.
Sometimes a client might give you a file saved in an exotic format. You don't have the program required to open it, nor are you inclined to install it for this one instance. Now you don't have to — Zamzar allows you to upload your file and save it as something openable. In my case, I tested the service by uploading a Microsoft Publisher file and saving it as a Word Doc. Seconds later, the converted file was in my inbox. The basic service is currently free, with a paid service allowing online file storage and faster processing. The name of the service derives from the protagonist of Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis.
Thinking about storing some of your files online? Perhaps you want to access certain files while travelling, or share photographs with family or colleagues, or just have an online backup. Here's a short list of online storage providers (all of them have a free account)
- Rackspace (consumer solution also branded as Jungle Disk)
- Amazon Cloud Drive
Other options include Google's Picasa albums and their Google Docs service. Microsoft also have a fairly generous offering. The constant reduction in the price of storage (Moore's Law, anyone?) has made possible this impressive expansion in low cost online file storage.