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Sharing Data: Using the Cloud to Your Advantage

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

cloud computingHello and welcome to Chesapeake Digital Technology´s blog. We’re an information technology firm in Reisterstown, Maryland.. We provide several services, like SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and Technical Support to small and medium businesses.

Sharing data around the office is crucial in today’s workplace. While sharing data has always been important, what’s changed is how we think of a workplace. In the past there might have been an office of 15 people working at a single location. Now there could be 25 people, only 5 of which share an actual physical space. The rest can be telecommuting, working on the road, etc. Sharing information now becomes much more complicated. Fortunately, there are services to help lighten the load.

Apple’s MobileMe Service

MobileMe works best when you have more that just documents to share. MobileMe provides for just over 10GB of online storage, as well as syncing of Dock shortcuts, Contacts, Calendars, and more. The only storage, called iDisk, can be mounted/mapped to your desktop so dragging/dropping of files is easily done. Once completed, devices like iPhones and iPads can access any file stored on the iDisk with a free app, provided the files are under 30MB. The service offers a free 60 day trial and after that is only $100/year. It comes with an email address at “”.

Google Docs

Google Docs is a great, free way to enable collaboration online. You can store any type of file online (up to 1Gb free), upload and edit Office-style documents, and share both with friends and family. The real benefit here is the ability to edit workplace documents, like Word/Pages files, in real time with other people. This makes it great for people who have to collaborate on a project. You are notified who else is viewing a document, and the changes are viewed in real time. Google Docs requires a Google Account, which is free.

Microsoft Office Live

Office Live allows for users to store Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files online. You download a free update for your Microsoft Office products and then it allows you to save data to their servers (5GB free). The files can then be shared with others. While this service is free, it can only be access through newer version of Microsoft Office. While you likely have these programs already, you may want to consider purchasing the software as part of the price tag for this service.

That’s all for this week. Come back again next week for more small business tips!


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