My 1 Month Cloud Computing Challenge - Day 4

Day 3 has been posted below.

This is something I've been thinking about doing for a while..... I hope you can follow along with me and offer any advice help along the way.

What is the Cloud Computing Challenge
Simply put, to see if I can do all my day to day stuff entirely in the Cloud, that is without using any software or file on my hard disk (with the exception of the my Browser (Chrome) and Windows 7).

This means that everything I do on my computer I have to do entirely within my browser and I'm not allowed to store or use any files onto my PC.

How long will the Challenge Last
I'm going to see if I can last 1 full month using nothing but my Browser.

When does it start?
Now! From this post onwards I will use nothing but my Browser.

I will update this post regularly as I face new hurdles and need advice software.

If you have any questions, please let me know.

Day 1 - The Setup
Ok, we're on Day one. The first thing I need to do is to get a basic setup of apps and ideas.

Listed below are the initial online Services that I will be using.

Browser - Google Chrome
Docs - Google Docs for all my Document and Spreadsheet needs
Blogging - Google Blogger to track my progress
Mail - Already using Gmail

Below are the items that I need to investigate to find online only solutions. If you have any tips about good online services/extensions please let me know in the comment.

- Browser Twitter client to replace Twhirl
- Online Graphics Editor
- Image Hosting
- Play MP3s/Video
- Task Manager
- Calendar
- Virus Scanner (Is this relevant anymore on the cloud)

I'm sure there will be a load of other items that I need to find an alternative for but for now I think this should keep me going.

Day 2
Thanks to Xavier for the tip about the Twitter extension Chrowety. It's a really good client for Chrome and very useful.

Been amazed about just how much I can do just by using all the free Google tools.

Google Docs handles pretty much any file I'm sent via gmail and it converts most formats that I use on a day to day basis..

Current Issues
Looking for a way to save an image so that I can make edits or use in blog posts without having to save it to my hard disk first?

Anyone have any extensions and/or free services that will allow me to take a photo from a site and use it on my site or documents.

Oh advice of some friends, I'm going to check out Aviary later today. Hopefully I can get this to work with URLs rather than having to upload saved images.

I'll report back tomorrow with my findings on Aviary and any other issues I've found.


Day 3
Ok, one of the biggest issues I thought I would have would be how to use/create and save Images. I've always used applications like Paint.NET, irfanview etc to do my image work.

However lots of you email me and suggested I use the Chrome Extension Aviary.

Ok once you have installed the Aviary Extension you get a little Icon in your Chrome Toolbar, click that and you are presented with a host of options. Click the Image Editor.


This then loads the image editor. Click Load Existing File


 Here we can either upload an existing file from your hard disk or specify a URL. As this is the cloud computing challenge I use the the From URL and paste in the URL of the image I want to use.


Paste in the URL and click Upload


Once it is has uploaded your file you can then make whatever changes you like


Once completed click File, Save As and you will be presented with the following screen. Complete the fields and click Save as new creation


Once save it provides you with a number of options from which to use your newly uploaded image. Here we use the Image URL so that we can specify it directly into the post.


Thanks to everyone who suggested Aviary, it seems that this is the goto tool for people want to edit/create images on a Cloud only PC. It's very impressive.

Tomorrow's challenge is to find a good online only Chat Client/Extension.

Any suggestions?


Day 4
Thanks everyone for suggesting Meebo. I've been using it now for a day and this seems like the best online only IM Client. I'll try to do a little more detailed write up later.

I'm impressed how easy it is to setup and to add various accounts. I can now chat with Meebo just as easily as I could with a number of standalone clients.

So far I've not found any other issues that is stopping me moving to an online only existence,although a couple of things that I will probably need to look at.

- Document conversion (Probably Google Docs will handle most of these)
- Sync Bookmarks and passwords across different computers. (Google Sync?)
- How to take a video from a site like YouTube and load it into my account
- NON RSS Feed sites page monitoring
- Online Music Streaming (LastFM?)
- Online Torrent Downloading to an online file store
- I'll also be looking at Hootsuite Twitter Managemet

15 comments:

  1. Good luck with this. Should be fun to follow along.

    For Twitter I recommend the chrome extension Chrowety. Its very good.

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  2. Thanks Xavier, I think I'm going to need all the help I can get! I'll check it out as the Twitter client extensions is pretty key.

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  3. Thought about doing this myself. I will be interested to see how it works for you. Keep me posted...

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  4. Thanks Scott, will do. Hope that I don't come unstuck lol

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  5. Have you tried Aviary? http://aviary.com/

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  6. Hey Ross, thanks. Yep a few people have suggested that. I'm just installing now. Looks pretty cool and it looks like I can import URL images rather than having to save them to my hard disk first.

    I'll make a post tomorrow with some screenshots etc.

    Thanks for stopping by

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  7. Awesome concept, never thought about it before! And great, clean blog you have here!
    Will def stop by again and see other blogger tips you have. A lot of others on the net are very broad or hard to follow. Keep it up!

    Didn't know about Aviary until I read this post - I draw a webcartoon called Cow Texas (http://cowtexas.blogspot.com) . I've only used the simple Microsoft Paint up til now, but I think this might give a few more nice features with layers and transparency. Thanks!

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  8. I try and learn something new everyday. Thanks for the information.

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  9. Did not see what you found out about needing an Anti-Virus program, so thought this was at least an interesting item: http://www.pandasecurity.com or read more here first http://download.cnet.com/Panda-Cloud-Antivirus-Free-Edition/3000-2239_4-10914099.html

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  10. You have a great blog for infor

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  11. a couple of persons have proposed that. I'm just establishing now. Looks attractive cooling and it examines like I can trade URL pictures other than having to save them to my hard computer disk first.

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