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
- 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.
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..
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.
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.
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