When we are on-the-go professionals, and are potentially required to work from home or from other locations on the road, isn’t it good to be able to reach your data no matter where you are?
Thus is the interest in being able to “live in the cloud”, keeping data and information on Internet computers out there somewhere. Unfortunately, it also means that instead of making our own backups, we must rely on someone else’s backups. Suppose the company goes out of business? This has already happened for several photo sites – and in one case, it took the customer’s photos with them.
There are many sites that can provide a safe harbour for data or for information of various kinds. My favorites are these:
- Office Suites: GoogleDocs, ThinkOffice, Zoho Office
- ToDo Lists: Nozbe, RememberTheMilk
- Photos: Picasa
- Newsreaders: Google Reader
- Desktop: Goowy, eyeOS
- Storage: Box.net
- Bookmarks: Del.icio.us
The online desktops Goowy and eyeOS deserve special mention. Not only do they provide a desktop, but also all the standard applications you might need. It is possible to run within one of these desktops and save your data entirely with one of these setups. This makes for a fantastic central location for everything – and a larger-than-normal risk.
EyeOS has one more feature that most of these do not: it is open source. If you want to run your own version of EyeOS, there’s no problem doing so. This is incredibly useful if you have your own server to run this on. Then you can centralize your information and retain control at the same time.
I also find the mail clients in Goowy and eyeOS to be quite useful for sending mail from anywhere with a browser.