Just recently Atlanta Ventures moved our offices within the Atlanta Tech Village from an old-school traditional office to an open floor plan. There are no more offices! One of the things we added to make this work is four huddle rooms with large iMacs and 3 phone booths, also with iMacs. These computers are wide open and ready for anyone to jump on when you have a phone call or have a quick need. Around the same time, I bought another laptop so I can stop lugging my MacBook Air back and forth from home to office.
Now with these two small changes (public-ish computers plus two laptops), I’ve realized that for the first time since I was 14 years old, I don’t have, or need, my “own” computer.
My computer doesn’t exist. It’s all in the cloud. Everything. I can sit down at any machine with Chrome and be set to go. Here’s what I use and what I mean:
- Gmail – all my email is stored in the cloud, complete with my custom keyboard shortcuts, folders, and viewing layout preferences
- Dropbox – all of my files are in Dropbox, quickly accessible through the app or the web site (or my iPhone, or my iPad)
- Triple Redundancy – I happen to let my two laptops keep 90% of my dropbox files synced locally to both machines. Not sure I need to do this, but I have the storage so may as well. As a kicker, I have Carbonite running on one of the laptops, creating another Cloud backup in real-time of all my files.
- Google Drive – I’ve been able to almost completely dump MS Office and use the amazingly powerful Google Drive+Docs for just about everything. (The last remaining hurdle is some big spreadsheets with fancy gadgets like Pivot Tables where Google Spreadsheets isn’t quite there yet.)
- Chrome – by signing in and out of my browser now, all of my bookmarks, history, passwords, extensions and goodies are right at my finger tips (and right where I expect them to be) no matter what local machine I’m on. It’s amazing to me to leave the office, come home, pull up my browser and have all the same tabs open with the sites I was reading at the office.
As a nerd, I’m so thankful to be alive right now. Technology is so awesome.