This is interesting… Dropbox and Google Drive have always been competitors (in my mind and usage), but it seems like Dropbox is taking on the “internet scale storage system” that Dave Winer mentioned on Twitter… more like competition with Evernote?
Dropbox users will be able to create, open, edit, save, and share Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides directly from Dropbox. And when you’re working in Dropbox, you’ll be able to save Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides to your Dropbox account.
Now, when you tap the More button in Messenger for iOS or Android, you’ll see Dropbox as an available source. With the Dropbox app installed on your phone, you can share any file in your Dropbox without having to leave the Messenger app.
My team primarily uses Dropbox for our file storage and sharing. It was a back-and-forth battle for a while between Google Drive (since we use Google Apps for email, calendars etc) and Dropbox, and we still do use Drive for some project management. Even a few of our clients prefer it as they are already using Drive and Google Apps themselves.
However, our official party line is on the Dropbox side now because of its integration with other apps that we also rely on to get things done like Podio, Slack, and Freshbooks.
The biggest downside of going with Dropbox over Drive for me (#firstworldproblem) has been when I’m traveling or doing some quick catch up work at home outside of the office. That’s because I typically take my Chromebook (currently a Toshiba Chromebook 2 but that new Pixel is wearing on my will power) during those times. Editing a Word document or Excel sheet from a client or team member is definitely not as smooth on a Chromebook as working on a shared Google Doc or Sheet. So, I would resort to downloading the document from Dropbox and opening it as a Google Doc then redownloading when I was finished and reuploading it to the appropriate Dropbox folder. I also kept a zombie copy of many working docs in my Google Drive just so I could access them on the road, but they weren’t always up-to-date and current. It was a subtle pain that always annoyed me.
Until this announcement this week. I’ve tried it a few times now and it’s seamless and works great.
Thanks, Dropbox and Microsoft, you solved my workflow issue! Looks like I’ll be using Office Online a great deal more in the coming months…
What does that mean for you? For starters, you don’t need the desktop versions of Microsoft Office — or even your own computer — to update any Office files stored in your Dropbox. Just click the ‘Open’ button when you’re previewing a Dropbox file on the web, and you can edit the file right from your browser via Office Online. Any changes will automatically be saved back to your Dropbox.
You’ll also be able to access your Dropbox directly from Office Online, so you can open any of your Dropbox files — and save new files to Dropbox — without leaving Office Online.
No one likes to take the time to make passwords online. When you’re setting up your CBSSports account to fill in your March Madness brackets, you just want to get to work. No one’s going to hack you, so you just use the same password there as you do for your Bank of America account and GMail. Who cares, right? You’ve got nothing to hide.
And then you get “hacked” and it’s no fun.
Being a “techy” person, I get lots of questions about how to avoid being “hacked” (it’s fascinating to me how that word has changed its usage as geek and tech culture has become mainstream).
My response is normally:
1) Never use the same password twice. Ever. Use a service such as LastPass if you’re into that (I am).
2) For each of the online services you use, make unique and long passwords that include random characters and even nonsense strings that only you know (I know, I know… this isn’t completely foolproof but it helps prevent the script kiddie hacks). Try to avoid common terms such as “password,” “changeme,” or “123456.”
3) Never use the same password twice. Ever.
4) If you can, enable 2 Factor Authentication.
5) Never use the same password twice. Ever.
Step 1 is usually when the person loses interest in my advice. But you should really enable Two Factor Authentication (2FA) as soon as possible if you’re at all concerned about your online accounts or just want to have a good lock on your doors to keep honest people honest.
TwoFactorAuthor.org has a nice list of major services that we all use, with links to relevant instructions, such as Google Accounts, Dropbox, Twitter, Facebook, even Steam or Etsy etc.
There’s no reason for you not to do this today.
Two-factor authentication! In this age of endless massive hacks we seem to be in the middle of, it’s one of the easiest ways you can dramatically boost security on your online accounts.
But which sites actually support it? It can be a pain to keep track. Fortunately, a new, community-driven list keeps a running list of all the big sites that have some form of 2FA enabled (and encourages you to nag at those that don’t).
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