Library Info

February 2010 - Posts

Google Docs Introduces New (super helpful) Features

For months, rumors had been spreading that Google would being accommodating more file types in Google Documents and would increasing the amount of storage space available for users. A couple weeks ago, the rumors became a reality.
Google now allows users to upload, store, access and share their files through the popular Google Docs. In the past, uploaded files were automatically converted to one of three Google Doc types (word processing documents, spreadsheets, and presentations). With the new features, you will now be able to upload any file type whether it be a Microsoft document, an Open Office document, an image, a video file or audio clip. In short, the application is giving you a taste of cloud computing. Store your files remotely and access them anywhere you have internet access.

The other big change is the introduction of more storage space. The service offers 1 GB of storage completely free of charge and the option of buying additional space for $0.25 per GB. Based on the ever-increasing storage space given to gmail users, this move doesn't come as much of a surprise.

If you're interested in trying to service, you don't need to worry about switching email addresses or signing up for a lot of new services. You can simply sign up for a Google account using your current email address. Google's changes reflect a larger shift in personal computing which is beginning to really take off. The ability to store your files in "the cloud" gives users more flexibility while still (ideally) protecting personal files.

Google Docs  

Edit PDFs Without Buying Expensive Software

Ninety percent of the time, I prefer communicating via email rather than making a phone call, mailing something or (especially) faxing. This is especially true when it comes to applications or other PDF documents. Like the library computers, most individuals only have access to Adobe Reader, rather than a more sophisticated version of the software which allows you to edit and save PDFs.

An easy workaround presents itself in the form of FillAnyPDF. This site allows you to upload a PDF so that you can enter text into blank fields and then save the document. (FYI, you have the option of creating an account or just going straight to editing your document). By doing so, you can simply email the form on to the intended recipient rather than mailing or faxing it. The site also allows you to change font size, blackout, whiteout or highlight text. After entering all your text, click the download button at the bottom of the page and then save the PDF to your computer or memory device of choice.

I will caution you that there is no clear information on the security of the site so you may want to think twice before using it for confidential information. I have, however, seen the site recommended by several blogs which take security into consideration when evaluating a product or service which I find comforting. What other workarounds do you use for editing PDFs? Share your thoughts in the comments section!