Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Syncing Files with Syncplicity.com

We recently posted some info about cloud computing and syncing files across computers. Over the past several months, we've had a chance to fiddle around with various products and we have grown to like Syncplicity quite a bit. As with any new technology, there were a few idiosyncrasies that we had to get used to -- but we've now gotten the hang of the product and love having our files synced and backed up. We've now used Syncplicity for more than six months -- so feel free to contact us with any questions.

  • Creates an online directory / copy of the files you want.
  • Files then get synced to your other PCs.
  • Files get synced immediately -- even if Excel/Word is open (as long as the file is saved); no other product did this in our testing...
  • Free version allows you to sync 2 PCs and 2GB of space.
  • You can share files / directories with others.
  • You can get more space by referring friends. (1 GB / friend up to 3GB for a total of 5GB free space).
  • $99 per year for 50 GB of space.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Laptop Specs

It's "back-to-school" time, so we took a look at our "best bang for the buck" laptops in terms of power per dollar. Some people might prefer looks or battery life -- but for the purposes of our list, we track our "sweet-spot" in terms of computing power per price.

Here are the specs for what we think you can currently get (as well as some history so you can track advances in technology, and computer processing value):

Aug 09...... 2.1 GHz(x2)......4 GB...............320 GB...........$500
Aug 08...... 1.9 GHz(x2)......3 GB...............250 GB...........$550
Dec 07........1.6 GHz(x2)......1.5GB.............120 GB...........$550

Various models will have different specs -- but if you shop around, you should be able to get these specs "on average" (and over time, improved specs at better prices!). We usually find the best prices at Best Buy, and sometimes Costco/club stores. Once in a while, Amazon has some good deals.

We prefer the big names such as HP/Compaq, Dell, Toshiba & Gateway. If you like the Sony name, you will pay slightly more. And of course, some people prefer the styling of the Apple Macbooks -- but that's a different category.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cloud Computing: Where is Google's GDrive?

Do you use more than one computer -- and then find yourself looking for your most recent work? In the past, we used to email ourselves the most recent versions of spreadsheets or document (so we could work on things at home, for instance)... Today, cloud computing and the ability to sync files is getting hot. Imagine working on a file -- and having the latest version getting synced on all of your computers -- automatically and almost instantly!!

We have been waiting for Google's GDrive -- but it has been slow in coming out. We have high hopes for Google's product based on the performance and features of gmail and google documents. In addition, recent chatter about Google's Chrome browser (syncing bookmarks -- and additional Google document features) -- have us hoping that GDrive is coming out real soon.

In the meantime, if you want to explore other Cloud Computing / file syncing options, here are some of the best out there currently. You can sync a few GBs worth of files with most of these services for free -- and then pay a fee (around $25-$100/year for most) for more storage.
  • Syncplicity.com - our favorite; some good features. We'll describe Syncplicity more in another post.
  • Live Mesh - mesh.com -- we like that this is backed by Microsoft. You can even use this to easily access your other pcs remotely.
  • Dropbox: getdropbox.com
  • SugarSync.com - tons of features
  • Mozy.com -- a great tool to backup files on the internet automatically.