I have used Google in my Web Marketing business for a number of years now. The Adsense, Adwords and Analytics products have been key in monetizing my sites. I have also used the Google Webmaster Tools to track the submission of URL’s and identify site errors.
Now, I’m turning my attention to my personal productivity. Because of my experience in IT I have tended to want a high degree of control over my email. I also tended to think that I needed a high level of functionality. What I have come to terms with is that I don’t want to spend my time on the very technical aspects of managing my own technology. I also needed to determine what I truly needed in the productivity suite.
Another thing I have been mulling over is that my laptop is a beast. It’s heavy and it has a lot of fat applications loaded on it. So as I look at this whole concept. I want to see what is tying me down to my big fat laptop.
So lets start ticking off the issues.
Mail. Once I started using Gmail I found that my life became easier. I ported my personal email addresses over as pop3 accounts, deleting the email from the server when it was downloaded. I migrated all of my legacy email up to the new account along with my calendar and contacts. During this part of the change, I also tied all of this tightly to my Google+ profile. This is the beginning of my online platform.
Documents. Everything has been moved to Google Drive. I separated my true documents from the storage of my website source code and archives. Now I’m starting to realize the benefits of having everything in the cloud. No matter where I am or on what computer I can get to 90% of what I need.
Productivity Applications. Two nights ago, I uninstalled the complete Microsoft 2013 Office Premium suite from my laptop. This was quite a freeing event for me. Now that I only have the Google Apps to use. I can commit to migrating my documents to that format. Google addresses documents, spreadsheets, presentations, drawings and forms. This takes care of a lot. For Access I can use either the spreadsheet or I have access to MySQL for heavy lifting. The other things I need to consider is Visio (I think I can use autodesk online) and project.
Blogging. I used to blog on WordPress blogs that I hosted on my own servers. Again I needed to get myself out of the technology business and concentrate on what I really wanted to accomplish with blogging. I have moved my personal blog to blogger. Redirecting my personal domain name to Google. I still have a business blog to move. I found that this was not an easy task since there is not a good permalink match between the two and the workaround was a very manual process to complete.
What’s left? I use netbeans for development. I have tried a few online IDE’s but have found them wanting. This is an application where I really need the functionality that netbeans provides. I say “need” but I have to remember that I have adapted very well with the other areas so I have to keep an open mind.
So what does this all mean to me? What have I accomplished?
I really like the ability to get to most of what I need from anywhere. I also feel like I’m leaving behind some legacy boat anchors. I am learning to use all of the social and collaborative tools of the Google suite. I’m linking Facebook, Twitter and Google+ to everything I do. I’m excited. I like being a consumer of technology.