We released part 1 of the 20 awesome cloud services that you've never hear of last week. Lucky for you, the last 10 services are cooler and more useful than the first 10. This is a must read if you enjoy reading about what the cloud services have in store for us in the future because this is a teaser. I hope that you are prepared to get a glimpse of the future!
- OhLife (personal journaling) – There are tons of people who want to keep journals, but forget. OhLife will send you an email once per day and ask you how your day went. It will then take your response and put it as a journal entry. OhLife has reported that 50% of users add an entry at least every other day. It is a pretty basic service, but similar to FollowUpThen, it gets the job done. Grade: B+. I see this as a similar service to HabitForge. I’m not sure how big the market is for writing journals, but if you are interested in that, then use OhLife.
- Prezi (presentation software) – Prezi has already caught its way onto the college scene. Multiple students have used it to present in my classes. Prezi is a fun alternative to Powerpoint. It’s basically a virtual whiteboard that you can put your presentation on as a whole, rather than slides. Rather than present boring slide by slide in front of a group of people, Prezi will give you an interactive way to show everyone. The downside to Prezi is that it is hard to print and the full package can cost up to $160/year. Grade: A-. Prezi is a very cool change of pace tool. There are two things holding it back from getting an A+ rating. 1. The fact that you have to pay for the service. 2. Printing slides is a hassle. Other than that it is pretty awesome and you should try it out on your next presentation. I cannot guarantee that you will use it more than once because you would have to pay for more features, but you will have some fun using the creative tools.
- Primadesk (online account dashboard) – Primadesk unifies all online services into one layout. If you are familiar with the application Dropbox, then you already understand Primadesk. Primadesk will connect all of your services together into 1 easy layout. You can search all of your documents in one place and easily transfer them to where you want them to go. Once again, we have here a very simple service with no downloads or uploads. Primadesk is only free for up to five accounts or 1GB of storage. That means that unless you are a very simple internet person, then you will most likely have more than 5 accounts that need to be linked. There are always times where you need to transfer photos from Facebook to Flickr easily or Facebook to Skype rather than going through the whole, long process. Primadesk just emerged from beta testing earlier this year and is still known to be very buggy. Grade: B. Primadesk is great for the office. You can hook up with Google Docs, email accounts, and Dropbox into one place and save some time. You no longer need 3 applications or windows open at the same time.
- Soluto (PC Maintenance) – Everyone could use Soluto. Computers are buggy, and NSK is here to fix those issues for you, but for those small, minor issues, Soluto is the program for you. Soluto is a click and repair system to help maintain your own PC as well as up to five friends computers. On top of that, you can also remotely install popular apps onto your computers. Don’t expect Soluto to fix your entire computer, but Soluto will increase the speed and space of your computer in a very conservative manner. You won’t lose any important files or anything like that. It is very informative and will give you some good graphs to show how your computer has improved. Soluto uses a cloud system and finds how other computers with the same problem have fixed it and attempts to fix your problem the same way. Grade:B+. I believe that this is more of a future success rather than a present success. While Soluto has a great idea and it has been proven to work, it is still buggy.
- Squarespace (website creation, hosting, and management) – Simply enough, if you want to create a fresh, sleek website, then use Squarespace to do it. Squarespace 6 is very up to date and will give your information a nice look. It’s ad free and only costs $96 per year for 2GB of storage. The people visiting your site will love the way it looks and you will love the way it works once you get used to it. It is known to be complex at first for people who aren’t familiar with creating websites, but it becomes a fun tool to use once you get the hang of it. Squarespace 6 is a major upgrade over Squarespace 5 and although it didn’t come with the community forum, it is well on its way to being one of the best website creators you can find. Grade: B+. Squarespace 6 should have a forum. I am not sure why it doesn’t, but website creation is definitely something that should have a forum. But if you are advanced and have had experience at this, then Squarespace will be a breeze for you. The beginners may take longer to understand how it works, but they will learn to love it.
- Task Rabbit (errand-help referral) – Everyone has been on craigslist before. It has proven to be a great place to find any transaction possible. Task Rabbit is a place where you can find people to do everyday tasks that you either don’t want to do or can’t find the time to do. The “rabbits” who take care of your work are employees of Task Rabbit and have had background checks so they are reliable. You will never actually hand the Task Rabbits the money, as it is all done online. It makes it very easy and simple to understand. Task Rabbit seems to be good for the people who want tasks done, but can tend to be a dumping ground for jobs that no one wants. There have been a few reported cases of tasks being unfulfilled. Most of the people have had great success with Task Rabbit and are willing to recommend it. Grade: B. Those annoying tasks will now get done without you worrying about them. Most people who posted jobs to have done have had great success with them and recommended Task Rabbit.
- Timehop (scrapbooking) – One of the coolest services in this last 10 has to be Timehop. Timehop sends you a daily email with all social networking from exactly one year ago to the day. It is a great tool to bring back memories that you may have forgotten. It is said to work flawlessly, which is very good compared to some of the other programs on this list. The only real downside is that Twitter and Texts can delete themselves if you send too many within the year. But if you are the occasional tweeter, then you shouldn’t have a problem because it takes over 3,000 tweets per year to start before is erases over the old ones. Grade: A. Timehop is my personal favorite of the 20 services. The downside being that twitter and SMS messages might not be saved from a year ago, but you will still have Facebook among others. Timehop will remind you to live in the present because surely you will be surprised that some reminders were a full year ago. So go out and make more memories.
- TinEye (image search) – TinEye finds higher resolution versions of images that you perhaps cannot quite make out. It also will bring you different versions of the picture that you can spend several hours looking at. It is a fun tool to use if you are bored and easily entertainable. It is actually just an extension for Firefox or Google Chrome. It has over 1 billion images in its database so your picture will most likely be found. Google actually came out with their own reverse image search that has been reviewed better than TinEye. Grade: B-. Google reverse image search is the way to go. TinEye created the path for reverse image searching, but the second Google got a hold of that idea and they ran with it. TinEye should be able to give you sufficient results though if you do not want to use Google.
- ToS;DR (user rights) – Another non memorable name similar to IFTTT. ToS;DR keeps track of terms of service and puts them into easy to understand, bulletpoints. This can be used for personal reasons as well as business reasons. This is as simple a service as they come and only has one use. It is very easy to understand and has received very good reviews. They grade the terms with a green thumbs up, or a grey neutral symbol, or an orange thumbs down. Grade B. This service grew on me. When I first read it, I didn’t think that I would ever use this. I am not sure how many people actually read the terms of service for things, but it is probably a good idea to a least get an idea on what you are agreeing to. For that reason, use ToS;DR so you aren’t surprised by anything.
After reviewing all 20 of the cloud services, I had only heard of one before, Prezi. I had used similar services to a few, but overall they do seem to be useful and work. At some point in your life, I’m sure that you had a need for at least 80% of what these applications offer. The app world is growing and so is cloud technology. These services will help you get on the bandwagon early and make your life a lot easier as well as better. It is now up to you to decide whether you will utilize them or not.