When I find myself talking to non-geeks, I try to give them simple suggestions as to how they might use technology to solve their problems. (Normally I have too many of my own! ) Most of the time the exercise is for naught, but what it does do is give me practice on articulating ideas as to how I might solve my own problems in simple yet effective ways.
Yesterday I was talking to someone about how to create a Gmail account for the sole purpose of backing up critical files. I had been mulling it over, and decided to see how this might work. I suppose that I should have some degree of concern over the fact that the files that I am dealing with are not encrypted in some way, or that there is someone at Google who has the time and interest to see what E-Mail I am sending to myself, but I quickly calculated that the odds were small, and who really cared other than me, so here’s what I did:
a. Created new E-Mail account on Gmail ( p.s. I have 99 more to give away, and when they are gone, I am sure Google would only be too happy to give me more!)
b. Then looked at the problems I have had:
1. What happens when your computer blows up? Ahh…question 1, what in the world was I running when it did. Quick answer, run Belarc advisor and put the file on the Gmail account. That when if I have to reinstall things rather than looking around for some piece of paper with the list, I just go to backup E-Mail files on Gmail and whammo the list is in hand. I just did the whole process, took less than about 3 minutes, and my complete Belarc profile of what is running on my ThinkPad is setting at Google Land ready for me to pluck it off should things go bad ( and they will…) Cost of the exercise zero, and while hardly life insurance, it does make me feel better about what happens when it all blows up again.
2. Now to forge on with things like various settings, Quicken files, etc.
3. Create ActiveWord for E-Mail to backup Gmail account…. done!
Ahhh….the marvels of technology…