Hey everyone — sorry about the posting delay. Saturday and Sunday were very low-computing days, so I didn’t experience terribly many epiphanies about how I can “do more with less” or what-have-you.
Here’s what I did discover over the past few days.
1. Be wary of editing docs in Quickoffice.
This is *definitely* user error, but a word of warning is warranted nonetheless. I was working on a paper for one of my courses — typing out five pages of notes — only to open my Chromebook once again to find everything absolutely gone. This is because the Chromebook has two very similar office suites built-in.
The first, of course, is Google Docs. Let me be clear: anything you write in a Google Doc on a Chromebook will be automatically saved as it would on any other computer.
The second, though, is Quickoffice, a recent Google acquisition that allows for brilliant compatibility with Microsoft Office documents. The issue is that the Chromebook version (at least, in my experience) is a VIEWER and not a true editor. You are definitely allowed to make changes, there’s just no automatic saving. In the future, I’m going to quadruple-check that I’m working in Google Docs to ensure I don’t make the same mistake again.
2. Chrome OS is dead simple. Which is a good thing.
I like to bring my own computer when I’m in a meeting, in lecture, or in transit. My Chromebook has received a ton of exposure, even in these past few days. A number of people have been like, “oh, look at the Mac guy swapping over to the dark side, eh?” forgetting that Acer, perhaps best know for Windows computers, also is a leading manufacturer of Chromebooks. After showing people around a bit, it’s clear that Chrome OS is on to something: working from the browser alone can be a bit daunting at first, but it’s a great intermediary between the small size (and low price) of a tablet, and the creative power of a larger laptop. Of course, you won’t be running Photoshop on a Chromebook, but you *can* comfortably write a paper, send emails, or work with some of the more intense free software out there (R, LibreOffice, GIMP, etc).
Alright — that’s about all of the interesting stuff I’ve discovered over the weekend, but here’s one of the most exciting bits. I’m planning to devote one day (or a few days) each to explore what options we have for photo editing, communication, and document creation in Chrome OS. Then, I plan to spend another few days on some modifications I’ve made to my Chromebook to make it fit my needs, even as a general-purpose machine with a full desktop.
If you have any questions or recommendations, please shoot me a tweet — I’m at @brandon_mn
Thanks again for reading!
*** This is a part of my Chromebook Challenge series. Take a look at it from the start here.