Goodbye Microsoft, Hello Google
Over the past 4 years, I’ve been waging a passive war against all things Microsoft. Maybe I’m just bitter to still be working mainly off a 5-lb laptop “equipped” with Windows Vista (much like a donkey is equipped with a full load that will eventually break its back). Each update brings at least one noticeable new glitch. With an average of one update per month, over several years.. you get the picture. This did nothing for my productivity. In fact, the psychological stress of it all was bringing me down.
First, I got around MS Office with Open Office, a free, open-source office productivity suite comparable to Windows Office, except its free (in cost and of glitches) and open-source. Open-source means that the software is constantly being developed and improved by a network of “volunteer” software engineers (some professional, some not). The result is the most mind boggling example of virtual collaboration I can wrap my head around. And that just makes me smile inside and out.
Google has been my favorite browser and search engine for years. Want to know how to fix or do anything? “Google is your friend” is my answer. Provided you know what you are looking for, and don’t get lost in the centrifuge of information available, the Google search engine is a fabulous time saver for research. the Chrome browser isn’t perfect, but it beats the heck out of Microsoft IE (I can’t even bring myself to type the full name).
Now, Google apps are in town, as part of Google Chrome. I could go on and on about how much I love Google Apps, but I won’t, mainly because blog writing is supposed to be concise. I now happily use Google apps for everything from accounting and invoicing (Wave) to time management (StayFocusd!). I am moving to the cloud, where my information is anyway safer than on a laptop that could implode at any moment.