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In search of space

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Do you need unlimited space to download, store files and create archives that won’t slow your computer down? Look no further, John Allan has been searching...

Times change. Somewhere in the loft, I still have the first mini-computer I ever bought. I used to take it everywhere. It wrote letters, kept my diary, calculated my finances, stored addresses and sermon notes. Loads of Youthwork articles have been written on it too. All my friends admired it and wanted one; somebody I knew even went out and ordered six for his company.

You could just do so much with it, because the memory was massive! 132 kilobytes! Well, today the cheapest refurbished laptop you can buy at PC World has 524,288,000 kilobytes of memory inside it (I just checked). I must be getting old (yes, the policemen look younger too). But don’t miss the point: in youth work these days, with movie files, digital music and complicated Powerpoints moving around the Internet all the time, we’re all humping massive stacks of gigabytes from Point A to Point B without really thinking about it.

So it’s important that you can do this efficiently. We’ve all suffered the experience of sitting for hours waiting for a vital movie clip to download, or trying to cram an essential presentation on to a flash drive only to see the dread message ‘Destination file full...’ But fortunately, there’s an Internet solution to just about every file-shifting problem you might ever confront. For example: sometimes you need to transfer files to your mobile phone. How do you do it? Filetac is the easiest answer; upload the file to their site, and then transferring it to your phone is lightning fast. And that’s not all: you can also store stuff permanently on Filetac too, sending automatic e-mails to your young people or team members to tell them how to find it, and you can shrink up to thirty files into a zip for people to download. All the pictures and sounds of last year’s youth group programme in one handy file!

Suppose you want to send your file to several different storage points, so that people can download it from various places? After all, you don’t want too many querulous ‘I tried your link but it didn’t work’ replies. Well, UploadGround will send your file off to twelve different filesharing networks at once, so one of them should work! Also, if you want to store a really, really massive file, Upit.to has no storage limits, allowing a whopping 5 Gb per file. So does File Dropper.

What if you want to begin an online storage dump called ‘Youth group History’ or ‘All my talks’, which you can add to (or subtract from) over time? That’s so easy with Drop.io, which we’ve mentioned before. Admittedly, you have only 100 Mb per drop... but you can create an infinite number of them. And every single one will hold 776 times as much as my ‘really big’ mini-computer. Times change.

February 2010
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