Life in the Cloud: Day Eighteen (or There Must Be Some Kind of Way Out of Here)

The lavafloor experiment continues, but I’ve not had much new stuff to report in the past week.  Things keep cruising along and I keep running into the same snags.  Microsoft Web Apps are reliable and could theoretically take the place of their desktop counterparts, but lack some of the robust features of the desktop versions.  Google Docs, as well, lacks the features I need.  The other tools I use still require me to step on the lavafloor more often than I’d like.  I still find myself launching GIMP or Photoshop for image editing because it’s just so much easier to get in there and do it.  I still open up Notepad++ when I’m working with hard code, although both SourceKit and Drive Notepad show promise.

But it’s not just about what I can do or what I plan to do.  I’ve come to realize that I could feasibly find a way to do practically anything in the cloud.  I’m a geek.  We geeks figure out ways to do things. That’s why we’re geeks.  But what about the students?  That’s why I started this experiment in the first place, and over the past 2 and a half weeks, I’ve come to two primary conclusions:

  1. Yes.  It is possible for an average computer user to perform most if not all of their normal daily processes in the cloud, it is not simple,and it’s not intuitive, but it’s doable.
  2. We are not yet at the point where we could reasonably expect first-year community college students to perform all of their work in the cloud.
  3. We should continue to explore ways in which we can get students to become more cloud-reliant , and it stands to reason that within the next 18 months to 2 years, the average student will be able to do all of their work in the cloud.

I will continue to do as much as possible in the cloud and will continue to explore new options and opportunities for a fully cloud-based existence, I don’t see any benefit in continuing the 30 day lavafloor experiment.  There are more pressing issues which demand my attention.

So I’m going to wrap up the lavafloor experiment 12 days early, somewhat singed, occasionally burned, but all the wiser from the exploration.

In the coming weeks and months, this blog will return to its initial concept, that of providing information and links to web-based resources which can (hopefully) help folks in higher ed find more efficient ways to present and share content on the web.





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