After my recent purchase of an iPad, I found myself now looking for files on four different devices (the others being a desktop PC, a laptop PC and a Blackberry Torch smartphone). That was until I installed two apps on all of the devices, Evernote and Dropbox. (Both are FREE!)
Evernote is good for saving just about any media. If I see a picture of something, if I want to save a weblink bookmark accessible from anywhere, if I start thinking of a new blog post or new ideas, I put it in my Evernote. It has tremendously simplified my ability to maintain multiple lists.
Dropbox is essentially a universally accessible file folder. You can copy any file you want to share (including publicly). Hook me up with a referral if you decide to sign up and they will give both of us extra space. :)
Like any kind of cloud-based technology, Evernote and Dropbox have their own limitations. Your ability to upload and synchronize is dependent on your connectivity. Though an Evernote Premium Account allows you to access your notebooks offline which is handy.
In terms of bugs, the only thing I’ve encountered with these two applications thus far are errors accessing and editing files from Evernote for Blackberry.
It was an incredible experience graduating at the height of the dot-com era. At the University of Waterloo, tons of different companies would come onto campus to recruit students, there was quite a demand for engineering and computer science grads. There was lots of free food and booze, recruiter events were party central when you’re a starving student.
I could not ask for anything more out of the first job I got after graduating, it was for a small company called MobileQ. Had that awesome startup feel with a pool table and foosball table, it was down on King St. East in a brick loft before moving up to Yonge and Bloor. The product was an XML-based design platform for mobile devices. You could design your app from GUI-based (think Visio) software and it would serve code appropriate to the device making the request. HTML, HDML, WML, even VoiceXML depending on the device. Since I was a tester, I had a plethora of devices at my disposal to see what the application looked like on said various devices. There would be a new phone or PDA on the market and I would be one of the people that got to play with it first. As a device nerd, it was pretty fun going to work every day. Got to live the work-hard, play-hard lifestyle everyone was raving about.
Because I graduated at the height of the dot-com boom and was surrounded by stories of magical stock options, it became a new goal to one day participate in an IPO (initial public offering). Thankfully I did not wait long after MobileQ because I was referred to a job at a growing company called Workbrain in 2002.
Workbrain was a great company to work for in those days because it was a good blend between startup and corporate. I think I was employee 250, when I left they were at 700+. Their product was pretty solid: workforce software, sometimes referred to as HRM (human resources management). They had huge clients like Target, the Gap and McDonalds. My job was QA Team Lead of the Schedule Optimization module, software that uses linear regression to most efficiently allocate your workforce with an ability to add constraints imposed by labour laws and employee/manager schedule restrictions (distributing workload by seniority, etc.).
I didn’t become an overnight millionaire but the options did manage to turn themselves into something significant, I had asked for double the options when negotiating the employment offer (score!). What can I say, my mom had passed away earlier in the year so I was feeling reckless and bold, who I’m told fortune favors. The best lesson I learned was that you can achieve great things as an organization by recognizing and rewarding your employees and giving them a stake in it too.