Drive, folks. Google re-named it’s suite Drive, and not ‘Docs’. But it’s pretty much the same thing.
Along with something like Dropbox, I can’t think of a tool – I guess this counts as a DH tool – that I use more and which works so well. Google Drive, if you have a Google account for mail and the like (I also use calendar for just about everything), is a great way to have documents, excel files, and just a bunch of your stuff available anywhere there’s a computer with internet access. I suppose you wouldn’t want to put sensitive info up on this, as it technically belongs to Google – and can be seen by the NSA (but they can see everything, right? Hi Team! Nothing to see here!). It’s an alternative to e-mailing yourself a paper you need to print out as you can upload documents – they do get converted into Google Drive docs, but these are compatible with Microsoft Office suite programs, so fret not.
Just like a computer in the cloud / ether / someone else’s server, you have files and folders and documents in them.
The other just essential aspect of Google Drive is the sharing thing. You can share documents or even whole folders with multiple other Google users. This makes collaboration super easy. Each person can write and edit – and explain their reasoning with notes in the margins – whenever they have time. To create a group presentation, say, you don’t really have to meet. You can just do it all on Google Drive, each when she or he has time.
Here you can see I’m sharing a presentation with three other people. What’s also amazing, it that you can chat with all of the people working on a document within the interface of the document. That floored me when I first discovered that feature.
So, if you’re ok with having some information on the web – again, Hi NSA! – then Google Docs is a GREAT DH tool. For sure.