Work on a Cloudy Day

I’ve been in a few discussions at the office lately on the subject of collaboration. How can we be even more inclusive than we’ve become particularly since the agency’s move downtown let us work from a new workstation floor plan? How can we be more efficient with our file sharing?

At the same time, there’s been a lot of chatter about cloud computing of late. Particularly with last week’s ad:tech conference in San Francisco (covered by a team of my coworkers from Colle+McVoy on this blog) and the Ad Age Digital held in New York the week before that (also covered by coworkers, here). No doubt, the recent launch of iPad–which relies on the ‘Net much like, if not more than, the MacBook Air–is helping drive even more project traffic into the cloud.


Image courtesy of turtlemom4bacon (Flickr image 2046347762)

With this as my backdrop, I decided to check out some clouds of my own as I kicked off  a new assignment last week. My version of cumulonimbus? Google Docs and Google Wave. Two cloud computing applications which I’ve heard plenty about–the former more than the latter–but which I’ve never actually used myself.

The main project requirement that makes this new assignment particularly suitable to stick up into a cloud? Multiple teammates at the office need to access, contribute to and share this work. And, particularly at the outset, we all need to make sure we’re on the same page as far as the details. Sending around a document for member-by-member update/review is not efficient. And with some team members traveling a bit over a specified period of time, VPNing in to the server isn’t most ideal.

My initial thoughts:

  • Bummed Google Docs doesn’t let users track their updates the way we’ve grown accustomed seeing updates displayed/printed in Microsoft Word.
  • Excited that Google Wave apparently has a better tracking functionality than Docs.
  • Bummed Google Wave is taking such a long time to approve the new teammates I’m adding to the project wave.

So after the first three days…

Cloud 2 : Mandle 1

But I’m awaiting the official start to the work week tomorrow morning in the hopes that I can change this score big time.