I’m sure many of you already know about this, but I ran across this really cool program a few weeks ago and just have to tell you about it because I am loving it. Here’s the thing: I’m a knitter. I’m a knitter who knits all over – on the bus, on the train, in line, at restaurants, at work, etc. Sometimes, I’m a knitter who forgot to bring the pattern with her, or who printed the pattern but somehow left the most important page of it at home, or who is improvising and needs a guideline to work from RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE. I have an iPhone so I do have access to the internet, but this only works while I have decent cell coverage and sometimes web browsing speeds are painfully slow. And sometimes, I just don’t want the hassle of searching and browsing for a pattern on the itty bitty screen. (I do not have an iPad, nor do I have plans to buy one.)
Enter Dropbox. This handy-dandy program acts like a “My Documents” folder that I can take with me, and the best part is that it auto-syncs between as many devices as you want! I downloaded the program on my laptop at home and signed up for an account (it’s free), dragged a bunch of knitting patterns in PDF and MS Word format into the Dropbox folder on my computer, and VOILA! All those patterns are now hosted magically somewhere out in etherspace and by launching the app on my iPhone, I have instant access to all those PDFs and Word docs. Or I can log on to the internet from anywhere (at the library, for example) and add or retrieve files from my Dropbox.
This works for photos, too – so I can take pictures on my iPhone, pull them into Dropbox, and they magically sync so that I can access the photos on my laptop at home without having to plug in my phone or deal with email transfers. This is extra handy if you are traveling, as it acts like a backup of your stuff in case something happens to your phone or iPad. You can also do all kinds of cool backflips like linking to Twitter or Facebook, or using a Public Folder to share your stuff with other people. Or you can just take your knitting patterns with you to the local yarn store to make sure you buy enough yarn for your next project.
Here’s a screen shot of the app on my phone so you can see how clean and simple the layout is: