For those of you who have worked on group projects remotely, you probably already know how awesome Google Docs is.
Side note: Google Docs has been renamed Google Drive since I first drafted this post (oops).
Well, for those who don’t know or haven’t used it yet, let me tell you why you should be using Google Drive:
- It’s easy to collaborate. You can share documents with friends and everyone can view the same thing on their own computers — no need for constantly uploading and emailing a revised document.
- Every change is automatically saved, perfect for anyone who obsessively saves every 5 minutes like I do due to paranoia of my document crashing.
- While you edit a document, everyone sees the live changes.
- You can view old revisions in case you want to return to previous ideas.
- When a document is shared with you, you can view it even if you don’t have a Google/Gmail account.
- You can control the levels of access: who can edit, can comment, and/or can view.
- You can access your files from anywhere you have internet — no need to worry about carrying a USB drive!
What this really came in handy for was making our travel plans and then sharing them. Carissa and I discussed our ideal calendars separately in one document. Once we agreed on a route and itinerary, we shared it with our parents and some friends who were also traveling Europe, in case our paths would cross (and they did!). Whenever we booked the next hostel, we would update the dates and contact information for where we were staying. This way, our parents always had the details in case of an emergency.