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Tools that I use everyday, and why I use them.

Google Docs

Portability: I can access my documents from any computer. I started using Google Docs because I had to use an XP laptop for Campus safety and didn't want to use a flash drive. 

Collaboration: Two or more people can work on the same document with updates in real-time. I found Google Docs to increase productivity even with two people working in the same room: I made all my project teams use it in my last semester at Biola, and it facilitated our workflow even with people new to it. I can imagine more efficient Torrey sessions where every person has the session's document open on the projector, and text as well as voice can be contributed by everyone in the room. 

Ease of Use: Google docs was more intuitive than anything I have used since ClarisWorks (I find Word and Pages clunky), and it finally got me to use formatting with its Control+# hot-keys (using numbers 1-4 to denote different levels), which enabled me to finally make use of automatically generated Tables of Content, and made huge documents plausible. 

Problems: It has its share of goofy bugs, but I enjoyed working around the software instead of in it: If I can't get something formatted *just right,* why bother, if I can get the same information in a different way? So for things that have specific formatting requirements and must be printed out I use Pages, for the rest, I use Google Docs. My good experience with Google Docs has led me to use Google Sites and Picasa as well. 

Wacom Bamboo Fun
When I worked for M&J Productions in 2002 I got to use Graphire tablet, and since then it has been on my list. Finally, in when preparing for the move to Kenya in 2010, I bought a Wacom tablet of my own. This is day 1, so I'm still getting used to it, and I haven't compared it to the mouse that I've been using for the last two years, but I'm already loving it more than my trackpad. I immediately put its mouse back in its box: your average optical mouse is far better, but the tablet itself is great. And I finally have a version of Photoshop on my computer again - after 8 years of graphics productivity limbo, I'm back where I was in 2001. 

Apps Josh Uses