Time has come for CloudFella Revolution
A brief history of file managers
Browsing files is one of the oldest human-computer type of interaction: since MS-DOS powered PC landed in our offices we are very comfortable to run command line commands (like the ones shown on the right)
Then MS Windows came along and we started browsing directories in windows, which is nicer and maybe faster but relies always on choosing a directory first and then listing the content, whatever it is.
After few more years MS Wndows, OSX and Linux Desktops distributions introduced special folders for Documents, Images and Videos so to streamline the default locations for certain types of files and make it easier to find them, when needed. I personally never used them, preferring my own custom locations for docs, images and videos: nice try, though!
An internal search feature was later added to the major desktop distributions but the problem with that was that searching among hundreds of thousands of files in a sequential mode was too slow.
Apple’s approach was the same but implemented in a different way, with Spotlight indexing in the background all files in the system so that it was able to quickly return a search query: brilliant!
Here comes the Cloud…
Next revolution came with Cloud Computing and the introduction of Cloud Storage: now you can put your docs, images, video, code etc. in different places in the cloud, but accessing your data still comes down to folders (directories) and listing files inside them. What makes user experience even worse compared to the past is that each of these services provide their own folder to access the files in the cloud, hence adding another directory level to browse in order to get to your files: really not right…
Parallel to the Cloud revolution, personal computing went mobile: with powerful devices like the iPhones now is possible to execute tasks that in the past only a desktop computer could do. However, accessing files from our smartphones is still done in the old way: choose a folder locally or from a cloud storage’s app and browse browse browse until you find what you need. This is not good, and is quite frustrating when you perform directory browsing from a small device: definitely not a good human-computer interaction…
Also, search feature within cloud storage apps (when implemented) implies at least two network requests (send search term to the server and receive search results) and could be slow depending on the network conditions.
CloudFella, the solution!
We definitely need a better solution! CloudFella app for the iPhone provides exactly that: a much better approach to access all your data in the Cloud! CloudFella allows users to link together several Cloud storage services and indexes the Cloud storage content: this translates in super fast search results and all your files in the Cloud are at your fingertips, wherever you are and wherever they are!
Besides search, CloudFella will provide a graphical view for all your files in the Cloud: from the Dashboard you will see, thanks to interactive charts, what is the distribution of your files (e.g. how many docs, how many images and where they are).
Just click on one of the “slices” of the pie chart and you will access to the list of the type of files you are looking for, regardless on what cloud storage they are located: this is new!
CloudFella offers also the traditional directory browsing approach, but even here the app provides a better solution. Because CloudFella indexes not only the files name but also other metadata, it is capable to recreate internally the directory structure of your cloud storage without any network connection: blazing fast!
CloudFella will also show you with a clear chart your storage cloud footprint: you will be able to identify the biggest files in your cloud with a single click and delete them if clean up is needed. Nobody is able to provide this service: CloudFella does!
From the dashboard you will be able to access to a fourth chart that will show you the ‘age’ of your data in the cloud: sometimes we forget what we have in online storages and CloudFella provides a wealth of information to track down what we saved and when, allowing easy and fast cleanup when needed.
CloudFella allows you to download and view files stored in the Cloud and will save them in the app’s Vault: from there they are always available locally so even when your phone has limited or no data coverage. You will be able to share these files on the social network, email them as attachment or print them via Air print. It’s like having a mobile office…in your pocket!
One more feature to present is the duplicate finder: having indexed all your files in the Cloud CloudFella is able to search for duplicates in your online storage accounts without accessing the network: this is great both when you need to free some space from Cloud Storage and when you want to look for different revisions of the same file saved in different Cloud Storages.
CloudFella provides the ultimate Cloud file manager experience for your iPhone: albeit this is a space with many players, nobody come even close to provide CloudFella’s features. Will explain why in the next posts.
Until then… enjoy CloudFella app for iPhone, and welcome to the Cloud Revolution!