An Essential Web Tool


Tagging on to my thoughts yesterday about life in a browser, there still is a nasty gotcha when working with files.  You’ve got this great file and you’re going to do something with it but it’s the wrong size or the wrong format or …

What to do?  What to do?  Actually, if you have enough tools installed on your computer, you might be OK.   But…

If that’s a problem you have to endure, then you need to check out CloudConvert.  I was drawn to explore by its tagline “convert anything to anything”.  Who wouldn’t want a service like that?  Off I went to check it out.

The site claims to support 123 formats and I was impressed immediately by a support for “ebook”!  The format page gives a complete listing.

How to use it?  It’s really easy.

Step 1:  Give CloudConvert your file.

I was impressed that I didn’t have to “drop the file here” like on so many other resources.  Just drop it on the page.  I slid my browser to the left, grabbed a file and dragged it to the page.  Step 1 done.

The file was a .jpg file.  I decided to give it an easy test.  Please make it a .gif file.

Step 2:

Step 3:

Give me the converted file.

What a great set of options!  I’ve used services like this in the past and mailing the converted file typically is the only option.  Since I would probably import the file into a document or a presentation, sending it to Google Drive makes a great deal of sense.

This utility is definitely a keeper.  Whether you’re using standalone applications or working in a browser, dealing with file formats is a common task.  They may well be your answer!

Signing Off


There’s nothing like learning something new and I had it happen to me on the weekend.  My newest teacher, Sharon, needed me to sign off on something and forwarded me a PDF file to sign.

Sigh, I thought.  I was in the mobile office here at dougpete labs.  It has a relaxing chair and a television in it.

So, in the worst Web 1.0 thinking, I figured that I’d have to get up, go to dougpete labs on the other side of the house, send the PDF file to my printer (hope that I have ink in it), sign it, and then fax it in.

But, Sharon said that the easiest way would be to use HelloSign.

Huh?

Well, she obviously knows what she’s talking about so off I go to download the HelloSign app for my iPad.  There also is an Android version.

This, my friends, opened a whole new world for me.  I launched the application and saw the option to import a document.  In fact, I could import from email or Google Drive.  Could it be this easy?  It turns out that it is.  Once the document is in HelloSign, you have these options for adding new content.

How sweet is this?

I have the option of writing (using my finger), typing, inserting a check mark, or inserting the date.

So, you doctor the document and a Send button at the top right of the screen attaches the document to an email message ready for sending.  The biggest time taker in the whole process was waiting for the application to download.

This is definitely a utility that I’ll hang on to.  Until now, when I stumbled upon a PDF file, it has always meant moving to a traditional computer with a traditional application.  Now, I can do it from mobile?  Again, sweet.

As it turns out, HelloSign also had a website offering even more functionality like team members, creating reusable documents, etc.

And I have my teacher Sharon, to thank for all of this.  Thank you so much, Sharon.

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