25 Google Drive Tips You’ve Probably Never Heard Before
Post on 21-May-2015
DESCRIPTIONRecently I moved over from Dropbox to Google Drive and found a few unexpected benefits. At first I had a little trouble managing the space since the 1TB on my Google Drive was bigger than my HDD, but after I got that sorted I started to learn some of the deeper features of Google Drive, some of which are pretty cool. Below is a list of the top tips and tricks I have learned from playing with Google Drive over the last few months.
- 1. process.st http://www.process.st/2014/10/25-google-drive-tips-youve-probably-never-heard-before/25 Google Drive Tips Youve Probably Never Heard BeforeVinay PatankarRecently I moved over from Dropbox to Google Drive and found a few unexpected benefits. At first I had a littletrouble managing the space since the 1TB on my Google Drive was bigger than my HDD, but after I got that sorted Istarted to learn some of the deeper features of Google Drive, some of which are pretty cool. Below is a list of the toptips and tricks I have learned from playing with Google Drive over the last few months.Work Well with Others
2. Google drive got its early breaks in the market by being far superior at collaborating with others than any other toolout there. This still holds true today. You can have a ton of people working on a document simultaneously and theexperience is smooth. Doesnt matter what device theyre on, you can always see exactly what everyone is doing inreal time. Plus see a clear history of activity so you can easily tell who was responsible for deleting that cell. Currentlydocuments are capped to 200 collaborators with only 50 being allowed on a document at any one time, but for 99% ofusers this is more than sufficient.Publicly Share DocumentsNot only can you share and collaborate with people you invite, but you can also make documents public. You canmake them public to view or edit, so that anonymous users can edit your documents. I have seen some coolexamples of public documents being used, like Pieter Levels who used it to source the initial list for Nomads List.Control Access Levels for SecurityJust because you want to share and work with others, doesnt mean you necessarily want people messing with yosh*t. Because of that, Google has graciously given us the ability to control permissions on documents. There are fourlevels of permissions to choose from including Owners, Editors, Commentors and Viewers. 3. Chat While CollaboratingTo give collaboration a further kick, you can even have conversations around particular documents and spreadsheets.Just click the speech bubble icon on the top right to start a chat. Anyone who is working on the spreadsheet canparticipate in the chat, a great place to keep document-centric discussions.Search by PersonWhen you are a heavy Google Drive user, you can have a bunch of incoming documents being shared with you.Sometimes its hard to remember exactly what the name of the document was. Dont worry, there is a solution for thistoo. First you can check out the Shared with me folder for a list of documents that have been shared with you Ifthat list is too long, just do a search for the persons name or email and it will bring up a list of all the documents youare working onEnhance your Experience with Add-Ons 4. If youre looking for a functionality boost to your documents, take a look at the add-ons. There is a huge range ofaddons to try for both docs and sheets. Check out Avery Lable Merge, EasyBib, MailMerge by Mailchimp and Gliffy tostart with.Dont forget the AppsThere is also a whole directory of Apps that work directly with Google Drive. Actually we are planing to build one forProcess Street so you can view your Process Street templates straight from Google Drive. Try Cloudconvert forconverting files and DocuSign for signing documents. Google Drive Apps are not to be confused with Google Apps(actually now called Google Work) the Office Collaboration suite.Use Drag and Drop to Upload 5. Google Drive has a big red upload button on the interface, right next to the Create button for making new files.However, you dont have to go through the steps of clicking it and finding a file or folder to upload. You can drag anddrop files from Windows Explorer or the MacOS Finder right into Google Drive and theyll auto-upload.Use Optical Character Recognition (OCR) to Turn Images/PDFs into TextI just found out about this one recently. One of my favorite aspects of Evernote is its ability to do OCR on images andPDFs then make them searchable. Looks like Google is headed in this direction too allowing you to OCR your imagesand PDFs. I havent played around with this too much but from what I read it makes them searchable and editable(the PDFs at least).Use Mobile App to Scan and OCR 6. This is also heading into Evernotes space. Use the Google Drive app to take pictures of documents, signs, businesscards etc and have the OCR scan them and make them searchable. Again I use Evernote for this already and haventtested it yet but if you are not using Evernote could be worth checking out.Use Bookmark Links for Quick CreationTo add a quick create shortcut to your bookmark bar, simply drag the below links into your bookmarks bar: 7. Create Document http://drive.google.com/document/createCreate Spreadsheet http://drive.google.com/spreadsheet/createUse Drive on your Desktop like DropboxThis may not be big news anymore but some people dont realize that you can actually use Drive the same way asDropbox. Actually I just moved all my files over from Dropbox to Drive. The pricing is about the same but you canconsolidate all your documents, spreadsheets and files into one place, plus Google has a much wider range offeatures than Dropbox. If you are looking for a file syncing or backup solution its definitely worth looking at GoogleDrive.Use Offline Mode to Access your Documents on the GoNot only can you access your files offline using the Dropbox-esq desktop app, you can also allow offline accessthrough your Chrome Browser.Clip Web Pages to Drive like Evernote 8. I love Evernote and use it daily as my infinite shoe-box. But if you have not got on the Evernote train yet or you justlike the idea of everything being in the same place, you can use the Chrome Extension called Save to Google Drivethat acts kind of like a sub-standard Evernote Web Clipper, allowing you to save pages and articles directly to Drive.You cant just copy out the text part however, it will save the whole site as PNG, the HTML source code or transform itto a Google doc, killing the formatting. Not very useful if you already use Evernote but still an option.Easy Integration with GmailAnother huge reason to switch to Google Drive is if you are heavy Gmail user. The first big benefit is when attachingfiles. You can add files directy from drive without needing to wait for them to upload, plus you can send MUCH largerfiles, try 10GB instead of the standard 25mb.Search Drive Directly from Gmail 9. I also mentioned this one in my earlier post, but you can use the search bar in Gmail to search through Drive.Something you would expect from the worlds leader in search.Dedicated Mobile Apps for EditingAnother cool and recent addition to the Google Drive feature list is stand alone apps for Docs and Spreadsheets. Thisis great if, for example, you spend a lot of time on Spreadsheets and want a dedicated, fast app specifically for editingand managing them. They work great on iPhone and I assume they work well on Android too but havent tested them.Auto Convert to Google Docs FormatI have a love-hate relationship with this feature. You can upload MS Word and Excel documents to Drive and it will 10. give you the option to auto-convert them into the Google Docs format. While converting the document makes it easierto collaborate around and edit from your mobile, Google Docs and Spreadsheets still dont have the depth of featuresand customization the MS Office desktop apps have. So this can cause you to lose formatting on your documents.One of my biggest pet peves from this is that you lose the color on cells in excel.View Any Document Straight from the BrowserGoogle Drive continues to impress me with it ability to open almost any format of file in the browser. The other day itopened an Adobe Illustrator file for me to view straight in the browser. Basically any type of document, image,spreadsheet, pdf, video, audio file etc I dont know the full list but I cant remember a time I have had a file not openin Drive. If you areUse Forms to Collect DataThere are a bunch of form builders out there, but Google is completely free with Google Drive for unlimited use. Plusit integrates very nicely with spreadsheets. Each form entry can be added as a row in a spreadsheet and you canthen pull that data into other tabs/sheets and manipulate it automatically. Pretty cool.Make Pretty Pictures in Drive 11. If you want a quick and easy way to add images to your documents, try the built in Drawing tool. Go to the Insertmenu in Docs, Sheets, or Slides and select Drawing. Youll get a scaled back version of the Drawing app that makesit a breeze to include your art. Its no Photoshop but it will work just fine for the basics.Double Full Screen?Click on the view menu then select the Full Screen option. This will remove the apps toolbar and options giving you aclean writing screen. Go into Double Full Screen Mode by hitting F11 to take your browser full screen.Make Research a Breeze with the Research Pane 12. Use the research pane (in Docs only) to do a Google search from inside the document screen saving you fromnavigating to a different page and getting distracted by all that click bait. Pull info from the search and have Googlecreate an auto footnote citation in your document. To access press Hit Ctrl+Alt+Shift+I.Auto-Generate your Table of ContentsYou can use this feature to auto create your TOC. You must format your headings correctly however for this to work.Check these instructions for a guide on formatting your documents correctly for this purpose.View Every Single Keyboard ShortcutIf you want to become a power user of any piece of software you have to master the keyboard shortcuts. To really 13. become a Google Drive ninja, learn the keyboard shortcuts. Access a list of all the shortcuts by hitting Ctrl+/.And thats it for my list of Google Drive tips, if you know any I missed out please leave them in the comments.