Last week, I wrote about the power of USB computing, under which you can simply load a cheap USB drive in anyone’s computer with free software and make it work like your own, with a desktop-like appearance. This secures your data privacy and helps you carry applications on the go, and in fact, substitutes for a laptop in many ways.
I had mentioned MojoPac (www.mojopac.com) as a software platform that can be freely downloaded to create a desktop virtualisation on your USB drive, but forgot to add that some of the key end-user open-source applications that go with it are available elsewhere. One site where you can get an entire suite that includes an OpenOffice software bundle, a PDF reader, an MP3 player and even an Internet messenger called Pidgin is PortableApps (www.portableapps.com).
Another great site (www.pendriveapps.com) offers a rich variety of portable software for free—even DVD burning applications and audio video editing tools here!
While the Open Source applications that offer free stuff is great, U3 (www.u3.com) offers both free and priced software. There is also Ceedo (www.ceedo.com) which helps companies offer their employees USB-loaded corporate applications like Microsoft Office and Adobe Photoshop. Of course, the corporate stuff is not free, but I can imagine how small businesses can empower employees at low costs using these.
SanDisk is selling its Cruzer range of storage devices pre-loaded with a U3 platform. It is only a question of time before tiny storage disks turn smart even in default sales. That’s like buying a PC for the price of a CD! firstname.lastname@example.org