Document writting
(Note that the CircuitNet Wiki provides a basic facility for collaborative writing)

  • Google Docs
    • This provides a suitable free facility for people writing academic papers, bids and similar documents together. It can be used in real time with different author’s contributions being highlighted in different colours. Collaborative spreadsheets can also be edited.
    • A conversion facility with Microsoft Word is provided for documents. This appears to work better with Word 2003 than with Word 2007.
    • A number of additional facilities are available, including adding comments, drawing and embedding objects such as Charts.
    • Using this requires creating a Gmail account.

Sharing Files
(Note that the CircuitNet Documents&Resources option allows sharing of files among a CircuitNet group)

  • DropBox
    • This is a free facility which allows up to 2 Gb of files to be copied to a local computer directory, which then are available to specified users via a browser on the Internet. The facility is available for PCs, Macs and Linux machines.
    • Using this requires creating a Dropbox account and installing a local application.

Conferencing tools

  • Skype
    • This is a facility which is free to other users on the Internet who have it installed.
    • Up to 25 people in principle can take part in an audio conference.
    • Video conferencing between 2 persons with screen sharing is available.
    • For a video conference and screen sharing between 3 or more people, a Skype plugin called Yugma SE can be used.
    • For recording audio and video conversations, Jing can be used.
  • Twiddla (Whiteboard)
    • This is a free team white-board facility that can be used for online group meetings and discussions.

Real Time Discussion/Collaboration

  • Google Wave (Example)
    • Google Wave is a real time collaboration environment with a combination of features.