Thursday: File Type Confusion
So far, I've been doing all my work quite happily. I've been writing stories in Google Docs and life has been good. The 802.11n network connection has been working like a champ and all is well. Then, I get a WinWord Doc file from an editor that needs work. "No problem," I think. I download the file, open up the file manager, and click to open it: Problem.
While Google Docs is, of course, the default document editor, and can handle both .DOC and DOCX file formats with aplomb, it turns out ChromeOS doesn't know what to do with these file formats. It also can't figure out what to do with LibreOffice's ODF. When I double-clicked all I got was an unknown file type error message.
It turns out that while various Google programs "know" what to do with various file formats, no one has connected the dots for ChromeOS's file manager. It does understand that it should either show you or use the Picasa Web site to work with graphics, but the only way I've found so far to determine what ChromeOS will do with a local file type is to try to open it up and see what, if anything, happens. This is unacceptable.
Friday: Dropbox and other applications
So the next day I got a clever idea. If the file manager can't figure out file types, maybe I could loop around this problem by using Dropbox. I was wrong. First, Dropbox doesn't work with ChromeOS. I find that really annoying since Dropbox works with practically all my other devices up to and including my Android phone and my iPad.
There are lots of other programs available through the Chrome Web Store that work just fine with my Chromebook, but that fundamental problem with working with files directly still grates on me. I know the Chromebook is meant to be used online 99% of the time, but the SSD is there so you can still do something with local files when you're offline. Or, at least I thought that was the case anyway.