As a teacher, Band Director, or just a normal person, using your iPad to keep, store and access all your documents only makes sense!
The problem comes with how to keep all those documents organized! Picture this scenario, which I am sure is very familiar to any of us….
I have documents that I have created on my laptop that I want on my iPad to access while at camp (or in meetings or at home or wherever), I have Microsoft Office documents that arrive in my email from my principals that I need access to, I have registration forms for performances that I need later, I have medical forms for my High School students that I have scanned into PDF’s that I will need all marching season long and I have PDF’s of all of our music.
I could use PDF Expert to store everything in – that app handles all sorts of documents! It also allows me to organize everything into nice little folders. I am also able to digitally sign and fill out documents, like registration forms to email back to someone.
I could use PDF Cabinet to store everything – that app allows me to collaborate on PDF’s with other people! This app also allows me to annotate PDF’s, much like PDF Expert. The problem though is that PDF Cabinet only handles PDF’s!
I could use the Documents app by Readdle. That app allows me to view, edit and organize my files. It even works as a media player! It is very evident in this app of how to access my laptop and pull files from there. In fact this app will even allow me to sync a folder from Box.net or DropBox.com – that means that Documents will download whatever is in that folder onto my iPad automatically!
The biggest issue is that if I put documents in one app, the other apps do not have access to it! So “storing” my documents inside of one app is not ideal! Plus if I start putting the same document in multiple apps then I have a multiple copies of that document floating around and things get messy real fast!
I’m not so sure there is a great answer here EXCEPT in one situation! If all you want to do is be able to VIEW your documents then I think DropBox is a great answer to make things work smoothly!
DropBox is a perfect spot to store all of your currently active documents (or inactive). That’s where I put anything that is current to this school year. From there it gets synced across several computers without me having to think about it, I can share documents with Band Boosters, Students and Parents and I can access anything in there from my iPad, iPhone or another computer. I love DropBox! If you are not familiar with DropBox you should get an account – it is a 2 GB of free storage in the cloud that works flawlessly! (Click this link to sign up under me and I get some extra free storage as well!)
BUT YOU MUST BE AWARE OF THIS ISSUE!
All my files are stored where I can easily access them when I have Wi-Fi access! What about when I am at Band Camp this next week? Well here is the tip of the day –
iPAD TIP:Mark your DropBox files as Favorites on your iPad. Then they will be downloaded to your iPad and they will stay there for you to view when you need them. They will also be available for you to use the “Open In” option so that if you need to open those documents in another app it won’t be a problem. Now, as many years as I have used the DropBox app on my iPad I have never known this was an option. It is not apparent and it is a bit hard to explain in text so I made a video (it is easy though so don’t fret!)