Some essential tools for distributed teams or save the planet!


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Myself and many of my colleagues use an application called SubEthaEdit (a Mac application although there may be a PC equivalent) to author documents collaboratively in real time when working in different parts of the country – we are a remote team. Essentially, we can work on the same document in real time through the SubEthaEdit application with a simple exchange of IP addresses.

Coupled with the use of Skype (headset required with microphone for best results) we can work together authoring and editing documents.

Many of you may work as I do, but a problem has been to find a cross platform equivalent so we can work with colleagues who use other platforms. Peter Twining of the Open University pointed me at jotlive.com that is a web based solution that has a fair stab at achieving the same as SubEthaEdit. It is not as slick as it is browser based, but a big advantage is that it doesn’t matter what platform you use. Worth a look if you want to explore this kind of working.

These powerful collaborative working tools are free or relatively cheap. So why not have a go with your colleagues and spare the planet a journey or two to work? Not that I have any scope for being ‘holier-than-thou’ about my carbon footprint!

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