Anyone who regularly uses multiple computers knows the value of Web-based apps like Gmail, Google Docs, and Zoho Projects: Wherever you go, your documents and data go with you. Wouldn't it be great, then, if you could have an entire desktop environment that lives on the Web and houses your contacts, calendar, e-mail, documents, instant messages, and even applications? You can: Here are three "Web desktops" worth checking out.
- Goowy One of the Web's first desktops, Goowy serves up all the basics -- contact and calendar management, file storage, IM, etc. -- along with cool, custom widgets for things like weather, RSS feeds, and to-do lists. I'd say this is the most practical, and functional, of the three.
- Jooce A still-in-beta newcomer, Jooce offers by far the slickest Web desktop: Everything lights up, fades, slides, and so on. It's also relatively limited at this point, offering only file storage, instant messaging, and embedded YouTube videos. But it's worth trying if only for the way-cool rotating 3D desktops (pictured).
- YouOS Like Linux in your browser, YouOS offers a robust desktop environment -- but one that's not nearly as warm, fuzzy, and user-friendly as Goowy and Jooce. Even so, it's amazing to see how close YouOS comes to approximating the real thing.