Box is an easy to use file sharing service that I use to share files in my courses and for my projects. Files can be shared from your desktop computer or mobile device. Box also includes collaboration tools so others can contribute to your shared folders. The Box service is located at http://www.box.net.
After you sign up for the free account, you are ready to start
uploading and sharing your files. You have 5 gigs of storage with the
free account. Paid accounts give you more storage, security and branding
options. A complete list of features can be found at http://www.box.net/features/complete_list.
Using the Box interface for adding files is simple…just
drag-and-drop from your desktop to the browser window. Some mobile apps
have Box support built-in so files can be saved directly to folders in
your Box account.
You can create folders in Box to organize your files. I created a
folder for each course I teach and added files relevant to the course
such as the course syllabus and project files. I also use box to share
files from my own projects. You can utilize drag-and-drop to organize
your files and folders within the Box interface.
Here is a view from the Box iPhone app.
Box displays the URL of the selected folder or file in the Box
interface. Just copy the link and paste it into an email to allow others
access to your folders or files. Of course, they only have access to
files that you have marked for public consumption.
Box also gives you an embed code to insert a Box widget into your
learning management system (LMS) or website. A group of folders or
single folder can be shared in this way. This saves me a lot of time
managing files since the files are dynamically updated where ever the
widget is located. I no longer have to upload files to my web server and
edit the web page to include the links nor do I have to access my LMS
and manage my file links. Using the Box interface, I can easily rename,
add, update and delete files.
If you have a mobile app that supports Box then you can update files
that the app supports. For example, if I need to update a Word document,
I can edit the document with an app on my mobile device, save the
document and it is instantly updated on my website and LMS.
Here is an example of what a Box widget looks like. The student or
user simply clicks on the file they want to download. Students can also
use Box to share files for group projects and assignments.
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