15 responses to “This app changed my practice: Dropbox”

  1. I had not thought of using the drop box for teaching files. Thank you for the idea. MC

  2. nice idea

  3. now I know what that dropbox icon is on my desktop!!

  4. Heard about it form others but this description helps me to see the value. I signed up

  5. Thanks for the tip on converting files to pdf format

  6. I am not that cmptr savvy yet – long way to go!!

  7. Good idea. I didn’t know that there is a 2.5 G free version. Thanks.

  8. Dropbox has been very useful in daily use. It also updates all my photos to my computer at home or the office. It makes my smart phone a perfect little mobile scanner.

    A very recent free offering from Google is the Google Drive which provides a 5GB virtual drive. This is very similar to Dropbox except it is seamless with Google Gmail users.

    Disclosure: I wished I owned Google stocks…..

  9. I was just made aware of a HIPAA privacy concern (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act): pictures of patients, even if not including the face, could potentially show identifiable cues (moles, rings, etc), thus it’s probably not a good idea to upload these unprotected to the cloud, either. Thus, I’ll amend the post to reflect/remove this use of Dropbox (I always ask patients if it”s OK to take their pictures/video, but the HIPAA concern stands).

    The article already states we should not upload private patient data to cloud services without adequate encryption.

  10. I didn’t realize there were apps that could do all this. I feel I should start paying attention to all this new technology. Thanks.

  11. This sounds very useful. Do you just use it on your portable device or can you log in on your hospital computer?
    Our IT department has blocked the use of Dropbox on hospital computers – is that anyone else’s experience. I am hoping to change their minds with this article, but it would help if I knew that other facilities had this available.

  12. i think this is a very timely topic – thanks for sharing.
    In general UBC copyright does not allow for distribution of articles even when all parties are covered by the copyright agreement, i.e. you can send a link to students (a DOI link works best in my experience), but you cannot send the article pdf.

    As for the comparison, there have been many major updates to other prominent services (e.g. Skydrive and Google Drive) since the lifehacker comparison article was posted. These new developments I think make those products stronger than Dropbox in many ways. i think a better, newer comparison of services is available at:


  13. Great article Steve.
    Mirroring concerns voiced in your May 30 response regarding HIPAA and patient privacy, and also Copyright (copyright.ubc.ca) voiced in Eli’s comment.
    Now, please instruct us on encrypting files.
    Regards & thanks.

  14. Nice idea Steve.

  15. That is a great article. There is a similar cloud based service similar to Dropbox called Evernote. Evernote has similar features including the ability to tag your notes and also has search for words that are visible in a photograph. For example, you can photograph a presentation slide and Evernote will put image through OCR so that you can later search for word. Like Dropbox, Evernote is platform agnostic and seems just a little “smarter”. The other feature, compared to some of the cloud drives is that all the data can be stored on your device, and is immediately accessible, and there is an excellent markup system to highlight notes. There is also a related app called Penultimate for iPad that exports written notes directly to Evernote. Evernote also has a calendar to-do function with reminders. I use both systems, but use Dropbox more for archival backup storage. I use Evernote daily and at this time have over 5000 notes. It has been particularly useful for board review!

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