problem-solving / tech tips for writers / writers tips / writing

Tech Tips for Writers #104: Need a File on Your iPad? Here’s an Easy Way

Tech Tips for Writers is an (almost) weekly post on overcoming Tech Dread. I’ll cover issues that friends, both real-time and virtual, have shared. Feel free to post a comment about a question you have. I’ll cover it in a future Tip.

Q: I have a video on my computer I want to use on my iPad. How do I do that?

A: There are ways to do that–email it to your iPad, open through DropBox–but those have issues:

  • emailing requires extra steps and time you may not have, and many email accounts limit you to <10MB. What if a video file is larger?
  • DropBox has limited space. And like email, you must put materials in DropBox to access (I know–Duh, but that requires planning. What if your inquiry-driven writing class popped onto this topic on the fly?)

If you’re like me, anything to make worker faster, easier, less steps is a good thing.

I use Carbonite to make data available to my iPad. Yes, Carbonite charges a fee because its primary service is as a back-up of your computer. I decided the cost was worth it to have an offsite automatic redundancy of the material that makes my life tick forward. I’ve used flash drives and CD’s and Windows built-in back-up, but nothing beats an autonomic tool. One of the pluses is that you can access any data that is backed up from your computer’s C drive from anywhere as long as you have the User name and Password. That means when I’m at school and need a file I saved at home, it’s now available.

To access these same files from the iPad, all you do is install the Carbonite app, open it, and access the materials in your backed up drives. Everything opens–movies, Word Files, everything. Of course, you can’t edit them, but you can view and copy-paste.

My only experience is with Carbonite. Anyone have another back-up service that does that?


Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a columnist for and TeachHUBCSG Master TeacherEditorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing TeachersCisco guest blog,Technology in Education featured blogger, IMS tech expert, and a bi-monthly contributor to Today’s Author. In her free time, she is the editor of a K-8 technology curriculumK-8 keyboard curriculumK-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and creator of technology training books for how to integrate technology in education. Currently, she’s editing a thriller that should be out to publishers next summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.

Follow me.

6 thoughts on “Tech Tips for Writers #104: Need a File on Your iPad? Here’s an Easy Way

  1. Pingback: Tech Tip for Writers #106: Auto-add a Period, Caps Lock, and More on an IPad | WordDreams...

  2. Pingback: Tech Tip for Writers #62: Emailing from Word | WordDreams...

  3. Dear all
    You may also upload your documents to iCloud (word, excel and Power Point), which is a free service, and then you can open it in Pages (or any other word processing program. Any .doc or .docx will work). Videos in iPad can only be .m4v, .mp4 or .mov format. You can upload (transfer or drop) it to your iTunes and syncing with the pad. Hope this helps too.


    • Absolutely. Free cloud-based sites are not usually too robust for my purposes. I have videos that are 500MB–every week–so I look for bigger storage. But for smaller stuff, free is wonderful. I even use my gmail account for storage by uploading large files — 10-20 MB to an email and saving it to the Draft file.


What do you think? Leave a comment and I'll reply.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s