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Under the Radar: Your data (and life) in the cloud

Files, baby pictures, site logos oh my. We're here in Mountain View, Calif., covering sites that specialize in media tools.

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--The second to the last group rounding up Tuesday's presentations at the Under the Radar conference comes from all walks of Web services. There's a tool to post your baby photos, one to have artists and creative types scramble to create something for you, an upcoming video channel surfing app, and one that organizes all your files online and off.

CrowdSpring, a start-up we listed as one to watch, is a marketplace for creative ideas. The site lets you put out a project and get it crowd-sourced. The winner gets cash and potentially a job depending on what idea hunters are looking for. The service keeps track of completed projects and ideas in progress, which you can see in this logo contest, which had nearly 200 submissions from independent designers who were called upon to help rebrand a site.

Ffwd (pronounced "fast forward") is the creation of former iLike and CEO Patrick Koppula. I got a demonstration of it earlier Tuesday and it's a really fun idea, blending a little bit of the fun of channel surfing Web videos in a similar fashion to what's been seen on StumbleUpon. Instead of random Web videos though, Ffwd is all about channels and exploring other sets of videos as they've been sorted into those channels.

The site got its name for the ridiculously oversized fast-forward button that skips to the next clip in whatever channel you're on. Users also have the option to jump to three other channels where the same video they're currently watching is housed.

The site is launching this summer with plans for an application programming interface that developers and content creators can plug into in 2009. There's also an upcoming Wii-optimized version of the site that will let you channel surf from your couch--that is, in case there's nothing good on TV.

Lil'Grams is a real-time publishing tool for parents for text and media of their children. Like Tumblr, it separates what type of post you're about to do by what type of media it is, and adds on an extra layer of protection by letting you pick the privacy options before it even goes live. Likewise your friends and family members can choose what type and how much of any updates they want to receive, keeping them from getting spammed by your 500th picture of your child smearing food on his or her face.

Lil'Grams works via e-mail, SMS, and Twitter. You just send an item to a special address and it will organize it and archive it for you. Webware's Rafe Needleman attempted doing something similar with Gmailstarting last month, but if you don't feel like filling up your in-box, this is a more organized solution.

The service is launching in beta next week with plans to open up to everyone in late summer. Rafe will no doubt be doing the hands on and sending me and everyone he knows a million alerts of said food smearing.

Putplace is an online storage provider. The service links together all your files with digital signatures and then puts it on a huge file map. These signatures track where you've shared those files online so you can view the past history of any given file.

The service will also estimate how much online storage you should use based on what you've got laying around on hard drives and what services you're using. When it comes time to get some online storage, you can buy it from PutPlace based on how much you need.

PutPlace is launching at the end of the month. Until then, it's in private beta.

Coming up next is the last session of the day with a handful of start-ups that specialize in useful eye candy. Stay tuned, and catch up on all our coverage here.

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