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Desktoptwo, a slick suite in a browser

Desktoptwo, a slick suite in a browser

I'm a fan of Web-based applications, such as Writely and Zoho Writer. But I've yet to be sold on a Web-based desktop like Glide Effortless, Goowy, or YouOS. The latest online desktop to pique my interest, yet confound me a bit when it came time to do the write-up: Desktoptwo, from Sapotek.

Desktoptwo is a Flash-based desktop suite. It's good-looking and slick, even in its current beta form. For communication it has an e-mail program and an IM application that supports MSN, Google Talk, and Jabber, and for publishing a blogging platform and a Web site editor. There's also an MP3 player and a file storage system (1GB is free; additional storage will cost you). It also has a browser, which is superfluous since the suite itself runs in a browser (clicking the browser application just opens another browser window anyway). For productivity, it will launch the OpenOffice word processor, spreadsheet, and presentation manager, although at this point in the beta, the applications are poorly integrated into the main Desktoptwo platform.

This suite has a lot of what the average consumer needs day to day. Desktoptwo is free and much less expensive to operate than a PC with a suite of separately licensed software. It is also convenient to be able to access your online workspace from any computer.

Still, this suite, and others like it, remains a curiosity for people with access to their own computing equipment. Dedicated applications on a desktop or a laptop have more functionality and run more quickly. And when you have your hardware, you always know where your data is.

But for the billions of people without the resources to call a single computer their own, Desktoptwo could a great gift--a decent desktop suite that runs almost anywhere.

Found on e-Hub.