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As we become more comfortable with what it means to operate "in the cloud", the University of Minnesota has met the challenges of this idea with a number of solutions. These solutions are intended to, first and foremost, make available an environment where data security risks have been reasonably mitigated. This is either through a UMN-hosted solution or through legal contract.
Google Documents in your UMN Google Apps account allows for online storage of a large number of file formats. Also, one can create word processing documents, spreadsheets, and presentations that can be shared with others to be viewed and even edited by multiple people at once. It is compatible with Microsoft .doc, .docs, .xls, .xlsx, .ppt, and .pptx formats, as well as .jpg, .pdf, and numerous others.
Netfiles is an online file storage location that allows storage and sharing of documents both internal and external to UMN. This solution operates very similar to a traditional file service. One issue is that editing through a web browser is not possible. Documents are downloaded, edited, and uploaded to Netfiles.
Want to use mail merge functionality with your UMN Google Apps account? It can be done with Google Docs.
The links to obtain the mail merge template document are located in the instructions at the link above.
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