Creating waves since its release a few months ago, a new Facebook app by Andrew Mawer and Tory Jarmain of the University of Western Ontario allows Facebook users to share, transfer and store files using the social utility itself. The catch? A limit of 2GB. But you can share literally any type of file that you use on a daily basis.
Think of it as something like Dropbox, only via Facebook, so this time you don't need an excuse to keep feasting your eyes on Facebook's blue-and-white colour scheme.
Techvibes recently sat down with co-creators Andrew and Tory to do a deep dive and explore the concept of the app itself.
"Filefly was inspired by the shared experiences of students working to complete group projects within very tight deadlines." quips Andrew, "we're talking 48-hour group projects with dozens of files exchanging hands very frequently. It's often very hard to keep track of them, especially if multiple updates are being made to them in a short period of time."
Says Tory, "It's hard to teach Dropbox to people who aren't very technical by nature. However, we noticed that in many cases, group members tend to add each on Facebook as a way to collaborate, so we thought, why not tap into that and make it easier for everyone?"
Bucking the trend of most apps, Filefly was designed with non-techies in mind. "We wanted to create a system that embraces the way non-techies use tech," says Tory, "And we did so by studying their habits with email, file-sharing and team collaboration. So you'll see a lot of the little headaches that usually accompany online apps ironed out here."
"Filefly's been designed for use with as few clicks as possible, and there's no hassle of needing to maintain a login and password for your account because it's baked inside the Facebook infrastructure. So there's also no issue with identities, emails, email address changes and those little peeves that make group collaboration difficult."
So why the 2GB limit?
"We're working on it." they both say with a smile.
And what if you're not a Facebook user? (Yes, I did ask).
"Well it's a starting point," says Andrew, "Facebook solves a lot of issues as we've outlined, but because there's still a significant number of people who don't use it we're planning on expanding our offering to allow support and compatibility to non-Facebook users as well, via email and our actual app website. It's all in the works, so we'll keep you posted."
Search "Filefly" on Facebook or visit www.CatchFilefly.com to get going.