A worldwide race for storage space

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By Harlan Nemerofsky

Ten thousand songs. 250,000 emails. 13 million pages on Microsoft Word.

That’s the equivalent amount of space Dropbox is offering in its latest promotional offer, the Great Space Race.

Like Google Drive, the free file sharing program allows users to store their files in one readily available ‘Cloud’, or backed-up virtual server space, so it can be shared and accessed easily.

Launched earlier this month, the offer challenges universities and colleges all over the world to get as many new Dropbox users as they can.

At stake: 23 additional gigabytes of storage space for the winning institutions users for two years.

Just for applying for the promotion, the user gets an extra gigabyte of storage space on top of the original two.

Students earn points for their school by signing up and referring other classmates to Dropbox and getting them to complete a gettingstarted kit. The contest runs eight weeks through Dec. 10.

Ryerson currently has 1,894 points. That’s good for 254th overall, 14th in Canada, and 6th in Ontario.

“I think a student would want to use Dropbox over Google Drives because to share a file its probably more convenient and it seems to be more intuitive,” said David Gelb, Director of Graduate Program in Design at York University. “If they were working on a project and sharing those files with members of their group, Dropbox is much better.”

Maya Levinshtein knows all about that.

The University of Waterloo architecture student uses Dropbox several times a day and has over 33 gigabytes right now, 23 from Space Race. Being a design student, she routinely uses 300 MB files like Photoshop or Illustrator, so the high storage space really helps.

“We use it during group projects at school so that we don’t always have to meet up. Instead, we can just put our work on Dropbox so that the rest of the group members can see it, open it, edit it, and whatever else. It’s very convenient. It’s such a hassle if the person is beside me, taking out a USB stick, loading it from one computer to another.”

The rules of the contest: When a school earns enough points they ‘level’ up – the levels are 3 GB, 8 GB, 15 GB, and the grand prize of 25 GB. Schools get a single point for each person who registers for Space Race and installs Dropbox on their computer and two more points for each person that goes through the Get Started guide.

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