Every now and again a tool, item or service comes along that makes you wonder how you were able to live without it in the past.

I again realised this week that Dropbox is one of those tools that will change your life and the way that you interact and share documents with friends and family. Not only sharing, but also the way in which you edit and syncronise your important documents.

Allow me to introduce you to Dropbox.com. First of all the basic service is free. The idea is very simple. After you register on Dropbox.com you can download a small file and install the software on your computer. You will then immediately notice a new folder on your hard drive as well as a new small icon next to your computer clock on the bottom left (or right) of the screen. This new “dropbox” folder is where you are now able to store your important files. You can create many folders under that specific folder.

Here is the important bits of information. First of all the files that you copy into that folder will automatically be uploaded to the Internet into your own personal and private folder. This may serve as a backup system for your vital documents. The second great thing is that you can now also create different folders which you can share with your friends or family. You simply create the folder online and invite friends and family to join the folder. After they register on the website and install the software they will see a new shared folder on their computer. All the files that you or they copy into that shared folder will be synced. You will both have the same files in the two folders. If you change a file, the file will change on both computers. The same will happen if they change or delete a file.

If you are doing research or you collaborate on a document, or if you want to share photos or videos with friends, go download it now. Remember you can even share those big files.