Are you Groovin'?
When I first heard of Groove, long before I joined Microsoft, my first thought was "bah, don't see the use". Since joining Microsoft I've started using it and am converted! Groove absolutely rocks! Why you ask?
Well I started using it to sync my Internet Explorer favorites between my corporate and home PCs. With two corporate notebooks, a personal notebook, a personal desktop, and a demo notebook, managing IE favorites was a pain. Win number one for Groove!
Then I started using it to store my work in progress. When I am on the road or at the office i am using my corporate notebook and I used to store my work in progress on a 2GB USB key. When I am at home I'd plug the USB key into one of my personal PCs and work. This was fine but I am forgetful and leave it at home or in one of my other notebook bags. I also lose the occasional thing and USB keys are popular in that department. Now I put my work in progress in a Groove workspace and I have it on all my PCs. Win number two for Groove!
Speaking of sharing work in progress between my computers, I can also invite others to a Groove workspace and they can read/edit/add to the workspace. This comes in handy as Rick, who is in Ottawa, and myself here in Toronto, to work on the spring TechNet tour. While we do use MOSS 2007 internally and have all our work on there as well, Groove allows us to work on the tour without needing to VPN in (aka we can work on our home PCs) and it all syncs with the MOSS site. Win number three for Groove.
Working with external people is also simplified. I've been working with CMS Consulting here in Toronto to build a one day training session on Vista Security. Even though I can't give them RAS access, and our MOSS site isn't published externally, we were still able to work together through a Groove workspace and all the people involved could work on the project anytime, anywhere without a RAS or web connection. Groove stores all the files locally, and if you don't have a web connection, it syncs when you reconnect. The IT staff at Kid's Help Phone and myself are also using Groove to manage our project. Win number four for Groove! It should be noted that one downside CMS found was my ability to watch over their daily progress and be a backseat driver 🙂
Finally, with the amount of User Groups we now have in Canada, sharing materials, best practices and carrying on other discussions was difficult. We tried a listserv, that wasn't popular, but Groove has been. We now have a Groove workspace for the User Group leaders o interact with each other and with our team. File sharing, an event calendar, meeting agendas/notes, etc... You can even add a chess game 🙂 Win number five for Groove!
So after all this I must apologize to Groove, I am sorry I dismissed you at first, thank you for making my life easier!