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There’s a Secret Way to Host Your Website for Free

There’s a Secret Way to Host Your Website for Free
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Ever wanted to make a website?

Well now you have no excuse. In fact, you can host your website for free using this little known trick. I’m not sure why, but nobody seems to know about this trick. I accidentally ran across this help post from Google, and suddenly realized that this is a feature that could be incredibly useful.

Let’s go through the steps

  1. Download Google Drive and create a Google Drive account
  2. Create an HTML website, or simply download a starter project
  3. Now you have your website, but you need to host it! Upload the website files to Google Drive and put them in a new folder
  4. Go to drive.google.com, sign in, right click on the folder with your website files and click “Get Link”
  5. The link will look something like this:
    https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B-2V84KLSI7AflhSLXJ6enAtTG1xSmNvUU5DMGFiSVpLVER6QWtiR0dKdkhpLWV5TV9LZkE
    See that part after the “id=”? Copy that long ID down in a separate notepad or word document. That’s your document ID. You’ll need it later.
  6. Right click on the website folder again in Google Drive.
  7. Click Share, then Advanced
  8. Click Change, and set the permission to “Public – On the Web”. Your website is now accessible by anyone if they know how to access it.
  9. Remember that document ID I had you write down? Well, now you can go to
    http://googledrive.com/host/YOUR DOCUMENT ID GOES HERE
    This will take you to your website! Cool, huh?

So, how is this useful?

Well, now every change you make to your website files in your local google drive folder on your computer, not just on drive.google.com will be propagated to that website address. This allows you to make incremental changes to your website and see the results instantly by going back to that web address.

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Now, there are other ways to do this on your computer such as visiting the file with your browser on a local host, but there are some features of websites that are blocked due to cross-domain security issues, which cannot be resolved unless you actually host the website.

What are the limitations?

To start, I’m not entirely sure how long this functionality will remain in Google Drive. It’s not a well-publicized feature, and so it probably also isn’t very highly utilized. Google tends to get rid of things that aren’t highly utilized, so we’ll see how long this lasts.

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In addition, this hosting solution should only be used for rapid prototyping. DO NOT host your website on Google Drive permanently and tell all your friends to go visit that link, because it probably isn’t as secure as actually hosting your website on a dedicated or shared hosting site. This should only be used for personal or internal development purposes.

Finally, certain server languages cannot be run on Google Drive. Unfortunately this is trial and error so if you are not sure, you will have to experience at your own risk.

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Is this really free, or are there some strings attached?

Other than the limitations I mentioned, there are no strings attached at all! It will not cost you a single penny! Now, you do have to keep in mind that once your website is complete and ready to launch to the public and attract millions of views to make you rich, you’re probably going to want to buy a dedicated or shared hosting solution. But then all you need to do is copy the website files over to your host, and BAM — Instant production-level website. Cool, huh?

Featured photo credit: Silhouette of cropped shot of a young man working from home using smart phone and notebook computer, man’s hands using smart phone in interior, man at his workplace using technology, flare light via shutterstock.com

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Last Updated on December 18, 2020

Can Technology have Biases Like Humans?

Can Technology have Biases Like Humans?
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Technology has taken a vantage leap in providing solutions for man. Before now, technology used to appear complex and would require a great deal of expertise to handle solutions available. Today, we have technology applicable in the simplest human activities as smart products with intelligent algorithms powering them as they make error-free judgments and provide intelligent and analytic solutions.

Does technology have all the answers?

This article from Credit Suisse, tells us that technology does not have all the answers because it has been found to exhibit “similar biases,” as humans. No one can discredit the impact of technology, but it is not totally free of human input and this is the reason we experience these biases in many areas we have technology holding foot.

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Creating technological solutions transparently

This article suggests that the process of creating technological solutions be made transparent and subject to contribution from many people who would end up as users of the product – male, female, young, old, learned, unlearned and all other preferences as we have them. It also underscores the importance of having women on product development teams. This approach is not sure to eliminate all forms of bias, but it is a good way to start in order to appraise the full benefits of technology.

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Technology as the connecting tool

Technology so far has been a major connecting tool amongst us humans. It is used and appreciated by all regardless of race, language and sex. In order to keep it less subjective to these arguments about human biases. I believe we should gather opinions on products and solutions before making them available to the public. This could be done by gathering input from intended target users and receiving feedback across the stages of production.

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“Recognizing the problem is a start…success will depend on inclusive technologies that meet this vast untapped market.” This cannot be more apt especially at a time when we look up to technology for solutions. We should not muzzle our progress with technology by battling algorithm bias. The first way to avoid this battle is by reading this article here.

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