Google Drive: a dead-end.

I have installed Google Drive this morning, hoping that we could use it as an alternative to Dropbox for an upcoming product we’re working on.

The need is simple: let users publish an RSS feed.

From a first analysis (I hope I’m wrong), it looks like even if I make an item in my Google Drive public, it doesn’t have a permanent URL, which means that it’s impossible to subscribe to it.

Now: companies have not been understanding links for all the story of the Internet, but you would expect that Google of all big and stupid companies would be the one able understand the value of permanent URL and how this empowers others to build things, layer after layer. The fact that you can’t easily link to an object in your Google Drive so that another piece of software (and not a browser) could read it makes this service a dead-end.

Btw: this is exactly the contrary of being open.

4 comments

  1. Alessandro Bahgat

    Documents are private by default. I guess you haven’t tried to make them public or accessible via link by right clicking on them via the web view and clicking on share, otherwise you would have seen this dialog.

    I would love to understand why people are so inclined to dismiss anything that Google does nowadays as crap without taking the time to verify their claims.

    • paolovalde

      I appreciate the fact that documents are private by default, and I was looking forward for this service by google because I use pretty much every other product they have every day.

      But when you decide to make a document public, you don’t get a URL pointing to that document, you get a URL to a page that links that document. That link is not available in the API and it’s not permanent. Not being able to link a resource on the internet is a major drawback as far as I’m concerned.

  2. Luca

    They may have done it on purpose: to avoid the megaupload effect and the connected troubles. Dropbox solves this problem by making painfully slow to download a public file (while it’s ultrafast if you have a shared dir). Just my 5c opinion.