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Aug 19, 2013

Accessing Your iCloud Files

Apple 3D Blue Logo

As you know, I am a huge Apple fan boy. I have a number of Macs, iPads, and iPhone, etc… And just now, I figured out how iCloud document syncing works, sort of. Wow, talk about hiding a feature!

For this to work, you must have apps that work on both Apple operating systems. Thusly, because I work in a cross platform world (where I regularly work with OS X, Windows, and Linux), I generally look for apps that work on every platform. Thus, it seems few of my apps have this little feature. So I was messing around with Textastic on the iPad and noticed the iCloud dialogs. Lo and behold, I started Textastic on OS X and there were my files! But, there don’t seem to be anywhere on my disk. So where are they?

This CNet article does a nice job of where the iCloud files are on your mac.. They are in ~/Library/Mobile Documents by the way. The way this works seems counter-intuitive to how things are done on a Mac. You find the file which opens the app, not the other way around. Providing no obvious access on OS X or on iCloud.com seems very Windozian to me.

Also, this whole walled garden approach bugs me. Why not make Windows versions of some apps? Or make your APIs available for Windows apps. But alas, it is 2013 and the only thing that is mostly cross platform compatible is text files and Dropbox.

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