My CV

panta rei dans lullaby

Video - Panta Rei Danseteater 'Lullaby'

Norwegian dance company Panta Rei Danseteater, late last year, conducted a little experiment whereby three dance makers created two pieces with the same name based on the same idea, featuring three male dancers and two musicians, to see what the outcome was.

June 2nd, 2016

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The days of mailing in a printed copy of your CV for a job are over. That ship has sailed, anybody who thinks otherwise is probably working at the Royal Opera House but even that creaky old wreck is getting with the times.

Everybody tends to assume that you will have access to a personal computer and a word processor so you can put together your own CV at any time.

Even if you have your own machine though a straight forward word processor is not something that comes with a new computer, even the most expensive ones.

Before you run off a buy into Microsoft Office or some other offering from Apple, et-al there is a fully functional free offering in the shape of Google Documents.

Getting Started

The first thing you need is a Google account. If you already use Gmail then you are good to go, otherwise set up a new account by visiting Gmail.com or one of a million other Google related websites.

Once you have your account and you are logged in click on the main Google logo and select "documents" from the drop down list.

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On the next screen you will either have a blank list or the "imported from Google Notebooks" document. Here in TheLab™ we never have used Google Notebooks so we have no idea where it came from. Just delete it if it's bothering you.

Click on the "create" button in the top left of the screen and select "document" to get started on your very first creation. You can create interactive spreadsheets and all manner of other things with Google Docs but we are interested in a normal text document at the moment.

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You will then be presented with what looks like a very clean and simple word processor with all the usual controls to format your text and layout your new CV.

To change the name of your document simply click on "untitled document" and type in a new name.

There is no need to save at any time. Google takes care of all of that automatically as you type in real time. Even if the power is suddenly cut from the computer you are using then you won't have lost a thing.

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Getting Things Done

Almost everything you can do with a regular desktop word processor is there. Fonts, tabs, bullet points, colours and images are all available should you choose to use them. Keyboard shortcuts also work for undo and redo as well as bold text, italics and underlining.

If you want to insert an image then click on the small icon illustrated in the screen shot.

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This will open a small window and from here you have two ways to insert an image into the document. You can either drag an image from your computer's desktop into the large box (illustrated) or click on the "choose an image to upload" button.

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Once the image is in place it will automatically set itself to "fixed position" which, on most occasions, is not what we want.

To move the image you need to click, somewhat confusingly, the "fixed position" text to switch it to "in line with text". This will allow you to place the image almost anywhere that you want within the document. This feature is probably one of the flakiest in Google Docs since the image seems to jump around fairly randomly and can make a big mess of the text if you're not careful.

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If you really must insert images into your document then do so with care.

Share Time

Once you have completed your document then it's time to share it with the masses. Google Docs offers a number of formats for exporting your document so you can have a personal copy to share through email or print out.

The most popular format is PDF (Portable Document Format). To export to this format simply click on "File> Download as > PDF" and you will be prompted for a location to save the document.

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If you are on a shared computer then you can save to a USB thumb drive and take your document home with you on that.

The other way to share is straight from Google Docs. Simply click on the "share" button, in the top right corner. By default your new documents are private and cannot be seen by anybody else.

To change this, first of all select "change" on the privacy settings as illustrated in the image below.

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When you select change we recommend that you use the "anyone with the link" option which you can then email to people who need to see your CV (no Google account required for viewing). Take care with the "public" option especially if your CV contains personally identifying information like telephone numbers or a home address.

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Free and Simple

There you have it, a free and simple way to create your CV, or other documents, with Google Docs (other options are available from different providers).

Other than being free the main advantage is your documents are saved remotely, so no need to worry about things being lost and you can access your stuff from any computer, anywhere in the world.

The downsides? There may be performance issues depending on the browser or the computer you are using since the word processing application is basically running inside a web browser and there is a lack of flexibility with some of the features, like handling images.

Those are minor annoyances however when using what has become a very polished product and creating your CV and storing it this way could prove very useful if you need to apply for an audition and you don't happen to have a copy of it with you, digital or otherwise.

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