Google’s Docs: Collaborate: Writers: Students

by Emon Hassan on January 10, 2007

If you haven’t had the opportunity to check out this fairly new feature from Google, now is when you should. Docs feature is a lot like the Editor on blogs, WordPress as well, that lets you write, collaborate, and publish documents with more freedom than MSWord, although you are able to upload and edit an MS Word document or save a new document created on Docs as one. Neat, I’d say.
‘Collaborate’ is perhaps the best feature I like, as of now – students and writers will love this too – where a document can be worked on simultaneously from two locations. Let’s say the inseparable, albeit fictional, screenwriting duo Dick Johnson and Gina Twatsworth were in fact across the Atlantic ocean, but had Gmail accounts, they’d have no problem writing their latest Helen Mirren action script ‘My Master’s Lost His Fiddle-stick‘ together. No, Google Docs does not have a screenwriting software, yet, but stop for a second and tell me what “soft” ware Billy Wilder or Rod Serling had used besides their fingers. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before plug-ins for screenwriting are available for the masses with a Gmail account. Oooh, Final Draft would love that, wouldn’t they? But how would Johnson and Gina communicate with one another. Umm…Google Talk? Skype? iChat?

Writing, saving and sharing documents can be a huge hassle with desktop-based word processors; perhaps that is so just in my case. With Google Docs you can share, email or save in various formats such as Word, RTF, OpenOffice, HTML (zipped), and, best of all, PDF. You can also have RSS feeds for your documents, upload to your blog, and do many more cool things I do not have the patience to go through. You can find more here. And some more at the Docs Blog.

I won’t get into Spreadsheets, but am sure there’s a lot you can do with it that doesn’t require you to wear a visor. If you’re creative enough, and I’m sure you are, you will find out ways to integrate Google’s Calendar, Toolbar, Blogger, Video, Picasa, and SketchUp in your daily, creative life. Let me just say, and I will repeat it on my next post, I promise, that it’s not what’s being offered right now that excites me, it’s what possibilities there are for future innovations that gives me multiple orgasms. There, I’ve said it.

Now you can ignore this post, ignore Google’s cool offerings, click the ‘Next’ button and read about how someone’s cat can recite The Waste Land by spelling out letters doing back flips. It’s your life after all.

But I should warn you, that cat is a fucking liar!

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