Google Docs & Spreadsheets can handle the nuts and bolts of daily office work, such as composing and editing text documents. crunching numbers in a spreadsheet, and making basic slide shows. While the features are far fewer than those of desktop software such as Microsoft Office, this online service conveniently lets you do your work anywhere and collaborate with other users.
This online bundle has a clean blue-and-white layout that's pretty easy to get to know. The sign-in page displays your word and spreadsheet files in one long list that was refreshed this summer. Similarly to Gmail, content is organized in topical tags, so you can hide all files marked for "family" when signing on at work. This service makes it perhaps too easy to take work home with you. Rather than having to clunkily e-mail ourselves a file of a story we were working on, we just uploaded the text to Google Docs & Spreadsheets to make after-hours tweaks.
When you open a text file, layout tabs contain Edit, Insert, and Revision functions, while a toolbar of graphical icons links to common editing features. Features such as word count conveniently located in the File drop-down menu. Bookmarks easily to find as well, in case you want to set place marks within a long document.
You can pick from many text colors and 19 fonts, and the Insert tab displays wingdings and international symbols in a handy box. That's all the formatting you'll need to write letters and memos for your office or household, as well as papers for school. You can insert images, but a report demanding snazzy graphics would be a better job for Microsoft Word or Corel WordPerfect. We also found it clumsy to work with text tables; you can't use the Tab key to move to the next cell, as you can with Microsoft Word. Nor can you select a table column by using the mouse--a big aggravation. But we like that clicking the Edit HTML link opens a new tab converting your document to relatively clean, Web-ready code. You can post to Blogger, BlogHarbor, BlogWare, LiveJournal, SquareSpace, and WordPress blogs without leaving Google Docs.