Thursday, April 19, 2007

Google all the way!

The pieces in the entire google puzzle are now falling into place.(i'll explain what pieces later in this blog entry). I was just surfing around these tools on the top left corner of my gmail inbox main page. What fascinated me the most were the docs and spreadsheet tools. I believe Google has created a masterpiece. With two simple but powerful and easy to use tools, it has challenged Microsoft's Office products. As I write this, the brilliant minds at Microsoft will be at work, trying to figure out a way to nip this problem in the bud before it grows into something big and eats up its market for Office suite related products. They have every right to worry because frankly speaking Google's office products are amazing. These are true Opensource products and all you need to use them is a decent net connection.

The people at Google have done a good job in integrating the core functionalities of MS Excel spreadsheet app in its own Spreadsheet product. You can perform all the basic operations that you could in Ms Excel. Rite now, the Google Spreadsheet App (GSA) does not have advanced features like pivot tables,macros and filters but the package looks promising. You have all the basic features such as creating a new workbook, adding new sheets, deleting sheets, adding rows,columns,copy,paste,merge,formatting of rows,columns &cells,sorting and a good range of formulae. They have just added a chart feature to this application which looks good. The sheets get saved after every 2 minutes. So you can carry on working on a particular doc without worrying about backup or losing data due to network problems. You can share the docs with others having a google account and even publish the sheets making the data available to everyone. The application allows you to keep multiple versions of the same file. Everytime you make changes and save the file, the version before the change is backed up. Quite a handy feature should the file get corrupted. All you have to do is revert to the previous version. The application allows you to export and import spreadsheets and workbooks in formats such as CSV(comma separated variables) and xls. Other than this, you can export the sheets in html and pdf formats.The application allows multiple users to work on the same doc as well. Cool isn't it?

I hope more people become aware of these fantastic applications. Right now people are used to Microsoft Office and Lotus Notes products;both of which are freaking expensive and require huge amounts of disk space. All you need for the Google products is a decent (64kbps will suffice) net connection and disk space for storing the spreadsheets only.I definetly dont mind a few ads on the page if you can provide me with a free office suite-hell maybe i'll click a few ads just to make the guys at google happy :-). These are products targetted to those users who can't afford to purchase expensive machines for the sake of running some sleak looking Microsoft OS and whose use of the Office suite is limited to the word processor, spreadsheet application and a presentation maker. Google Labs are already working on a presentation creating software and if the design of Picassa is anything to go by then it sure will be sleak and fast. I'm also hoping that applications like these are exploited by innovators for designing low cost computers such as the Simputer. I've seen a simputer work, it looks good but its damn slow if you run the open office products on it. Net based softwares like the ones created by Google will definetly reduce the load on such devices. I'm sure Google will be thinking of making a lite version of these products available on mobile phone devices enabled with Edge,GPRS etc. Microsoft has already started reacting to this and are planning to make window xp and office xp available for under $3.00!!So they're in a way implying that Windows Vista and Office 2007 are niche products for high end users and the XP suite is now for those who cannot afford monstrous machines for running the Vista package. Well played Microsoft!

Now to my earlier point of pieces falling together in the big Google puzzle. Sometime back, the internet was flooded with news and blogs about Google coming up with its own OS -the GooOS. Google itself hasn't announced anything from its end about any OS plans in the near future. But it seems quite realistic. What Google has now is a popular email service, an online office suite, blogging tools, the premier search service,an image editor and an excellent online storage option. If you have noticed, then all images on your blog and picassa web, your videos shared on youTube,all documents and your email are all a part of the "2.88 Gb and growing" web space. All these features seem to be a part of Google's vision of creating a free OS that supposedly is web based as well! Such an OS will cater to all devices-not just PCs. I hope that Google does come up with something so fantastic. The day of the traditional OSes mite just get numbered!

p.s. I wrote this entire entry in google's word processor :)


Cuckoo said...

Good info and impressive insight !

Will check it. Thanks for sharing.

Sigma said...

Interesting perspective. And ggod information.
Google does come up with amazing ideas, and what is more, executes them well.

Abhijeet said...

hey sigma, welcome to my blog.hey cucks!
google hires the smartest people around. m totally fida over gmail and picassa...its not photoshop but its a damn handy application...people think of google as a company thats built around their search engine...but for me, they are slowly targetting windows :)

Cuckoo said...

I agree... Picasa is extremely handy compared to Flickr which takes too much time even to show up ;) And it doesn't allow us to create more than 3 albums for a free account.

I think on google part, I'll take your help for further insights. Yet to explore the analytics which I wanted to use for my blog.

BTW, nice player you've got unlike mine. :)

Abhijeet said...

hey i think u can create more albums with Flickr Pro. Neway, the player works kya?I tried to use it and it downloaded the entire song on Download Accelerator...either way ppl wont complain i guess :)