Google Apps

googledocs-tipsGoogle Apps was the first major web based office suite and provided such a strong force. I have used it in the past, but always went back to my installed version of MS Word. I really like the idea of web based word and spreadsheets but I couldn’t limit myself to having only that.

I think that Google Docs will have a place, but I don’t feel that place is to be a strong contender in the office suite. ¬†Everyone talks about the “cloud”, but we also know that we live in a ultra sharing society but do we really want to trust everything to the cloud?

Spreadsheets are great for working on budgets and are geared towards finances, I will not store my financial information on a cloud version unless it is so vague that it is useless. I would want to have encryption in place to protect myself before putting it on the cloud, something that i would not rely on Google to help protect.

I think Google did a great job pushing the technology with Google Docs and they continue to do so, this is a nice environment to share information as well. My kids will be learning Microsoft Office as that is what will be used in schools and on the job.

For a cloud based tool, it is great. I wouldn’t take that away from it, it was the first it was very innovative with what it did. But, being the first does not always mean you are the best.

I use GMail all of the time, I would like to switch based on the privacy statements that are now being published by Google, I think the people need to wise up and realize the that cloud is NOT private. If you want privacy encrypt it with strong encryption and hope for the best.

So, in conclusion, I do like Google Docs there are some great use cases for it. But I don’t think it will be the winner in the Cloud Office Suite “war”.

Images from http://www.edudemic.com/2012/04/50-little-known-ways-google-docs-can-help-in-education/

Online Office Platforms

Online office suits or platforms used to be limited to Google, well now Apple has release iWork in Beta which is free right now. I have used Google Docs before but not heavily, I have a subscription to Office 365 as part of MSDN which I am trying out now also.

OfficeOnDemand365

I started using Office 365 about a month ago, but not heavily either. I use SharePoint for work and save my documents there which i like a lot. Office 365 is the same thing, but it is not contained to the private network. There are ways of further securing Office 365 using SkyDrive Pro, but for the time being I am using the version I have as part of my standard subscription. This is secured to the people that I share the documents with but it is stored on Microsoft servers which does open up issues with certain country specific privacy laws.

The user experience that Microsoft provides is very closely matched to the installed software which is very impressive, also part of the subscription provides the install software that will contact to the Office 365 Sharepoint Document Library.

 

I am going to work a little more heavily with all three of the platforms and record my thoughts and comparisons about each in future posts so stay tuned.