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Google Launches New Assault On Microsoft Office

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the to-the-mattresses dept.

Businesses 126

Hugh Pickens writes writes "BetaNews reports that Google has announced the global availability of Google Cloud Connect for Microsoft Office, which went into beta late last year with technology that builds off Google's acquisition of DocVerse. Google Cloud Connect for Microsoft Office is essentially a plugin for Windows versions of the productivity suite (2003, 2007, 2010). 'The plugin syncs your work through Google's cloud, so everyone can contribute to the same version of a file at the same time,' says Google Apps product manager Shan Sinha. Additionally, Google announced a 90-day trial for Appsperience, described as 'a way for companies that currently use cumbersome legacy systems to see how web-powered tools help their teams work together more effectively.'"

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Ballmer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35306590)

Ballmer. Giant chair. "hrurg!"

collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (2)

mantis2009 (1557343) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306646)

Google docs has real-time collaboration (you can see other people's edits as they happen). The video [youtube.com] on collaboration for Google Cloud Connect in MS Office says you have to save before edits are synced to all collaborators. Sounds like a recipe for lots of sync inconsistencies to me.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306732)

Google docs has real-time collaboration (you can see other people's edits as they happen).

So if I type "cockcockcockcock" at the keyboard when the boss comes into the room because, well, it helps me think, Sir, anyone else can read that change immediately? Does no-one these days realise how much productivity is lost by the ability for people to instantly and frequently interrupt you?

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (2)

Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307428)

Does no-one these days realise how much productivity is lost by the ability for people to instantly and frequently interrupt you?

This is why I no longer use IM at work. (Note, my employer encourages IM for communication between employees.)
People don't even try to solve a problem, they just interrupt me.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308388)

This is why I prefer working from home at night. It really helps to keep IM on at work, or else I'd lose more productivity from testers who don't understand how basic web functionality should work and reopen tickets for stupid shit they don't understand. I can settle and focus myself at home, when no one is bugging me.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

MareLooke (1003332) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310894)

IM > Telephone, at least it allows you to finish what you were doing, unlike that bloody telephone that has to be picked up immediately.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307638)

So if I type "cockcockcockcock" at the keyboard when the boss comes into the room because, well, it helps me think, Sir, anyone else can read that change immediately?

Yes. Though this is a terrible evil, the silver lining is that this feature also allows you to instantly see when something has been updated.

Does no-one these days realise how much productivity is lost by the ability for people to instantly and frequently interrupt you?

Do you not realize how much productivity is lost when you have two people working on the same shot because the spreadsheet hasn't been updated?

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (2)

FatdogHaiku (978357) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307916)

My God Man! Think of the BIG PICTURE. People will know when I'm not doing something, and may even expect some sort of performance improvement after they figure out that I now do nothing at all.
Seriously, I am going to lose sleep over this...
And I'll probably be expected to try and recoup those lost z's at home.
Doh!
Stupid Cloud...

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308098)

Just don't type it into the shared document. Simples.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308884)

Google docs has real-time collaboration (you can see other people's edits as they happen).

So if I type "cockcockcockcock" at the keyboard when the boss comes into the room because, well, it helps me think, Sir, anyone else can read that change immediately? Does no-one these days realise how much productivity is lost by the ability for people to instantly and frequently interrupt you?

s/cock/Cock of the Walk/

So this is basically, a distributed filesystem (2, Informative)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306738)

But without locking or versioning. That'll work a treat. Fastest finger wins.

Sorry, forgot, we get to spend our lives on conference calls now, we can all play distributed lock manager. Like dungeons and dragons but corporate.
 

Re:So this is basically, a distributed filesystem (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35307192)

I think youu're looking for 'Apartments and Accountants'

Re:So this is basically, a distributed filesystem (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308914)

I think youu're looking for 'Apartments and Accountants'

Or Sheldrakes and Kubeliks

Re:So this is basically, a distributed filesystem (1)

One Monkey (1364919) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310814)

Boardrooms and Bureaucrats

Re:So this is basically, a distributed filesystem (2)

Simon80 (874052) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307580)

Let me get this straight. You're saying that Google Docs and this product are fundamentally flawed because they don't force the user to lock things before editing? The versioning is present, it's just implicit, which is the way it should be if the average user is going to willingly use version control.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (-1, Troll)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307046)

Google docs has real-time collaboration (you can see other people's edits as they happen). The video [youtube.com] on collaboration for Google Cloud Connect in MS Office says you have to save before edits are synced to all collaborators. Sounds like a recipe for lots of sync inconsistencies to me.

And the thing is, that's a terrible design.
You can't have multiple people editing a word document anymore than you can have multiple people driving a car on their way to the office.

It's always a clustefuck.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (5, Interesting)

oakgrove (845019) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307160)

You can't have multiple people editing a word document anymore than you can have multiple people driving a car on their way to the office.

To make such a far reaching statement, I assume you've actually tried it, right?

Well, I have and i find it works surprisingly well. We have two women where I work; one works mostly on the internet side and the other mostly on the b&m side. They both have to collaborate on creating things like custom order forms and promotional literature, etc. to send out to new clients.

Before I got there, one would start something in Excel or Word and make it a little ways, then email it to the other who would do some more work then email it back. They would do this however many times it took until they were satisfied.

The first thing I did was get them off of Office, then I showed them how to use Google Docs and the collaborative editing features. I've never seen two happier women over a word processor in my life. Now, what used to take days takes less than an hour. It's amazing. The little green cursor pops up on one screen and the red one on another and away they go.

The simultaneous editing of documents, in my opinion, makes up for any lack of features that Google Docs may suffer from in comparison to Office. It's unbelievable how much more productive people are when they take the time actually try it out and get used to it.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

chudnall (514856) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308374)

You can't have multiple people editing a word document anymore than you can have multiple people driving a car on their way to the office.

To make such a far reaching statement, I assume you've actually tried it, right?

Yes I have. My wife tries to drive the car with me every time we go somewhere. She is entirely undaunted by the fact that it never really works very well.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308494)

This is not a good place to insert a car analogy. Try Libraries of Congress or something else.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (2)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308940)

This is not a good place to insert a car analogy. Try Libraries of Congress or something else.

Imagine a school bus full of kids learning to backseat drive.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308748)

You can't have multiple people editing a word document anymore than you can have multiple people driving a car on their way to the office.

To make such a far reaching statement, I assume you've actually tried it, right?

The first thing I did was get them off of Office, then I showed them how to use Google Docs and the collaborative editing features. I've never seen two happier women over a word processor in my life. Now, what used to take days takes less than an hour. It's amazing. The little green cursor pops up on one screen and the red one on another and away they go.

Do you think he meant a "Word" doc or a text doc?

He may have meant the inability to easily collab on MS Word.

I do agree about Google Docs tho... REALLY, REALLY cool.

I'm starting up a company right now, decentralized, in the cloud,
using Google Docs, EC2, etc. And you can just sit there and
work on a docs and suddenly see the colored cursor appear and
words, adjacent to yours. They see your cursor in color too, so
they won't overtype you. It's pretty much like the difference
between one worker building a house... and what you would
expect, a full compliment of contractors working at the same
time.

Collab is the future. Cloud is the future... embrace that big, wet
amorphous blob.

-@|

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (-1)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308978)

Does google docs audit and track all changes by users in documents or is it food for corporate political wars as users attempt to bugger up parts of a document that are other people's responsibilities and how readily accessible is it.

Also does google warrant the security of documents in the cloud with realistic values implicit with regard to, say tender documents were leaked information could be readily worth millions of dollars. None of this beta crap and your tender documents are readily search able by all of your competitors.

Yeah, I know, computer software the inventors of the utterly meaningless warranty, it is really high time that software companies were forced by law to align their marketing with their warranties.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (3, Insightful)

Luckyo (1726890) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307340)

Erm, so in your opinion, every time more then one person have to work on the same file at the same time (aka collaboration), sitting at the one, same computer, it's a "clusterfuck"?

Do you even understand what collaboration features are designed for? They are there to recreate the experience of multiple people sitting at one monitor and keyboard, working on one document. This is common office work in most companies, from more complex presentations to folks in accounting going over same account sheets and everything in between.

This is supposed to be this way. It has always done that way before, when these people sat in the same room. Nowadays everyone is at their own workstation, collaborating in the cloud is essentially trying to recreate that same thing. You can do stuff like "hey, what do you think of this here?" "no, this here is wrong", etc while being on other sides of the planet without having to essentially email the same document back and forth a thousand time.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (1)

swb (14022) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308890)

I think at one time collaboration was a group of people in a room and a stenographer and/or a secretary transcribing the changes of the people in the room.

Re:collaboration doesn't look as good as in gdocs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35310244)

Its call section breaks and a telephone..

How does this go with european data privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35306658)

So, how does this go with European data privacy laws? Is this another thing which we won't be able to use because they can't tell you where your data is stored and won't let you audit? Will it again be the case that there's no support, just some stupid forum? How about Google start actually competing with Microsoft? We would really really appreciate an alternative.

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306694)

What are your difficulties with MS Office? Be technically honest, IOW illustrate why any problem-solving you have attempted has failed.

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (0)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307228)

I keep trying to install it but it always fails. Where the fuck are the linux binaries?

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (2)

oakgrove (845019) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307312)

You said "MS Office". Are you referring to the desktop silo'd version or the online version? I'll assume you mean the one you have to use on your desktop PC.

Four problems.

  • It costs too much when the competition is free. Of course my problem solving didn't fail. I successfully moved us to Google Docs.
  • Office doesn't have real time collaborative editing. Google Docs does. We save real money when people can work together faster. If I tried to pitch Office to my boss after he's seen how much more gets done with Google Docs, he'd throw me out on my head.
  • When we create documents, we like them automatically shared and accessible from any other computer anywhere. Google Docs does this automatically and instantly. Office does not.
  • Google Docs works on the boss's iPad. MS Office does not.

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310560)

It costs too much when the competition is free. Of course my problem solving didn't fail. I successfully moved us to Google Docs.

I hope you're not calling Google Docs "free"! Even if the "standard" edition is satisfactory, your payment right now is supplying your (i.e. your clients') data to Google for mining. What do you think Google are, a charity?

Office doesn't have real time collaborative editing. Google Docs does.

No. [itpro.co.uk] Note that, as in any proper versioning system, you sync when you're ready - not with every letter you type - although the areas of a document on which people are working will be shown (and optionally locked) if desired. If you really want "real time" letter-by-letter then you're a time-wasting idiot, but you can script an automatic Ctrl-S after each letter.

When we create documents, we like them automatically shared and accessible from any other computer anywhere. Google Docs does this automatically and instantly. Office does not.

Wow. When I create documents I certainly don't fucking want them "automatically shared and accessible from any other computer anywhere". If that's what I want, I'll enable it for specific documents through appropriate collaborative Office / collaborative text editor / version control - though there are still very few cases when I want something accessible "from any other computer anywhere". You have an awful security policy.

Google certainly doesn't do anything "instantly". If you find the responsiveness of Google Apps better than local software, you need to buy PCs less than a decade old or fire your IT guy (you?).

Google Docs works on the boss's iPad. MS Office does not.

Oh. You got me there. It's like in the early '90s everyone computerising would go Wintel because, well, that's what the guy in the competing firm / in head office was being shoveled, and that's where all the shiny cheap marketing was going on. Despite dozens of options, so many decisions come down to the arbitrary whim of a good feeling. You've just illustrated one.

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 3 years ago | (#35311112)

Let's get this straight: MS Office doesn't have RT collab -- MS Office + Sharepoint does.

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308140)

MS Office and LibreOffice kill GDocs. Also Microsoft has made deals so Novell's OpenOffice and KOffice have better compatibility thant Google. Google just don't want to take responsibility.

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (1)

AlienIntelligence (1184493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308846)

MS Office and LibreOffice kill GDocs. Also Microsoft has made deals so Novell's OpenOffice and KOffice have better compatibility thant Google. Google just don't want to take responsibility.

Lol... hey... your pager is blowin up man!

Google Docs(type of offering) is the future. Being
constrained to one computer is the past.

Those that cite compatibility are ignorant to the fact
that if you START workflow on a new platform, the
compatibility isn't an issue.

Sure, lots of places have legacy office systems.

And lawyers and doctors used to be all paper. Who
but a fool would go to a doctor or lawyer now that
didn't do a majority of their stuff on a computer?

Exactly.

Same thing with the cloud, same thing with the
deconvergence [sic] of our connected, online and
storage devices. The cloud will be NECESSARY.

-AI

Re:How does this go with european data privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35310494)

Google Docs(type of offering) is the future. Being constrained to one computer is the past.

Yeah, just like Google Wave was the "future".

Those that cite compatibility are ignorant to the fact that if you START workflow on a new platform, the compatibility isn't an issue.

And you're ignorant of the fact that companies already have existing documents that they need to continue using. Your child-like worldview doesn't coincide with reality and the fact that you would even say what you did leaves me with serious doubt that you have ever worked a single day in a corporate environment..

And lawyers and doctors used to be all paper. Who but a fool would go to a doctor or lawyer now that didn't do a majority of their stuff on a computer?

Who but a fool would base their opinion of how well a doctor or lawyer does their job upon whether they used a computer or not?

Same thing with the cloud, same thing with the deconvergence [sic] of our connected, online and storage devices. The cloud will be NECESSARY.

*Yawn* The "cloud" is just a marketing buzzword for the internet. We've all been there and done that for many years. Some of us choose to own our files, not leave them hostage to a provider that may or may not be there tomorrow. Now why don't you go off and shift some paradigms or leverage some synergy or something?

web-powered? (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306662)

Just because it's on the Internet it doesn't mean it's "web-powered", Google. Version control isn't the same as a shitty web app, even if this is the embrace&extend Google are trying to subject MS to.

(Of course, unlike regular version control, for some reason a third party is needed and permits itself to datamine your repository.)

Re:web-powered? (1)

vikstar (615372) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306864)

What do you mean? This plugin allows live synchronisation over the internet, how is that not "web-powered"?

Re:web-powered? (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306902)

Indeed. The Internet is also powered by AOL.

Re:web-powered? (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308952)

Indeed. The Internet is also powered by AOL.

Especially so in Libya.

Re:web-powered? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35307194)

I guess it could be "web-powered" if it was called the Interweb, but it is not. It is called the Internet.

Re:web-powered? (2)

Mia'cova (691309) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307314)

While I find the term "web-powered" quite painful, we do call plenty of things "web services." In this case, I would assume that's how this is implemented. These days, services are beginning to unify their APIs. Rich clients and ajax-based browser app are starting to share the same web service APIs. So if it's implemented as a web service, I wouldn't take offense to the term "web-powered," even though it reeks of marketing.

Re:web-powered? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308190)

Yet another shitty Google "application" that is nothing more than a web page. Show us a real program and maybe we'll care.

How is this an assault? (4, Insightful)

Suki I (1546431) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306666)

The title does not seem to go with the article. It sounds like Google is adding more functionality to Microsoft Office, free of charge. What am I missing?

Re:How is this an assault? (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306756)

It's like when MS released Services for Netware/Unix/Mac - a shitty implementation for "legacy" clients as gateway to the full MS experience. In that case, the downgrade was to NT server. In this case, it's via "Appsperience" to Google "Apps".

Re:How is this an assault? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35307094)

Good point. After all, when has giving more functionality for free to anything ever helped google?

Re:How is this an assault? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35307126)

The title does not seem to go with the article. It sounds like Google is adding more functionality to Microsoft Office, free of charge. What am I missing?

The Google hordes are crossing the moat right now around Microsoft's office right now.

They're going to tie Ballmer to a chair - then toss the chair out a window.

Re:How is this an assault? (2)

atomicbutterfly (1979388) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307362)

The title does not seem to go with the article. It sounds like Google is adding more functionality to Microsoft Office, free of charge. What am I missing?

Slashdot is no different to most mainstream media these days - everything has to be classed using aggressive words like "war", "assault" or something else dramatic. The odds of using such emotion in a headline increases when dealing with articles about Microsoft. I don't expect things to change one bit, because it seems to work.

Re:How is this an assault? (2)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307550)

  • Throw grit in the upgrade treadmill: If Google gets a portion of the MS-Office customers using the new service, and if MS-Office upgrades break the functionality the users will complain. In the past Microsoft will ask them to go fly a kite and ramp up the speed of the upgrade treadmill a notch. Now Google has enough credibility and if it blames/accuses Microsoft of deliberately messing up the API, Microsoft could not shrug it off or giggle at it like it did to DR-DOS
  • Detailed usage profile: Google will have very detailed view of the docs being saved, features being used most often. It will help cherry pick the most important functionality to implement in Google Docs.
  • Portability Testing: Google would have a steady supply of documents it can experiment with in testing how well it ports to Google doc and back. Yeah, yeah, there are some confidentiality issues. But google could easily replace the text with random gibberish but keep all the formatting in its test suites. Or it could get some companies to volunteer to be guinea pigs. Or pay to volunteer. Or just be a little evil and use it anyway
  • Platform grab: Just grab the platform, interaction and the plumbing first. The actual application that is running on it can eventually fall into your lap. Same thing MS did in its fight with WordPerfect, Lotus123, dBaseIII etc. If google owns the platform, MS-Office is just another GUI app.

Re:How is this an assault? (5, Insightful)

dave562 (969951) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307708)

They are taking aim at SharePoint. Now users can collaborate on documents without needing Microsoft's solution (SharePoint).

BINGO! (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308524)

What a day to not have mod points ...

I'm hoping our company tries this instead of implementing SharePain for the ten people who need to do collaboration. In fact, I'm mentioning it tomorrow!!!

Re:BINGO! (4, Insightful)

dave562 (969951) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309240)

SharePoint is good for a lot of things, but I would put Google Docs like collaboration pretty far down the list. It's great for large projects. I've seen construction companies and law firms leverage it very successfully. But for 10 people, Google Docs is probably all you need.

The thing I like about SharePoint is the way it supports processes and work flows. For example, if you have something like a construction bidding process where you're often filling out the same forms over and over again, and a lot of people are involved at different phases of the process, you can setup a work flow to route the documents from person to person. SharePoint handles the noticing "Hey Bob, it's time for you to sign off on X, Y and Z! Click here."

Re:How is this an assault? (2)

Monchanger (637670) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307740)

It sounds like Google is adding more functionality to Microsoft Office, free of charge. What am I missing?

For a moment don't be Microsoft, be Google: Think three steps ahead.

Today Google is making Office do something Microsoft still hasn't implemented for companies too small (or too smart) to use Sharepoint.
Tomorrow the company's employees are editing documents from anywhere, changing their ideas of what the Internet can do (RIA) and that you don't actually need Office to read a .doc[x].
The next day the boss realizes Google has something to offer and it's much cheaper and often higher quality than the stuff he's been licensing from Microsoft.

It's not guaranteed to work, but there's nothing to lose. Worst-case scenario? Nobody buys the service, Google wasted a teeny tiny fraction of its $35B cash on-hand, shuts it down and Office is offline again. No biggie.

Plus, Google called Microsoft Office not just "cumbersome", but "legacy". Them's fightin' words.

Getting to businesses first (1)

Gravis Zero (934156) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309146)

The title does not seem to go with the article. It sounds like Google is adding more functionality to Microsoft Office, free of charge. What am I missing?

a) Microsoft is trying to do what Google has done with "Office 365, which is beta testing and is expected to go v1 sometime this year." So being the first to the market, Google can get all the early adopters on board with them instead of Microsoft.
b) it's not free of charge but it is less than what MS could charge. this is for BUSINESSES and not for your everyday joe.

RTFA.

Re:How is this an assault? (1)

Nyeerrmm (940927) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309194)

There are two different components of Microsoft Office:

1. The applications. Popular software that I personally feel are the best of the breed for word processing, presentations and spreadsheets. While I prefer LaTeX for documents and Matlab or Python/Scipy/Numpy for math (rather than spreadsheets), I've always had much better experiences with MS Office than Open/LibreOffice. Other options are nice but are less featureful (part of what makes them nice of course). I haven't really tried the Apple options though.

2. The formats. Obfuscated formats justified as standards by bribing the appropriate organizations (ISO). By being de facto as well as de jure standards, MS Office cannot easily be competed with, since there will always be that one thing (for me equations mostly) that never translate to other software.

This move attacks the second aspect of Office, by offering an alternative format with real advantages. This second aspect is the truly insidious (and dare I say, evil) part, and I would be glad to see it go, even if I would likely still use the MS Office applications where possible (i.e. not Linux) in an ODF-dominated world.

Incorrect Title (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35306706)

Google Launches New Assault With Microsoft Office

not

Google Launches New Assault On Microsoft Office

Re:Incorrect Title (2)

quangdog (1002624) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306796)

I'm still confused about the word "Assault" in this title... if they are assaulting with MS Office - whom are they assaulting? The only other decent real-time distributed document editing system that is worth using is google docs. Why would Google partner up with MS to assault... Google?

I'm still amazed at the stranglehold that MS Office maintains - I've not owned or used a copy of Office in more than 10 years. Plenty of alternatives exist, and they work great.

Re:Incorrect Title (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306882)

OOI, which others have you actually tried?

Re:Incorrect Title (1)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307082)

It's all about verbs. If they said, "waggles free widget" you'd just scroll off. But hey, "assault" sounds aggressive, doesn't it. Doesn't mean that the actual syncing tool is greater than Halo on Android, but ow you can plop your data in two places.

Isn't that "assault"? I mean, c'mon.

whuh? (2)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306740)

"Too the cloud, Alice!"
What the hell does that even mean?!!!

Re:whuh? (1)

FPoe (1935312) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306984)

I've asked myself this many times. As a storage analyst, everyone always uses "the cloud" as a buzz word to excite their managers into spending money. In the end it's still business as usual. disk backend, FC switched SAN. Sure it may be on demand, but when does on demand end? When I upload 14TB of documents?

Re:whuh? (1)

AlienIntelligence (1184493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309686)

I've asked myself this many times. As a storage analyst, everyone always uses "the cloud" as a buzz word to excite their managers into spending money.

In the end it's still business as usual. disk backend, FC switched SAN. Sure it may be on demand, but when does on demand end? When I upload 14TB of documents?

You really don't get it... it scales EASIER. Fault tolerance
is TRUE fault tolerance. When something breaks in the middle
of the night, you can fix it the next day cause at most maybe
you lost 20% cycles, all the data is still there, it's still available.

You come in the morning, replace the broken item, no one even
knew anything had happened.

The entire backend "cloud" has been commoditized. Sure it
runs much better on a bunch of blades or server optimized
equipment but you can use commodity stuff until that point!

Not sure what the 14TB of docs has to do with it?

Oh! Wait... you're one of those, that sees the word cloud and
thinks it only runs on magic on someone ELSE's servers.

No, that type of cloud is for SOHO and personal use. I'm talking
about the private corporate cloud. All your data is still yours,
it's still under your roof. You control it.

Resistance is futile you will be assimilated into the cloud.

-AI

Re:whuh? (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310610)

s/2011/1985/g
s/storage cloud/VAXcluster/g

OK, now I get it.

Thank you! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35307116)

Google will never win. You know why?

MS Office is the business desktop software. Do I want *my* data to be stored on someone else's servers? No Fucking way!

Speaking as a small business owner, Google's "Cloud" business software is a no starter. Period. Don't want to hear it.

If MY data is not on MY computers - FUCK OFF!

Microsoft rules until then!

Just say'in.

Got a problem with what I've said, then come up with a solution that compells me to switch.

Otherwise, Microsoft Rules and everyone else drools!

Open Office is an ok substitute.

Re:Thank you! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35307400)

Have fun living in the last century, grampa. Don't forget to keep the flannel shirt suitably grungy. The rest of us actually like having access to our data anywhere and at anytime on any computer we happen to have handy.

Gotta love the old timers. lol.

Re:Thank you! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35307402)

Google has already addressed the whole security issue (relevant document is here here [google.com] ). Microsoft's own EULA's language is so thick and customer unfriendly that they could have the right to sleep with your daughter and kick your dog and you wouldn't be the wiser.

As for the part about the keeping data on your computers, what prevents you from keeping a backup of your gdoc cache, I do it and makes it so that I can keep the warm and fuzzy feeling of having my documents with me as well. I prefer this because keeping documents syncronized between a netbook, a laptop, a smartphone, and all the various computers I work on is a pain in the ass.

I work in the education market and I can tell you this, once you show a teacher how to keep a syllabus synchronized for 30 students and can set up shared documents for group projects, they jump on it hardcore.

Re:Thank you! (1)

kullnd (760403) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309098)

I would love to use google docs, it would allow for much more functionality than my current budget allows for, and I would likely have a more reliable system while cutting cost at the same time.

That being said, I have two issues with google that they need to find a solution for before I could consider switching, they fix these and I would switch in a heart beat.

First, I want to be able to limit the IP addresses that are allowed to log into corporate accounts... I don't want people on their home computers logging into google and having direct access to all of our corporate data. I would prefer that users have to connect to our VPN, log into a terminal server, and then access the google docs. There is alot of controls that I can place on the corporate computers, and the terminal servers, which protect our data from just being downloaded onto personal hard drives and this is VERY important to me.

Second, I would like to be able to prevent any account that is NOT a corporate account from being able to be accessed on our systems, the risk for data leak is too high when myownfuzzylogin1979@gmail.com logs into google on a corporate machine. We have alot of sensitive information, and we take many steps to protect that information (i.e. our outgoing email is all screened and flagged if something is detected). As it stands today, google apps are blocked for this very reason.

Google, fix those two things and we are good to go!

Potentially Shady Opportunity for Google (1)

mfh (56) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306768)

The spin from Google on this seems legit, but it also seems like they just want to have access to all our shit in case they want to snoop. I mean how hard would it be for them to read all the documents or pass on our footprints to other parties?

Re:Potentially Shady Opportunity for Google (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308542)

They will charge you a fee to set it up in-house if you don't trust the googleplex. Remember kids, the first hit is free, the addiction not so much (see Microsoft Office)

Re:Potentially Shady Opportunity for Google (1)

Johnny Mnemonic (176043) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309356)

I don't believe that's true. If you mean the GSA, that's just search, not docs. The "docs for enterprise" stuff all mentions hosting on Google's cloud, even if you get your own domain. I'd love a link that proves me wrong.

Embrace, Extend.. (1)

mewsenews (251487) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306778)

Microsoft should write some server code that can talk to Google's Cloud Connect plugin! Then we can have Google search results on Bing and Google Doc files on Microsoft's cloud servers!!

Re:Embrace, Extend.. (1)

nemesisrocks (1464705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307262)

If this was really "Embrace & Extend", the Google addin would "embrace" the Ribbon (love it or hate it), and "extend" their addon buttons to another tab (like say, Acrobat does).

Instead, they choose to have an ugly old-style toolbar occupying more vertical screen real estate.

Good Luck! (1)

foobsr (693224) | more than 3 years ago | (#35306788)

TFA; "so everyone can contribute to the same version of a file at the same time"

Which essentially means that the file is versionless.

Good luck restoring to an intended state if someone fucked the thing up.

CC.

Re:Good Luck! (3, Informative)

mclearn (86140) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307062)

Have you even used Google Docs before? Every document has a detailed versioning history with full support to revert back.

Re:Good Luck! (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 3 years ago | (#35311236)

You've got to love Slashdot, where everyone has a say, and no one ever RTFA (or even uses the product commented on).

Yawn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35306858)

/Yawn

You can do that stuff now with live workspace (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35306938)

Not sure where MSs "cloud" plans are going, but office users/sharepoint clients can also collaborate like that with the windows live workspace offerings that have been available for a long time.

"Contributing to same file at the same time" (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307204)

I actually have seen this at work in a production environment, and it really works. it was a curious experience, after all those years of standalone office programs.

its as if a lot of people are in the same chat room, but producing a document.

Not what I was hoping for yet (1)

Gonoff (88518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307288)

I would like some way of using Word to edit stuff stored in Google Docs. All this seems to be is a way of using Word to upload stuff.

Anti MS comments aside, Word is a better Word Processor than Google Docs. Docs is very good but it is not what World+Dog is familiar with - yet...

If someone can point me to how I can use Word to open stuff on Docs, edit it and save it back there that will do the trick. Then we will just need to make an Open Source plugin for stuff like Open Office and Office Libre and it will quickly find its way onto everything else. Microsoft can pick up its bat and go home...

How good is compatability? (1)

enter to exit (1049190) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307370)

Having never used google docs for any real work, can someone tell me how well Google docs handles MS formats especially. docx and .doc ?

I'd assume it would have to be near perfect otherwise it would suffer from the same problems facing Openoffice/Libreoffice...unless i'm not fully understanding the concept of google docs...

Re:How good is compatability? (1)

joh (27088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307556)

Google Docs is only a poor replacement for MS Office. Either you squeeze what you have to do into what Google Docs supports or you leave it. I think it is clunky and has a terrible UI, too. But as always with Google it it as free as air and everyone is breathing it.

Did /. become CNet? (0)

Ex Machina (10710) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307384)

How is this news for nerds? More like News for Office Drones!

Re:Did /. become CNet? (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307920)

How is this news for nerds? More like News for Office Drones!

The "office drone" is worth $6 billion each quarter to Microsoft.

You mght want to think about what that means when you are trying to develop and promote an alternative office suite or an integrated office system.

That means that consumers spent more than $1 billion on Office last quarter. According to investor relations director Bill Koefoed, a lot of those sales are upgrades in place from Office 2003, but consumers are also buying Office 2010 when they buy new PCs -- or upgrading from the free Starter Edition that comes with many new computers.

Businesses are still the main customer for Office, however, and they spent nearly $4.6 billion on it and related products during the quarter.

Office Saves Microsoft's Bacon For The Second Straight Quarter [businessinsider.com]

Re:Did /. become CNet? (1)

WidgetGuy (1233314) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308594)

<OFF-TOPIC> Thanks for that link. I now have new, "sweaty steve" wallpaper! </OFF-TOPIC>

Re:Did /. become CNet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308184)

Um, because the people at Google who did this could be considered nerds?
So, if you were in charge, a story could not be posted on Slashdot unless it were about emacs, SQL, MATLAB or something?

Was anyone else disappointed..? (1)

Burning1 (204959) | more than 3 years ago | (#35307504)

Was anyone disappointed when they found out that this didn't mean Google was rolling tanks out out of mountain view?

Do more: add OpenOffice.org & LIBREoffice Plug (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308194)

Google should take on Microsoft more directly and develop non-web based competing applications like OpenOffice.org and LIBREoffice. Add integration with its cloud services and they can even generate revenue. If Google can do what they did with Android and I have no doubt they can get 50% of MS Windows and MS Office market. Linspire failed even though they almost succeeded and had NO serious ground support years ago. Corel failed years ago and could have succeeded. None of these failures were because GNU/Linux failed. Each and every time GNU/Linux has failed has been because the companies managers and CEO's failed to gain the support of its investors. While I firmly believe that Corel and Linspire could have seceded and the one almost did they were horribly mismanaged without a clue as to how to go about it. We're a small company with a fraction of the $$$ I see 50% of the mass market today which uses MS Windows and MS Office being supportable. With one additional product we'll be able to support another 30% in the next year. 80% of the market can use GNU/Linux. Now where are the companies who can actually take advantage of this on a massive scale? Nowhere to be seen. It's sad that we're the ones doing it and only able to do it in a few states all because we don't have the funding to do it elsewhere. We make more money off of GNU/Linux then MS Windows too.

Office 365? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308284)

They are trying to take on Office 365 (of "To the Cloud!" fame). Dunno what it's like, or if it's even available yet, but it'll probably work better than a competitor-provided plug-in.

This sounds more like an assault on... (1)

His Irateness (2003264) | more than 3 years ago | (#35308352)

...document management systems, like Hummingbird, than on Office itself. I suppose they're trying to get people used to "Cloud" document storage, though, so they can slide them into Google Docs.

Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35308928)

Microsoft typically doesn't charge customers to evaluate its software or services

Hogwash, I've been evaluating Windows betas for 20 years.

Threatened by change? (1)

Johnny Mnemonic (176043) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309304)

The comments here about how collaborative editing can't possibly work beggar my experience and office reality.

Do most folks here really think that passing around versioned copies of Word docs in email is the most efficient way to work together? Or is it just what you're familiar with because you've been sucking on Microsoft's teat for 2 decades?

Docs works. It's not great as a word processor, but it's totally made up for with the collaboration that a team can do in realtime. Try it before you bag on it, because I might have to work for you next.

Re:Threatened by change? (1)

Coriolis (110923) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310086)

It's one of the classic logical fallacies, Argument by Personal Incredulity. People seem to have immense trouble putting two and two together here. Google has put many, many person-years into working out how to do this. How do people think Wave worked, pixies?

Is real time collaboration a good thing? (1)

ashvin213 (1602795) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309324)

I write documents a lot of it. Most of the time, one person is in charge of either reviewing, commenting or making edits. I am unable to imagine why 10 authors sitting across the globe HAVE the urge to work on a document at the same time.

Have /. users done this type of real-time collaboration? What is the scenario? Did you guys find it useful?

Microsoft: Been There, Done That (4, Informative)

DavidD_CA (750156) | more than 3 years ago | (#35309694)

All registered users of Microsoft Office 2010 enjoy the free Sky Drive service, a 2 GB storage space in "the cloud".

Not only can you share files with others, but it integrates directly with the "Save" command in Office as one of the destinations.

Oh, and the people you invite to collaborate with you don't even have to have Office. They can log in (for free) and edit your documents via the web-based versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. It's rather slick, and yes, it works in Firefox and Safari.

Re:Microsoft: Been There, Done That (1)

thijsh (910751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310746)

Oh wow, it's almost like Google Docs, only a little late to the party!
I have MSO2010 (hardly ever need it, but still) but for online collaborative editing I always use Google Docs. Both are 'free' and look OK, but I trust Google to do a better job at their search integrates with GMail so I can find relevant files in the bulk fast.

Re:Microsoft: Been There, Done That (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35311238)

My experience with Skydrive. Confusing as hell, and it only works well on IE and in Windows. Forget uploading doc in Firefox and Safari, and worse in any other platform other than Windows.

Would be nice if not for the bugs (1)

ThatbookwritingWheel (553383) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310022)

I had the "pleasure" of working with DocVerse before they got acquired by Google. Nice tool, but the bugs, crashes, inconsistencies of it removed all the advantages. Bad preview quality, unusable once you used non-english content, I really hope they did some serious work on it recently.

The worse of both worlds (2)

Pascal Sartoretti (454385) | more than 3 years ago | (#35310276)

So you get the worse of both worlds : locked-in with a proprietary Microsoft file format, and your data handed over to Google. Great.

Sorry, but I'd much prefer a standards-based solution (ODF documents on a WebDAV server, maybe).
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