Google Docs: What is it, How to Create and Why Should You Start Using

in Cloud Applications, Google Docs, Online Office Application

Of course, Computers changed the way we work on day to day basis. We no longer need to keep messing with lots of papers and create them having pencils and pens in our hands. The tools like MS Office, Open Office are helping every business, either small or big. Creating, editing, printing and sharing documents, spreadsheets and presentations, schedules was never so easy in the history.

What is Google Docs?

How to create a Google Doc

Most of us use desktop applications such as Microsoft Word or Open Office to create Documents, Spreadsheets, Presentations. The problems with these desktop applications are you need to install them on a computer and at the most only one person can sit and work on it at a time.

Google Docs is a free, Web-based word processor, spreadsheet, slide show, form, and data storage service offered by Google. It allows users to create and edit documents online while collaborating in real-time with other users.

With Google Docs you don’t need to install anything or pay money to buy license to use it. You can almost create, access documents from anywhere in the world, share them with friends and co-workers and do much more.

Why Should You Start Using Google Docs

  1. Documents lives in the Google Cloud. Which means you need not to worry about the physical location of the file. You also don’t need to move your files in USB drive or send them as email attachments. You can access your file anytime from Internet.
  2. There is no need to keep multiple copies of a document as Google Docs supports a document revision feature which helps you maintaining the history of the documents.
  3. Documents are now very easy to share with view/edit permissions. Sharing documents is also very easy. All you need is to enter email addresses of your friends to share and they can view/edit as permitted by you.
  4. Collaborative access to documents allows multiple users to edit a single document simultaneously. So it doesn’t matter where users are located as long as they all are having internet connection. True use of Internet, isn’t it?
  5. Yes, It’s Free. Similar to other services by Google, you can use Google Docs free of charge. If you are already using any of Google’s services, you don’t even need a registration to use Google Docs. Just log in with your Google Account and start using it.
  6. As it is an web application present on Google’s server, *you don’t need to update/patch *software on your computer, as generally happens with your desktop applications. These applications are always updated by Google on their server. So every time you come back to use your documents, you are always using updated software. :)
  7. It might shock you but you can also edit your Google Docs documents from Microsoft Word. OffiSync application for Google Docs allow you to combine the power of both Microsoft Office and Google Docs. So now you can open, view, edit and save Google Docs documents from Microsoft Office applications.
  8. Do you have a Smart Phone? Great, because now you can edit your documents from your smart phone via browser or via Google Docs applications. Now you don’t need to worry about carrying your important documents as you can carry them with your smart phone and view/edit any time.
  9. Google Docs Viewer is also an important feature that you  must try. It allows you to quickly view documents online without leaving your browser. It currently supports 15 file types such as docx, pdf, psd, etc.
  10. List of Google Docs features is always increasing as Google is constantly improving its features and services time to time.

How to Create a Google Doc

How to Create Google Doc

  1. Visit http://docs.google.com and login with your Google account. If you don’t have an account you can create one with link provided.
  2. Click Create new button that will show a menu having Documents, Presentation, Spreadsheet, Form, Drawing options. Choose one you wish to create.
  3. Depending on the document type you have chosen, a screen will appear with a menu option on the top and document editor in the center screen. Start editing the application.
  4. You can use keyboard shortcuts Control+S to or hit save button to save the document. Alternatively you can use menu bar to perform actions or use shortcut from toolbox.
  5. On top right side, you will see Share button, having options to share documents.
  6. Discussion button helps you discuss/chat with other users who are collaborating in the documents.

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