I am extremely fed up with my experience with Zoho Writer & Google Documents. I’m in the process of helping someone write a 10 page paper. Initiallly we started out with Zoho. I’m was very excited because I happen to be a fan of Zoho Writer’s interface. It’s more pleasing to my eyes than Google and seems to offer more options for text styles. We tried this and ran into bug after bug after bug. I noticed that in parenthesis next to the title of the document sat the word “autosaved”. Cools. I didn’t even know when it happened. However, this was actually not the case. I noticed that the document never automatically showed the changes made, as Google Documents will do when you are collaborating. We had to keep refreshing the page or opening the document over and over and over again. Sometimes, the changes wouldn’t show up until 2-3 refreshed took place, and this was with me manually saving the document. After a while, my partner began getting an error of something along the lines of “remove this node”, everytime she clicked into Zoho Writer’s space. After 20 minutes, we gave up and moved on to Google Documents.

 Google Documents was much better. We didn’t run into too many bugs, and there were no “node” problems. However, something I didn’t know was that even if you manually save a document, if you were to click discard changes, everything you’ve changed in that document will be erased. It basically resets your document, regardless of whether you’ve saved it or not. When I copy and pasted a paragraph into Google Documents it kept writing over another piece of text that wasn’t even highlighted nor clicked on and it wouldn’t let me undo the change. This is when I clicked the discard changes button. Prior to this happening, I’d already manually saved the document.

This was the icing on the cake for me and I eventually opened up Microsoft Word 2007 and I’ve been using it to write the paper ever since. So much for collaborating online. Web office apps, still have a long way to go and desktop office apps will be ruling the world for a very long time.

Corvida Raven

A natural pioneer at grasping the rapidly changing landscape of technology, Corvida Raven talks tech in plain English on SheGeeks.net.