Google Docs Documents and Google Docs Spreadsheets are tools that I use a lot of the time for collaborative working. There are things that could be improved but as free tools I don’t expect them to be as comprehensive as a paid version of Microsoft Office. Specifically I like:
- able to have multiple simultaneous editors with clear colour indicators during the editing process
- ease of access on multiple devices including options for collaborators without a Google account
- ease of use in terms of the interface and the ability to download in different file formats
So I guess I had high hopes for Google Docs Presentations (I have written about this before here: Google Docs presentations reconsidered).
Normally I do a Prezi presentation, but in this case a PowerPoint was required and because three of us in disparate locations were collaborating I thought it worth trying Google Docs Presentations. These were the issues:
- I uploaded an existing PowerPoint file – there were formatting issues – some images didn’t import, 1 slide had an animation which no longer worked
- I didn’t find the user interface as intuitive as Microsoft PowerPoint which slowed me down
- I didn’t find there were enough advanced features which made me appreciate Microsoft PowerPoint more as I have obviously just become used to certain functions e.g. image formatting features
- when uploading a YouTube clip a screenshot appeared that you had no choice over and in one case was extremely poor resolution; once downloaded the link to YouTube was lost
- when I tried to download a Presentation as an editable file and open in PowerPoint it came up with error messages – these error messages repeated several times although in the end I was able to open the file (I tried this both with Presentations started from scratch in Google Docs and ones I had uploaded)
How did we resolve these issues? Well we couldn’t meet up so in the end we used Dropbox to transfer versions of PowerPoint between us – much faster and easier. Finally we also used Dropbox to share the PowerPoint (as it was too large a file size) with the conference organiser.
Please share your experiences of using Google Docs Presentations, maybe there are some secrets to using it properly that I am missing out on? or maybe not?