'

Google Docs keeps getting better in Ed

A reader of my post yesterday on online education suggested that I not teach any of the classes if I open my own "education aggregator" school. His fear?

A reader of my post yesterday on online education suggested that I not teach any of the classes if I open my own "education aggregator" school. His fear? That the only course I could teach would be Google 101. Although I hate to validate his fears, I have to report on some particular cool new features in Google Docs.

The most impressive feature is a complete equation editor. Although not as elegant as the editor in Word, it at least matches what OpenOffice has to offer and suddenly opens up Docs to entire departments who may have been hesitant to use it with their students.

Google has also added improvements to outlining, footnoting, and formatting (including sub- and superscripts). Google posted a quick slide show highlighting the new formatting features in an Apps-created presentation:

According to their blog post,

For those of you conducting surveys, we added a "Go to page based on answer" option in Google forms, making it easy to show participants only those questions that are relevant to them...And when that paper is written and ready to turn in, you now have the option to print footnotes as endnotes for a cleaner-looking paper.

Google, for its part, is going to have to keep innovating like this. An hour on the phone with engineers and PR folks at Microsoft yesterday has me convinced that Microsoft will not cede this space without a fight. New features in Office 2010 and close integration with their own Web Apps mean that 2010 will be a very interesting year for those of us in Ed Tech looking to the cloud for our productivity applications.