Perhaps Google CEO Eric Schmidt did really mean it when he winked to John Battelle yesterday before the entire Web 2.0 community that he does not seek to smother the Microsoft desktop with the Google cloud!
After all, how serious a contender can he be if it is BIG news eight months out of the Google Apps gate “How to make a pie” (in Googley kitsch). In down to earth speak: “Google Spreadsheets gets charts.” Hooray!
Here are the new spreadsheet features touted by a Google software engineer, straight from Tel Aviv:
Named ranges: you can define a name for a range of cells, and use this name in formulas to refer to cells, for example write =sum(expenses) instead of =sum(c12:e17). This helps make calculation logic clearer to write and understand. Check it out under the "Formulas" tab.
Cell comments: Attach comments to individual cells, great for additional information or for collaboration on a single cell.
Bi-directional text: The ability to properly view and edit text in right-to-left languages like Hebrew. This is very important for our local community here in Israel.
A quick way to duplicate a sheet.
A new right-click option to search the web for the text in a cell.
Phew! None of that pesky feature bloat Microsoft Office is always being accused of.