Under The Wire

Under The Wire

Friday, November 21, 2008

EtherPad. The only way to write shared documents

Forget about Google Docs and other online tools that promises to help you editing collectively your shared documents but doesn’t have a way to see the modification to the document in real time. Such applications are the past in collaboration tools: with EtherPad we have a really cool web-application to write plaintext with your friends seeing what others are doing live.

Here my 2 cents:

Why does EtherPad rocks?

You can see the modifications live. Do I have to add something more?

Try it and fall in love with its clean interface that provides nothing more than a shared Notepad. And does it well!

You can chat with your friends to talk about what are you writing and really collaborate on what you are doing.

What is still to be done?

Support for other document formats than plain-text should be great. Unfortunately the world is not only about simple text.

Also a way to store files on my disk would be appreciated. Or are you thinking in the Google-ish way that all my documents are belonging to you and only to you?

Please try to get a 100% availability :-D. This service is really cool but if I can’t talk with your servers is quite useless.

Thanks to Oscar for the link!



The reason why EtherPad doesn't let you export or save is because you are expected to copy and paste the text.

In this way, EtherPad isn't "Google-ish" at all, although I do share the feeling that Google like to own all our documents.

I concur, a limitation of the web is that you require a connection to a server somewhere. Short of using magic, it's not likely EtherPad will remove this dependency and why would they? Using the Internet as their platform allows them to connect people from everywhere.

This service is brilliant and a true asset to all of us, what's more it's managed to be free. An achievement in itself.

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