Phil Sim

Web, media, PR and… footy

Form Builder is key to online suite

Google Docs unveiled a much nicer version of its form builder and semi-detached it from spreadsheets.

I believe a Form Builder to be one of the most important applications in any online productivity suite. On a desktop you’re adding your own data but when you go online you’re going to want to allow others to add data to your workflows. It once again goes to show that you can’t just transplant desktop apps onto the web – you need to reconsider what makes up a online productivity suite because they should be very different beasts.

Anyway, I’m glad that the Google Docs team appear to understand the importance of their Form Builder. From their blog post on the new form builder and additional feature enhancements titled: ‘Forms move out of their parents basement’, engineer Andrew Bonventre notes: “Just wait until Forms is old enough to drive… Oh, the places we’ll go!”

I’d love to be able to create multi-page forms with different paths based on the user’s answers.

I’ll also point out for heavy docs users, an absolutely critical new feature that has been added to spreadsheets. The ‘importrange’ function allows you to import data from different spreadsheets. For one, this means you can have a spreadsheet that makes use of more than one form but we’re also going to use it to build a master scoresheeting document that pulls data from the various sheets used by each department.


Filed under: Content Aggregation

3 Responses

  1. Glad you’re enjoying the product. I think it’s an important feature, too :).

  2. I’ve been playing with it too. Kicks ass. Probably bad news for Surveymonkey.

  3. Phil Sim says:

    Andrew, I think the point is forms shouldn’t be an important feature it’s an important product. I’d like to see it detached from spreadsheets altogether and be given the option of sending my data to either a gdoc spreadsheet or a gbase database, for example.

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