Phil Sim

Web, media, PR and… footy

Docs gets a WYSIWYG view… nah, just kidding

I’ve done a lot of bitching about the lack of WYSIWYG functionality on Google Docs. Basically, you have never had any idea what your document is going to come out like when you need to print.

Now, I don’t print many documents and it’s annoyed the hell out of me, so I can imagine how frustrating it has been for those users who print most of what they writer. Indeed, it’s annoyed me enough that I’ve recently switched to Buzzword for documents I write with an intent to print. But today I got excited when I discovered that Google had finally introduced a “fixed-width page view”.

At first I thought, yes, Google Docs finally has gone WYSIWYG but alas, it took me a grand total of 30 seconds to work out that wasn’t the case. I’ve not even had a chance to properly test it by printing out any documents but already I can see its a long way short of being WYSIWYG.

The first obvious flaw was that you can’t see your document from a vertical perspective. Page breaks just look like a line splitting one long page. I then tried changing the margins on the print settings and my document didn’t change at all.

And this is what the Google help says about the new feature: “Page view layout is an alternative way to edit your documents. As its name suggests, page view allows you to display your docs in the form of a page. Not only does it have a sophisticated look, but it also allows you to more easily visualize how a doc will actually look on paper.”

More easily visualize? Nup, this ain’t no WYSIWYG. Oh well, it’s a start I guess.

Filed under: Online Wordprocessing,

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