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Google Docs Asks What You’re Doing This Weekend

Wants to serve non-work functions

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For whatever reason(s), Google Docs hasn’t really caught on in offices.  So, in what appears to be a Plan B, the company is attempting to show how the application can be useful in people’s off-the-clock lives.

On the Official Google Docs Blog, Meredith Whittaker describes the way in which she and several friends share movie, music, book, and restaurant recommendations with each other.  It’s definitely a neat idea, and you’ve got to give Googlers credit for sticking with their own corporation’s products.  There are a few problems, though.

Google Docs
 Google Docs Wants To Play

First, this solution won’t always answer specific questions.  It’s great that one of Whittaker’s pals recommended Chekhov, for example, but his name alone gives few clues about subject matter and tone.  It might be better to tell some friends, "I’m in the mood for a British mystery novel" (or whatever), and then ask what they think.

Second, this sort of open recommendation system already exists within most social networks; go to anyone’s profile page, and he (or she) will likely have a list of his (or her) favorite things.  There’s no need to reproduce every word in Google Docs.

Finally, although this isn’t particularly Google Docs-specific, Whittaker says that one of her friends recommended Lord Jim by Kingsley Amis.  No such book seems to exist, and a phone call or instant message might be needed to clarify between Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis and Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad.

Plan C, anyone?

Google Docs Asks What You’re Doing This Weekend
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