Moving away from Office on the desktop to Office on the cloud

As a creature of habit, most folks are just “happier” using Word, PowerPoint and Excel for productivity on the desktop. I said “happier”, since I am not sure its about being happy anymore. I had a great discussion with Sridhar of Zoho at the office 2.0 conference about applications on the cloud.

I have never purchased a computer so far for personal use alone. All of them have been provided by the company I worked for or in many cases (when I started my own company) had my co founder source for me. I admit all of them came with all the bells and whistles included – Office, Outlook etc.

This week as I start again on my own I do have my old laptop 2003 DELL PC (yes its a PC and still works after all these years) and I have the same applications on them. I am inclined to use Google applications since I had a VERY bad experience with Office 2007. I am more of a keyboard user and the new 2007 suite made me unlearn a lot of keyboard strokes I had known and used for a long time.

So I took the plunge and uninstalled Office 2003 from my laptop.

A week of usage of Google applications and my top observations are:
1. Its just simple. It has all the features I need and the ones it does not have I am beginning to not miss any more.

2. Its much easier to share. I was sending my editorial calendar around (bad Mukund) via email as a PDF file, but I could have just as easily pointed folks to the online version.

3. At some point my laptop will fail and when I get my new PowerBook Pro I doubt I’ll ever go back to Office if its not already installed.

My kids use the online Google docs (for fun typing stuff) and they dont notice that its not on the laptop.

Its a matter of time is my sense. A long time (10-20 years) and many things will happen between now and then, but I like things on the cloud better.