Sunday, July 26, 2009

Google Doc Now Supports Office 2007 File Formats

Google on June 1, 2009 declared that its Google Docs will support Office 2007 file formats such as docx, xlsx, pptx and so on. The extensions .doc, .odt, xls, .ods, .ppt, .csv, .html, .txt, .rtf, and others were already supported. Now it will support

* For spreadsheets: .xls, .xlsx, .ods, .csv, .tsv, .txt, .tsb
* For documents: .doc, .docx, .html, plain text (.txt), .rtf
* For presentations: .ppt, .pps

Google Docs is an web application or service provided by Google that you can use to share, create and edit documents online while collaborating in real-time with people all over the world. It offers you free Web-based word processor, spreadsheet, presentation, and form application. Advantages are clearly visible. You never need to worry about overlapping revisions or heavy email attachments. Above all, you can store everything online, that implies you need no additional back up and that you can access the files from anywhere you like. With so much to avail and all for free, I find its a great tool to manae your documents online. Still when Microsoft Launched Office 2007 started stuck. This now has solved and you can enjoy Google Docs in full fledge.

Read More..

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Update Sulumits Retsambew - Blogging Tips

1. Consider your audience
Even if your blog is generally personal, still, it would be better to consider the minds of your readers. You have to think of something that would interest them.
After all, most of the reasons of people who write blogs are not at all confined to their own personal motives. Most of them would love to be “heard” (or read) and would love to be known, in some way or another, even for just a minute. Hence, it is very important to come with a write up that everybody can understand, not necessarily that these people can relate to it but they can understand it.

2. Pictures speaks a thousand words
To make your blogging worth the browsing effort of your readers, it would be extremely nice if you will put some pictures in it. It does not necessarily mean you have to place a picture of yourself. Any photographs will do as long as it does not pose danger or insult to anyone who will be reading your blog.

3. Make constructive and beneficial blogs
Even if you are free to write anything you wan to say to the world, still, it would be better to create some write-ups that would be beneficial to your readers. After all, its information technology that you have there so better be inclined to provide information rather than sheer quirky entertainment.

4. Avoid making multifaceted and complicated blogs
In order to have an interesting blogs, try not to use some highly technical and highfalutin words. After all, it is not a science discourse or a debate that you are making, so better stick to simple facts and short blogs. Bear in mind that most people who use the Internet usually do more scanning than scrutinizing each site word for word. Therefore, it would be better to come with blogs that will not bore your readers just because you have these lengthy articles.

5. Make it interactive
As much as possible and if your capacity will allow it, make your blog interactive. Yu can do this by placing some video or audio clips in your blog.

You can even place an area for comments or for some feedbacks. In this way, you can get some impressions or reactions of other people. Who knows, you might even gain some friends just by making them feel at home in your blog site. Indeed, blogs are not created just for the mere fun of it. It also has its own purpose in the world of the Internet. therefore, for people who wish to harness their craft, as far as writing is concerned, blogs are the best way to do it. And as they say, blogging is the contemporary term of creative and commercial writing.


Monday, July 20, 2009

Bet on Office Web Apps Over Google Apps, Analyst Says

Microsoft may have had its hand forced by Web-based alternatives, but the software giant will deliver a free Web version of Office, called Office Web Apps, that will launch in tandem with the paid, desktop version of Office 2010, which is in technical preview now and due to launch in the first half of next year.
With both online (Office Web Apps) and offline (Office 2010) versions of Office forthcoming, Microsoft seemingly has all the bases covered: a new, feature-rich desktop productivity suite and a lightweight online version to compete with emerging Web-based free alternatives such as Google Docs and the Zoho suite.

Slideshow: A Visual Overview of Office 2010

But Microsoft is also in a challenging position where it must avoid cannibalizing sales of its own lucrative desktop productivity suite ($20 billion in revenue forecasted for 2009), yet not lose out to online alternatives.

Sheri McLeish, analyst at Forrester Research, says that Microsoft's expansion of Office will be good for the industry and provide Microsoft with a worthy one-two punch.

"If we didn't have these free alternatives from Google and Zoho, surely Microsoft would not be doing this," says McLeish. "But all the competition in the productivity tools space benefits businesses and consumers."

Read More..

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Top 5 non-obvious feature enhancements to Office 2010

The question has been asked, who really needs to use Microsoft Office these days? The answer is, anyone who is in the business of professionally generating content for a paying customer. Word 2010 may not be the optimum tool for the everyday blogger, and Excel 2010 maybe not the best summer trip planner, just as a John Deere is not the optimum vehicle for a trip to the grocery store. But in recent years, Microsoft is the only software producer that has come close to understanding what professional content creators require in their daily toolset.

So far, the improvements we've found from actually using the Office 2010 Technical Preview released Monday (as opposed to the ones Microsoft told us about) can mainly be described as usability enhancements -- tools that appear to be responses to how people actually use the products. Compared to Office 2007, which threw out the old instruction manual with regard to how applications should work, Office 2010's changes are subtler, slicker, and less ostentatious. Of those we've noticed in our initial tests, here are five which we feel will make compelling arguments for at least some users to upgrade:

5. Embedding Web videos in PowerPoint presentations. Technically, it's possible to embed a YouTube video into a PowerPoint 2007 presentation, but you need a third-party plug-in to pull it off. Otherwise, PowerPoint is only geared to play locally accessible files, essentially using a Media Player component.

One of the very few functional changes to PowerPoint 2010 is the addition of a mechanism that enables you to embed YouTube and other videos into a presentation the same way you'd embed them into a Web page: by copying the HTML code directly in. PowerPoint 2010 (gauging from the Technical Preview) will allow you to preview the video in-place without having to view the presentation as a slideshow first, which demonstrates the depth of functionality Microsoft truly intends for this component -- apparently an in-place Adobe Flash object. It will be even nicer when this feature works; in our tests, the new component often did not locate the video online and looked for it in the "My Documents" directory instead.

A new restricted editing feature in Word preserves the formatting while enabling named editors to add and change content.4. Restrict Editing command in Word 2010. Many publishing organizations use Word as their principal tool for editing textual content, which means collaborators shuttle multiple documents between authors, editors, and proofreaders. Microsoft's collaboration tools are supposed to enable only certain parties to make changes. But in the publishing business, formatting codes are the keys to the final formatting of a production document, and if someone who has access rights can change those paragraph formats, even accidentally (which is easier to accomplish than you might imagine, thanks to customizable document templates belonging to each user), the entire production process can be held up, sometimes for days, while formatters work out the kinks.

This simple tool may go a long way toward preventing these kinks from popping up. On a per-user basis, Restrict Editing (located in the Developer panel, which is not displayed by default) can prevent named individuals from making certain types of changes to a document, even if he's generally permitted to make changes. Among the available restrictions are changes to styles, which creates the possibility for a safeguard that publishers can use to prevent authors from changing manuscripts willy-nilly to suit their tastes. (Can you tell I've been in the editing business?)

Read More..

Monday, July 13, 2009

Microsoft planing free, online version of Office

The technology titan tries to stop Google Docs from encroaching on its turf.

Everyone predicted Microsoft Corp. wouldn't take long to fire back against Google Inc.'s latest foray into its home turf.

It took less than a week.

On Monday, Microsoft said it would offer a free version of its popular Office software suite that would run on the Internet.

The Redmond, Wash., company didn't mention its archrival by name, but analysts saw Monday's move as a strategy by Microsoft to protect one of its most profitable businesses against Google, which already dominates the Internet search market.

The Web-based version of the Office suite will be available next year.

"Microsoft was forced to provide a free product" as an answer to Google Docs, a suite of free, browser-based document and spreadsheet editing software, said Sheri McLeish, an analyst with Forrester Research. "It's a very competitive market out there, and this was Microsoft's opportunity to one-up Google by offering a much better product."

The announcement, made at Microsoft's developers conference in New Orleans, is the latest tit-for-tat in an intense competition between the two technology giants.

The Mountain View, Calif., search giant said last week that it would develop an operating system designed to attract users away from personal computers, where Microsoft is ubiquitous. Google's Chrome OS and software would run on the Internet, where Google has a commanding share of the Web audience.

Last month Microsoft released Bing, its answer to Google's popular search engine.

By giving away versions of its Office software, Microsoft risks cannibalizing one of its most profitable products. The company's business software division, which includes Office, made $9.3 billion in profit from $14.3 billion in sales during the first three quarters of its 2009 fiscal year. The unit also has revenue from other software applications and services such as Microsoft Exchange, but the bulk of its sales comes from Office, which includes the Word and Excel applications.

About 80% of companies recently surveyed by Forrester use Microsoft's Office. Less than 8% use other document editing software, including IBM Corp.'s Lotus Symphony, Sun Microsystems Inc.'s StarOffice and Google Docs.

For Microsoft, the imperative is to maintain its dominance, according to Melissa Webster, an analyst with IDC. She said a recent survey found that nearly everyone who used Web-based document editing software such as Google Docs also used Microsoft Office.

Many, for example, create a document using Excel, then upload it to the Web to share with colleagues, who may read and edit the spreadsheet using a Web-based program such as Zoho Sheet or Google Docs.

"Web-based tools are not taking share away from Microsoft's desktop Office suite," Webster said. "But to the extent that these products are complementary, Microsoft needs to get in the game. They risk losing users as people get more comfortable using Web-based tools. And they risk losing their edge."

Microsoft's group product manager for Office, Chris Bryant, said its customers were increasingly using the Web to share and edit documents.

"It's something our users have said they'd like," Bryant said. "Customers are telling us they expect to use the Web-based applications as companions to their desktop software."

Bryant declined to outline how Microsoft would make money with the move, but hinted that business models could include advertising and fees for premium services such as online storage of large files.

The free versions won't include all the features of the desktop software, priced between $70 for a basic student version and about $350 for the professional version. For the upcoming software suite Office 2010, Microsoft plans to let users edit video in PowerPoint and manipulate images in Word -- features that would be unavailable in the free versions.

Investors didn't appear to be concerned about Microsoft's proposed giveaway. On Monday its shares gained 84 cents, or 3.7%, to close at $23.23


SEO's And Microsoft Search

Microsoft has remodeled their search engine over and over again. The Microsoft Network, or MSN whose origins started as an ISP and an online portal when Windows 95 came out grew into a search engine that was always trailing as the 3rd most used search engine behind Google and Yahoo in terms of search engine usage with the United States. From to and finally

SEO Need-To-Know

SEO Need-To-Know

is now branding itself as a "decision engine." Do they mean Bing has some unique decision algorithm in giving relevant results that it can decide on what are the best sites for you to look at? Not really. It is a decision engine that it gives you various types of results that may help you decide on what you are looking for. In my opinion this just sounds like Google Universal Search Results, just gave it a new name from Live to Bing and slapped a full marketing campaign on various advertising mediums to spread the word of the Gospel of Bing everywhere.

Should I even care about Bing?

From daily SEO interactions from SEO friends working at an SEO firm, SEO friends on forums I interact with daily, to some SEO competitors who joined Sulumits Retsambew SEO Contest, a large percent of SEO professionals do not even care about Bing because they believe Google has the majority search usage world wide. Based on some research data by comScore, last April 2009, Google websites receive about 8 times more search queries than Microsoft websites.

April 2009 Search Queries - Usage Comparison of Google, Yahoo, Microsoft (MSN/Live/Bing) Ask and AOL

Is this the case forever? We cannot really say as Microsoft is really pushing their search engine all out in this marketing campaign of Bing that there are some sites showing Bing gaining in market share. As for the usage, several news site and blogs are showing an increase in Bing search traffic but this can still be due to the campaign that makes everyone curious about Bing and everyone checks it out. And in the end, it will still boil down to how please the search engine users are in being able to look for what they are searching for. So we still have yet to see in the next few months if Bing's traffic sticks or continues to increase or will drop again as being the 3rd used search engine again.

Going back to the question, should you even care about Bing? Well if Bing is only 8.2% of all search queries, that can still be a big number. The US has 220 million Internet users and about 73% of those use search engines for shopping, that is an estimated 13 million people searching Bing in the US. Still a large market to target. Ok you can say my numbers are not accurate. My B2C Local Business Search data was from Neilsen back in September 2007, even 50% of 13 million is still a significant amount of people using Bing.

I'm an SEO and what do I need to know about Bing?

Ok SEO people, what do we need to know? Since, we have been seeing Microsoft reach out to SEO people, when they came out with their own XML Sitemap submission area, with some basic top 5 backlink info, and making an MS Excel plugin for keyword research from Microsoft's AdCenter, now with Bing, they have released a Bing webmaster guideline document for the SEO people that cared about Bing to read.

Most SEO concepts are the same throughout search engines. Good SEO best practices are valid for most search engines. And in this 24 pages of information of Bing's webmaster guidelines, after reading all of it, I will try to sum it up into 3 key bullet points below that may be unique to Bing:

1. Target Category Keywords that appear on the upper left of the SERPs. You want to make sure you appear on all of them that are good converting keywords for your business. People usually narrow down search results by adding in keyword modifiers and Bing suggest these so people do not have to think or type and may find it convenient to click. It is even placed on the top left sidebar where navigational menus people normally click on.

2. Optimize the Document Preview of your pages. All SEO people know that the Title tag and Meta description tag does not only help in the ranking process but if written well, these can be more compelling to click and increases CTR. Now aside from these two, Bing now has the Document preview which based on current observations it is pulling in the initial content found on the page. Thus your first few paragraphs would be ideal to write something very idea to click on.

1. Having your address and phone number which is a normal practice for Local SEO is a good thing since Document Preview will try to look for this information and place it in the preview window.
If you do not want this feature enabled, you can use the nopreview tag.

2. Implement SEO Flash Best Practices. Bing has expressed their sophistication in their technology specifically stating this:

When titles and/or meta descriptions dont exist on an HTML page, at runtime Bing creates a best-effort caption from relevant external sources of reliable information to populate the caption with meaningful data for the searcher. Bing, in the effort to improve searcher experience and avoid empty captions, can even construct captions using keyword inbound link text from external, authoritative websites to help create basic captions where no publisher data exists.

Initially this sounds good. But sometimes any information based on other websites may give you a limited amount of control. Every business has enemies and sometimes even if the enemies are a minority, they can sometimes be the "noisiest" online and could be creating a significant amount of negative publicity about your business. You do not want Bing to show this information thus as a precautionary measure, always do Flash properly.

Everything else mentioned in their webmaster guideline whitepaper are all standard SEO best practices applicable to other search engines, such as good content, unique title tags and meta tags, avoid duplicate content, etc.

So if you know SEO already these are the 3 main differences above you might want to look at when optimizing for Bing.


Friday, July 10, 2009

Google Seen Posting 2Q Growth, But At Slower Pace

Despite the troubled economy and sagging prices paid for the search giant's online advertising, Wall Street expects Google Inc. (GOOG) to issue an earnings report next Thursday showing profit and sales gains for the second quarter ended in June.

Still, the anticipated numbers are also thought to reflect a decline compared to first quarter, which ended in March.

Analysts expect Google to post second-quarter earnings excluding special items of $5.05 a share, and $4 billion in net revenue, according to estimates compiled by Thomson Reuters.

That compares to earnings excluding special items of $4.63 a share and $3.9 billion in net revenue for the same period a year earlier - which ended before the economy began dramatically tipping into a recession.

The expected results nonetheless reflect a decline from the first quarter, when Google posted earnings of $5.16 a share excluding items. Google itself doesn't offer financial guidance.

Justin Post, an analyst covering the company for Bank of America/Merrill Lynch, told clients Thursday he thinks Google will meet Wall Street's second-quarter expectations, though management's comments on trends in the overall economy will be of more interest. Post noted that Google Chief Executive Officer Eric Schmidt has made public statements recently indicating he feels the economy should begin to recover soon.

"The Street, in our view, is largely looking past [second-quarter] results and will be focused on management's tone and comments on the economy (as a gauge for cost-per-click outlook)," Post wrote in a report.

Post maintains a $480 price target for the company's shares. Google shares have risen more than 33% year-to-date, outpacing the Nasdaq Composite Index. The shares closed at $410.39 Thursday afternoon.

   Paid-Click Slowdown

Google's paid clicks, or the number of times Internet users click on the company's advertisements and generate revenue, are expected to have increased in the quarter compared to the period last year - though not quite at growth rates seen in the past. Post estimates that paid clicks grew 14% in the period, whereas they were growing at a rate of 20% as recently as the first quarter of last year.

Read More..

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

IntroducingNew OS : Google Chrome OS

It's been an exciting nine months since we launched the Google Chrome browser. Already, over 30 million people use it regularly. We designed Google Chrome for people who live on the web — searching for information, checking email, catching up on the news, shopping or just staying in touch with friends. However, the operating systems that browsers run on were designed in an era where there was no web. So today, we're announcing a new project that's a natural extension of Google Chrome — the Google Chrome Operating System. It's our attempt to re-think what operating systems should be.

Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010. Because we're already talking to partners about the project, and we'll soon be working with the open source community, we wanted to share our vision now so everyone understands what we are trying to achieve.

Speed, simplicity and security are the key aspects of Google Chrome OS. We're designing the OS to be fast and lightweight, to start up and get you onto the web in a few seconds. The user interface is minimal to stay out of your way, and most of the user experience takes place on the web. And as we did for the Google Chrome browser, we are going back to the basics and completely redesigning the underlying security architecture of the OS so that users don't have to deal with viruses, malware and security updates. It should just work.

Google Chrome OS will run on both x86 as well as ARM chips and we are working with multiple OEMs to bring a number of netbooks to market next year. The software architecture is simple — Google Chrome running within a new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel. For application developers, the web is the platform. All web-based applications will automatically work and new applications can be written using your favorite web technologies. And of course, these apps will run not only on Google Chrome OS, but on any standards-based browser on Windows, Mac and Linux thereby giving developers the largest user base of any platform.

Google Chrome OS is a new project, separate from Android. Android was designed from the beginning to work across a variety of devices from phones to set-top boxes to netbooks. Google Chrome OS is being created for people who spend most of their time on the web, and is being designed to power computers ranging from small netbooks to full-size desktop systems. While there are areas where Google Chrome OS and Android overlap, we believe choice will drive innovation for the benefit of everyone, including Google.

We hear a lot from our users and their message is clear — computers need to get better. People want to get to their email instantly, without wasting time waiting for their computers to boot and browsers to start up. They want their computers to always run as fast as when they first bought them. They want their data to be accessible to them wherever they are and not have to worry about losing their computer or forgetting to back up files. Even more importantly, they don't want to spend hours configuring their computers to work with every new piece of hardware, or have to worry about constant software updates. And any time our users have a better computing experience, Google benefits as well by having happier users who are more likely to spend time on the Internet.

We have a lot of work to do, and we're definitely going to need a lot of help from the open source community to accomplish this vision. We're excited for what's to come and we hope you are too. Stay tuned for more updates in the fall and have a great summer.