Writely, so.

I've had numerous ideas for web-based applications and the folks behind Writely have come pretty close to reading my mind.

Writely is an online document editor. It's primary purpose is to facilitate document sharing between multiple authors. That in itself is interesting. With Word support, it can replace the need to purchase Word by allowing document editing via the browser.

Another feature they should look to implement if they haven't already, is PDF support. Being able to generate PDF's on the fly and e-mail them off would be fantastic.

From a marketing perspective, I likely would have focused on the site's ability to replace the cost of software like Word and Acrobat as opposed to the document sharing aspect. I'd be interested to hear if they contemplated one approach over another.

It's still in beta and have been seeing a surge in traffic. As a result, they are currently not accepting new beta testers. I look forward to getting the opportunity to try out what should be a rather intriguing application.

Published September 09, 2005 · Updated September 14, 2006
Categorized as Quick Links
Short URL: https://snook.ca/s/412


5 Comments · RSS feed
Wesley Walser said on September 09, 2005

I was wondering when people were going to start trying to make a word (and other popular desktop apps) killer.

Not saying that this is it, but it's definetly looking like a start.

Mike said on September 10, 2005

I checked it out, but unfortunately (or fortunately?) my main browser is Safari and they're still working the kinks out in Safari still.

Still looks pretty cool though, I'll definitely give them that. And the main site is pretty well-designed to boot.

David Lee Hemphill said on September 10, 2005

I was lucky enough to have signed up before they stopped new user registrations. I was actually thinking about what other kinds we would be seeing in the near future and this was on the list.

I would really dig PDF support as well.

Mike S. said on September 10, 2005

I've tried it out as well. Seemed to work pretty well and I was very impressed at the relative speed.

The no-support-for-safari thing is a huge pain in the butt since that's my main browser as well. I guess I have to use FF at least some of the time. I did install it for a reason.

MarkBu said on September 14, 2005

I still think the sharing and tracking of changes is key to this type of app. Especially corporate, as you say the PDF then rounds it off. I have been trying to justify it being a 'real' document editor - competting with word, but it is very hard to take the full control out of users hands - too many features etc. So I keep coming back to only allowing raw text editing in the tool.

Sorry, comments are closed for this post. If you have any further questions or comments, feel free to send them to me directly.