Microsoft brings collaboration to Office

Today Microsoft is announcing a beta of Office Live Workspaces (you have to sign up to get access to the beta), which brings a lot of the advantages of Zoho or Google Docs/Spreadsheets to the Office Suite most of us use. Here’s a video where they explain the new service to me.

This is very impressive and takes Office Live a LOT closer to the online office suite that we all are hoping Microsoft brings us. It also demonstrates that Microsoft is going to defend its Office cash cow from newcomers like Zoho and Google Docs/Spreadsheets.

What do you think? Are you as impressed as I was?

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Great list of Office 2.0 apps

Ismael Ghalimi has a wonderful list of Office 2.0 apps that he’s using in his daily work (Office 2.0 are apps that you use to improve your work and which go beyond the standard Microsoft Excel/Word/Powerpoint apps that don’t let you easily collaborate with others). Does anyone else have a list that is better? How many apps/categories on this list do YOU use?

By the way, on Monday morning Microsoft will announce something pretty cool in this area, which is why I’m interested all of a sudden.

One thing I’m seeing missing on Ismael’s list is wiki tools/services. Wetpaint is a good example there and they are announcing something soon for Enterprise users as well. Lots of movement in this space, which makes a list like this even more valuable! Thanks Ismael!

Collaborative Chandler revealed

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I’ve been hearing about the Chandler project for years. It’s one of the things that Mitch Kapor funded through the Open Source Applications Foundation. Some people thought it might be an Outlook killer. My friend Ted Leung worked on it and I’ve always wanted to check it out.

A few days ago I got my chance when I was invited over to meet Mimi Yin, project designer, and Katie Capps Parlante, general manager to get a look. They explained to me that Chandler is aimed at small groups who want to work together in a way that email doesn’t afford.

This interview and demo combo is pretty long, but we need that length to get into some depth about this project.

What do you think?

UPDATE: Ted Leung, who works on the project, added a lot more detail onto his blog and reponded to some things he saw on the interview.