Wednesday, February 19, 2014

23 things: thing 6

Thing 6 is document creation and editing, and I tried out Quickoffice. It's not something I see myself using much, if ever. On a tablet it would make a little more sense, but creating documents on an iPod or phone is a hassle. The screen and keyboard are tiny, and I have to type with one hand while holding the device in the other hand. I can't imagine any circumstance in which I need /want to create a document but the only computer available to me to do it on is my iPod.

Having said that, how is Quickoffice as a product? I looked through the example documents before creating anything, to get an idea of what it can do, and it seemed serviceable, nothing fancy. There are a row of buttons at the bottom of the screen to allow basic editing options--different fonts and type size, bold/italic/underline, paragraph formatting, spellcheck, search-and-replace, word count, undo/redo, printing options. Basic, useful stuff. However, I found that when I actually started typing in a new document, those buttons were not there. If I tapped "Done" and the keyboard went away, then the buttons long as I had the iPod in vertical, portrait orientation. In landscape, the buttons simply weren't there. And I type in landscape, because it makes the keyboard slightly bigger and I hit fewer wrong keys.

How big a drawback is this? Hard to say. I can't access the buttons anyway without hitting Done and making the keyboard go away, and there's no reason to keep it in landscape if I'm not using the keyboard. But it is one more step separating the typing from the editing. The editing works fine once I was able to get to it. I tried formatting my paragraphs, spell-checked, and did a word count. Documents can be stored in the cloud (Google Drive), so they don't take up space on the device.

On the whole, I'd say that Quickoffice is a bit cumbersome but functional. If I absolutely had to create a document on my iPod, this app would allow me to do that, but there are better means, on larger computers with real keyboards, available to me.

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