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Review: Google Spreadsheet Beta Doesn't Quite Add Up

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Google

There's a lot of talk around the blogosphere about how Google is starting to challenge Microsoft for primacy in office applications. This isn't very surprising: Google's already got an e-mail client (Gmail), a scheduling app (Google Calendar), and has bought a company called Upstartle in order to obtain its Writely word processor (which is not currently taking on new users but, according to the company's blog, might reappear for invitees early in July). Now Google has released the beta of an online spreadsheet called, appropriately, Google Spreadsheet.

Google Spreadsheet is obviously aimed straight at the consumer/home office market -- in other words, at people who use their spreadsheets for reasonably simple accounting processes, data tracking, or other tasks. Since that is exactly where I fall in -- I use it for simple statistics and as a sort of "database lite" -- I thought I'd give it a try.

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Question is...

... Can Google Spreadsheet do what the FOSS software movement has been unable to do so far? That is, create a viable competitor to Excel...

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