Wednesday, 15 November 2006

Google Docs & Spreadsheets: blog posting

When I was tinkering with test Blogger Beta blogs earlier, there was a new note on one of the pages saying you could post to Blogger using Google Docs & Spreadsheets. I'd not seen that before (maybe it was in Docs but I don't use that much, or hadn't so far).

I wish I'd taken a screenshot, because I can't now find it again - perhaps Google are adding that note randomly to various blogs?

However I thought I'd try taking a look at Google Docs & Spreadsheets, and there is indeed now an option to publish to a blog when you go to the Publish tab:

You then have to click to set your blog login settings from that page:

Note that they're offering a choice of blogging platforms, not just restricting it to Blogger, i.e. BlogHarbor, BlogWare, LiveJournal, SquareSpace and even WordPress:

One trap here, if you use Blogger you may forgiven for not bothering to click on the dropdown because at first sight you might think you don't have to, but in fact if you're on Blogger Beta you have to make sure you do that and select the second option, or it won't publish to your blog, even when you use the correct username and password for Beta.

My attempt to do a test post to a test Blogger Beta blog didn't work for that reason:

But posting to a test "classic" Blogger blog did - when you click Post to blog you get a popup to confirm it's OK to post:

And after it's posted you get confirmation it's been published plus the option to Republish or Remove from the blog:

My test post via Docs, a deathless (untitled) asdf, is here - nothing much to see, really!

I'm sure it will work with Blogger Beta too, provided the correct option is chosen from the dropdown.

I was whinging before about Google not integrating their products/services enough, but clearly, from things like this (and a recent interview given to the FT which I read), they do realise the importance of coordinating their services. Good on Google.

As there are some standard keyboard shortcuts in Docs & Spreadsheets (still not enough though, in my book!), as a keyboard fan I may even try using it for drafting future posts now - and I'd be interested to see if posting a spreadsheet will work too, haven't tried that yet though. Hats off to Kirk, who had speculated to me not too long ago that Google might get us to use Docs as the post editor for Blogger. I thought it might be too soon for them to try that as they were still sorting out Blogger Beta, but he was right!


kirk said...

Well I don't think I was right just yet Imp. :-)

I had gotten that notice about GDS being compatible with Beta also, and had tried it out about a week ago. It does work for Beta, but with limits. The post titles don't transfer (not sure if it ever worked in Classic blogger either, haven't used it much) and GDS tags don't transfer over as labels.

Now if they could get both of those things working with Beta, then that would be pretty cool. The former writely seems like a pretty nice editor, and would be a good tool to use with Blogger. IF they get titles/labels support in it.

But then again they are promoting it with the little ads, maybe I was right. Yeah. :-)

Manas T said...

Improbulus, I think you were referring to this note to try Google docs.I took a screenshot before clicking on it. :)

Improbulus said...

Kirk, of course you're right, you always are! Thanks for the info about the post titles - I haven't had the time to try GDS much yet.

Manas, thanks for that, indeed, that's exactly what I meant. :)

Melvin Ram said...

Have you guys figured out how to get the Google Docs to publish a doc into blogger with a title. It always comes through with no title for the post.

~ Mel

Improbulus said...

Sorry Mel not had time to play round with this much, will let you know if I do.