Victoria Shannon of the International Herald Tribune believes that in the world of Web 2.0 an internet-based rival for Word will soon emerge. Some excerpts from her article:

“One [program] that I have been trying is called Writely. You sign in free and within a moment or two, you are creating a document that can be saved or sent in a variety of formats, including HTML for the Web and a version that Microsoft Word programs can read.”

“It has all of the basics features – but few of the more complicated. But Writely isn’t meant to be a word-processing software replacement. Its goal is something else altogether: to share a text document among several writers or editors who can edit it or collaborate on it.”

“And since all of the work is done on the Internet, not on your laptop or desktop computer, the files are saved on Writely’s servers. That offers another benefit: You can save a document from home and gain access to it at work, for instance. Or add to it from an Internet café at every city on your vacation or business trip.”

“Of course, if you can’t get to the Internet for whatever reason – server down, no Internet café, no wireless signal – you can’t get to Writely. Is the Internet reliable, secure and ubiquitous enough to replace Microsoft Word? That is the pressing question for this and all of the other “Web services” cropping up.”

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